Happy New Year Everyone. My thoughts and well wishes are with anyone who has been directly affected by fires this Summer.
In this January 2020 edition, I have included special information and provided links for further assistance for those who have been affected by bushfire. Please feel free to pass onto anyone you know who has been impacted by these devastating fires. Also in this edition, a wide range of news articles, workshops & events, funding opportunities, research updates and available resources.
If you know someone who might be interested in joining the Greater Sydney Small Farms network, they can register HERE.To provide ideas on how the Greater Sydney Small Farms network can help you, please emailme or phone 02 4724 2151 or 0436 803 337.
Regards Richard Stephens Regional Agriculture Landcare Facilitator (RALF)
Assistance available for bushfire affected landholders & communities
Immediate Emergency Assistance - Can be accessed through Evacuation Centres and Disaster Welfare Assistance Points, or call 1800 018 444 or visit www.emergency.nsw.gov.au
Emergency Temporary Accommodation - For short term housing support, call the Housing Contact Centre on 1800 422 322.
Clean-up Assistance - For the removal and disposal of residential bushfire debris including asbestos, concrete slabs and dangerous trees, contact your insurance company or the Insurance Council of Australia on 1800 734 621, or if uninsured, contact Public Works Advisory on 1800 88 55 39.
Animal Welfare - Provision of emergency fodder, stock water and stock assessment, euthanasia and/or burial, contact Local Land Services on 1800 814 647.
Commonwealth Government Disaster Recovery Payment & Allowance - $1,000 per adult, $400 per child and short term income assistance is available for people severely affected by bushfires. Phone Human Services on 180 22 66 or click HEREfor more information.
NSW Government Disaster Relief Grants - For financial assistance for eligible individuals who have low income and limited assets, contact the Disaster Welfare Assistance Line on 1800 018 444.
Primary Producer Assistance - Up to $15,000 recovery grants (33 NSW LGAs only), concessional loans and transport subsidies is available for eligible primary producers. Contact the NSW Rural Assistance Authority on 1800 678 593.
Small Business Assistance - For up to $15,000 recovery grants (33 NSW LGAs only) and concessional loans for eligible small businesses, contact the NSW Rural Assistance Authority on 1800 678 593.
Legal Assistance - Legal Aid can provide free assistance on issues such as insurance policies, employment, tenancy, credit and debt. Contact LawAccess NSW on 1300 888 529.
Potable Water Assistance - For the replacement of potable water for residents not on town water supply where RFS has taken water or contaminated roofs with fire retardant, contact the Disaster Welfare Assistance Line on 1800 018 444.
24/7 Mental Health & Wellbeing Assistance - Mental Health Line - 1800 011 511 Beyond Blue - 1300 224 636 Lifeline - 13 11 14 Mensline - 1300 789 978 Kids Helpline - 1800 551 800 If someone is in immediate danger, call 000.
Volunteer Firefighters’ Financial Support -Payments for eligible volunteer firefighters who are self-employed or employed by a small or medium business and have lost income, contact Service NSW at www.service.nsw.gov.au
Sporting Club Assistance - Concessional loans for eligible sporting clubs, contact the NSW Rural Assistance Authority on 1800 678 593.
Church & Non-profit Organisation Assistance - Up to $15,000 recovery grants (33 NSW LGAs only) concessional loans for eligible churches and non-profit organisations, contact the NSW Rural Assistance Authority on 1800 678 593.
Motor Vehicle Stamp Duty Relief - Financial assistance for eligible motorists whose cars have been written off as a result of bushfires, contact the Office of State Revenue on 1300 139 814.
Replacement of Documents - Free replacement of licences, permits and certificates, including birth, marriage and change of name certificates and NSW Fair Trading permits and licences, contact Service NSW on 13 77 88.
Waste Disposal - The levy for bushfire related waste disposal has been waived in bushfire affected LGAs, contact your local council for more information.
Please note, a number of these measures have eligibility requirements.
Want to be a part of the Young Farmer Business Program? NSW Dept of Primary Industries is offering to hold a range of free young farmer business workshops in the Greater Sydney Region if the demand is there. Usually run as 3 hour stand alone evening events, they include:
Getting Started: Business Ready - Business structures, GST, ABNs, using accountants, business goals, etc.
Getting Started: Bank Ready - Finance options and an explanation of what banks look for in a loan application
Startup Stories - Business networking including warts and all stories about starting a farming business.
To register your interest, please contact Tim Flynn, mobile 0447 655 163 or email [email protected]For more information on the Young Farmer Business Program, clickHERE.
The difference between 'going carbon neutral' and 'earning a carbon credit' To earn a carbon credit you need to investigate 'Climate Solutions Fund' options that suit your farm, such as planting trees, reducing methane or improve soil carbon. You also need to measure, monitor, keep records, claim your carbon sequestration and then sell to the government or other buyer. Going carbon neutral involves calculating your carbon footprint, improving efficiencies to lower your footprint, buying carbon credits or generating your own and then obtaining certification. For more info, click HERE.
Australian honey bee industry bio-security code of practice From 1 July 2020, all NSW beekeepers will need to adhere to the Australian Honey Bee Industry Code of Practiceas a condition of registration.This means from 1 July 2020, beekeepers have new minimum standards to meet, including: Inspections, Disease management & reporting, Hive construction, branding & maintenance, Record keeping. For more information and help on meeting the Australian Honey Bee Industry Code of Practice, Click HERE.
On-farm dung beetle rearing sites A successful pilot program using flat-pack ‘nurseries’ for dung beetles has paved the way for volunteer producers to breed their own dung beetle colonies on farm. This concept is a project of Dung Beetle Solutions International and is shaping up to be a significant step forward in the widespread establishment and breeding of dung beetles involving volunteer farmers managing their own ‘starter’ dung beetle colonies. For more information, click HERE.
WORKSHOPS & EVENTS
Young Farmer Business Program conference Date: 6 February (tour); 7 February (speakers & dinner) Location: Dubbo, NSW Cost: $149 full rego; $19 breakfast; $49 tour. Learn more about the drivers of successful primary production businesses, the support services available and practical steps to achieve your dream. Hear from experts on finance, negotiation, planning, and young farmers who have made it. Speakers include Mark Bouris of The Mentor; former Wallaby Stirling Mortlock; and succession specialist Isobel Knight. Click HERE.
Unlock the future of food and farming Date: 18-19 February 2020 Location: The Royal Exhibition Building, Carlton Victoria Cost: $770 for Primary Producers The 'evokeAG 2020' program covers the most topical conversations in our agrifood tech industry. The broad ranging program has been created so delegates can design their own event experience. With simultaneous activities, thought-provoking conversations, interactive sessions and networking opportunities, there is plenty on offer to all delegates. The program has three streams – food, farm, and future. Click HERE for more details
'Free up your natural capital' conference NOTE NEW DATES: 24-25 March 2020 Location: Albury Cost: Early bird, $330, to 31 January, or $440. The Savory Global network is gathering in Albury NSW in March 2020. The Australian Holistic Management Co-operative is organising two days open invitation events on the theme that agricultural production and environmental stewardship can both be part of the same approach. For more information, contact Tony Hill on 0412 128 755 or [email protected] or click HERE.
Small scale poultry keeping workshop Date: 27 March 2020 Time: 12noon to 3pm (lunch included) Location: 40 Edwards Road, Richmond Lowlands Cost: $85 per person. Places are limited so register early. The workshop will cover: Housing and nesting; Chicks and roosters and how to manage them; Pest control and general care; Feed and nutrition; Biosecurity (Health and Disease); Live handling of poultry. A veterinarian will be on-hand. For more information and to register, click HERE.
Community action grants to reduce the impacts of climate change To help communities take practical steps to reduce climate change impacts such as heatwaves, bushfires or floods, grants for between $10,00 and $30,000 are now available. The grants can foster partnerships between community groups, not for profits and indigenous groups and local councils. Round 1 is open until 31 January 2022. For more info, clickHERE.
Drought Community Support Initiative The second round of the Drought Community Support Initiative (DCSI) is now open. The program can be accessed through the St Vincent de Paul Society or The Salvation Army. The DCSI provides financial help for people currently suffering from the drought, offering emergency payments of up to $3,000.Those eligible include farmers, farm workers, farm suppliers, contractors, those who derive their primary income from farming-related activities or are currently experiencing hardship as a result of the drought. Click HERE.
Well-Being Grants The fifth round of Well-Being Grants to Support Farming Communities is now open. Grants of between $1,000 and $50,000 are available for community-led initiatives that help support the mental health and well-being of drought affected communities. Applications from a range of community groups and organisations are invited. Applications for Round 5 are open now and close Friday, February 28. For more information (including application guidelines), or to see what has been funded so far, please click HERE.
Want to be at the leading edge of technology? If you are looking for technology solutions to on-farm problems, the Farmers2Founders Early Adopter Program (EAP) can help you find, filter, and work with technologies so that you get early access to, and have input into, potential solutions. The EAP has a team of technology consultants who spend time to understand your challenges, then research potential solutions and set up pilots or trials. EAP is a community of like-minded producers who want to share learning and help each other get the best from technology. For more info, click HERE.
New research uncovers opportunities for environmental income Australian farmers manage 51% of the countries landscape and, as a result, are at the frontline of Australia’s conservation efforts.The National Farmers’ Federation and KPMG have released a joint report outlining opportunities for farmers to unlock the value of natural capital, such as the land and ecosystems that underpin farm production and how sustainable finance mechanisms could unlock billions in additional farm income. For a copy of the report, click HERE.
Transitioning to ‘climate-smart’ regenerative agriculture While regenerative agriculture facilitates climate change adaptation and mitigation, it can be challenging to transition from conventional to regenerative agriculture. Research by the Australian Centre for Culture, Environment, Society and Space, University of Wollongong and international partners finds that transitioning to 'climate-smart regenerative agriculture involves subjective, non-material factors associated with culture, values, ethics, identity, and emotion that operate at individual, household, and community scales. Click HERE.
Australian agriculture: an increasingly risky business The Australian farm Institute has released a research report on the extent and nature of risks faced by farm businesses within Australian agriculture and assesses the value offered by different management or mitigation options. The information can be used to direct risk management strategies and to help build risk resilience across agriculture production and into supply chains. For a copy of the report, click HERE.
Compost for Carbon: webinars for farmers to cash in on compost Applying compost increases the amount of organic matter in the soil. It works on all three aspects of soil fertility: - fertiliser (contains essential plant nutrients) - soil conditioner (physical structure of soil); and - biological stimulant (provides microorganisms and organic matter that soil microbes feed upon). Now, farmers that apply compost to land can also earn carbon credits (and ultimately cash) through the Government’s Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF). To watch the webinars or download factsheets, click HERE.
Food or War? Worldwide evidence points to a need to rethink our global food system so we can feed 10 billion people by the middle 21st century. Food production requires top soil, water, fuel and pesticides and results in the emission of carbon dioxide. Science writer, Julian Cribb describes in his new book 'Food or War' the need for regenerative farming, climate proof urban food production and deep ocean aquaculture. For more information, clickHERE.
A Best Practice Management Guide for Fireweed Fireweed (Senecio madagascariensis) is a Weed of National Significance (WoNS),
and is one of the worst weeds of coastal pastures in south eastern Australia. It contains pyrrolizidine alkaloids that if consumed cause liver damage and
occasionally death in livestock, particularly cattle and horses.
Poisoning is more likely to occur where livestock are new to the weed, where
it makes up a high proportion of the pasture, or where it is contained in hay or
silage. Otherwise, livestock tend to avoid the weed. To download a copy of the University of New England and CSIRO guide, clickHERE.
Regenerative Agriculture Alliance (RAA) The RAA is a collaboration of Australian researchers and practitioners in regenerative agriculture who aim to improve the holistic health and wellbeing of Australian landscapes, farmers and communities through regenerative agricultural research, education and practice. For a large variety of information, tools and 'Ground Cover' podcasts, click HERE.
Cultivate Farms Cultivate Farms is a social enterprise that matches next generation aspiring farmers with retiring farmers and investors to own and operate a farm together. It can remove barriers to farm ownership, attract more young people on to farms and find ways for retirement aged farmers to step back with dignity. Cultivate Farms provides a business structure and community support for farm match-making solutions. Click HERE.
Farm Co-operatives & Collaborations Would you like to learn about farm co-operatives? 'Farming Together' is a resource for primary producers to help collaboration, value-add, build marketplace strength and boost returns.Based on extensive research, 'Farming Together 'developed a variety of resources about farm co-operatives, collaborations and associated business structures. For more information, click HERE.
This project is supported by Greater Sydney Local Land Services through funding from the Australian Government's National Landcare Program.
The information contained in this publication is based on knowledge and understanding at the time of writing. However, because of advances in knowledge, users are reminded of the need to ensure that the information upon which they rely is up to date and to check the currency of the information with the appropriate officer of Local Land Services or the user’s independent adviser. For updates go to www.lls.nsw.gov.au
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