Smart farming forum comes to Lismore.
An evening "THE NEXT CROP" forum and public discussion was held at the Lismore Workers’ Club on October 4, 2018 to help map out a clever future for Northern Rivers’ agriculture.
During 2018, Fairfax Media toured the state, hosting free public forums to gauge public opinion on the state of rural resilience. Although west of the range much of rural NSW is struggling for people to fill jobs, on the coast the situation is different.
The Lismore forum was the eighth monthly event, which hopes to link producers in innovative agriculture to make best use of future opportunity. The forum investigated
the vitality of business and jobs creation from farms through to businesses in the main street.
"Diversity and innovation on the coast is remarkable and small, there are niche businesses targeting keen consumers that employ many people. Nimble and diverse systems drive agricultural resilience and with success comes more confidence, thus the North Coast is a platform for further innovation."
"Horticulture is the main driver now with tree nuts thriving in good soil under regular rainfall. Marketing is the big challenge for every sector, but the little grower is just as important, as a growing micro-retail sector is proving, delivering good food from paddock to doorstep."
"You could put a fence around the North Coast and live off the balanced diet that is produced here and this diversity of production is visible to the consumer. There is growing awareness about good food, delivered to your door and a growing retail sector on the North Coast is catering to those needs."
The event was moderated by well known “change negotiator” and leadership developer Allan Parker, from the Sydney-based Peak Performance Development.
Speakers discussed a range of hot topics, from social licence in a crowded world to disruptive and clever marketing. There were people promoting new developments in farm production, soil health and amelioration. Others talked about niche opportunities like timber, beef and berries.
The agricultural industry and general public were encouraged to share their views on North Coast agriculture, regional jobs creation and community well-being. The event was open to everyone.
For links to stories from previous Next Crop forums click here: https://www.theland.com.au/news/next-crop/