Producers told time to prepare for risk

DAF is helping graziers better prepare for and manage risk, adapt to a changing climate and become more resilient.

It has been a disruptive start to the year, with drought and flooding.

While a large proportion of the state is still drought declared, other regions have been inundated by flood waters.

These events highlight the need for planning to prepare for and manage risks.

To help graziers better prepare for and manage risk, adapt to a changing climate and become more resilient, the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) has partnered with the Australian Government's Future Drought Fund.

The aim of this partnership is to promote strategies that improve the endurance of rural business through the delivery of holistic farm business resilience planning support.

Led by DAF, the GrazingFutures Livestock Business Resilience Project has partnered with rural financial counselling services and natural resource management groups to provide a comprehensive extension program which is flexible to producers' individual needs.

Applying for drought assistance

If you are applying for the new drought assistance grants or loans offered through the Queensland Rural and Industry Development Authority, you will need to submit a comprehensive farm business resilience plan.

DAF has created a self-assessment checklist and Farm Business Resilience Plan template which aims to help producers identify activities to improve their drought resilience.

DAF beef extension officer Jodie Ward said the template encouraged producers to consider all aspects of their business.

This includes aspects such as the roles of each person and financial, climate and biosecurity risk-mitigation strategies.

"There is a helpful video to step you through the process," Ms Ward said.

"Producers can apply for drought preparedness co-contribution grants of up to $50,000 for new on-farm permanent capital improvements identified in their Farm Business Resilience Plan.

"They can also apply for low interest rate Drought Ready and Recovery Finance loans of up to $250,000 for preparedness measures consistent with their Farm Business Resilience Plan."

For more information about Queensland's new drought assistance program, the Grazing Futures Livestock Business Resilience Project and the Rural Financial Counselling Business Resilience Planning Services, visit:

The Grazing Futures Livestock Business Resilience Project is jointly funded through the Australian Government's Future Drought Fund and the Queensland Government's Drought and Climate Adaptation Program.

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