Sun. May 26th, 2024

NSW Minister for Agriculture Tara Moriarty met with researchers at the NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) Tamworth Agricultural Institute yesterday to discuss how their research is driving drought preparedness.

“Farmers across NSW are a resilient bunch, and the NSW Government is committed to supporting them to prepare for drought through agricultural research that helps farmers build on-ground resilience,” Ms Moriarty said.

“One example of this is NSW DPI’s research partnership with Meat & Livestock Australia, which is looking at how tropical perennial pastures can be integrated into grazing systems across NSW, to underpin livestock production and farm resilience.

“Tropical perennial grasses offer greater flexibility to farmers because they are more resilient in dry conditions and grow quickly in response to summer rainfall, to provide a feed source for livestock.

“During drought, depending on the conditions and size of herd, that feed source then may save producers on supplementary feeding, which is a considerable outlay of labour and money.

“Once seasonal conditions improve, the quick response of perennial tropical pastures to rainfall means that livestock can return to grazing those pastures faster.”

Most farmers are already monitoring on-ground conditions and climate forecasts closely, implementing supplementary feeding and considering options to prepare for forecasted drought.

“This month’s NSW DPI State Seasonal Update is telling us that drought conditions are continuing to emerge in the north, north-east and south-east regions of the state,” Ms Moriarty said.

“Now is the time for many farmers to consider things like stocking levels, whether they’re prepared to feed livestock, to what extent and for how long.

“Planning for drought early and being prepared is essential for the health and wellbeing of farm businesses, their natural assets and the people who work with them.”

“I have been chatting to farmers and researchers in Tamworth today, it’s clear they face numerous and complex decisions when seasonal conditions deteriorate.

“NSW DPI’s research gives farmers the best available knowledge from which to make decisions to

build resilience in their business.”

Information on drought preparedness and management is available on the NSW DroughtHub website at www.droughthub.nsw.gov.au.

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