National recognition for Australia’s most important industry
21 November 2017
Australia's single most important industry is today getting the recognition it deserves with the establishment and celebration of National Agriculture Day.
Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, Senator Anne Ruston, said the inaugural National Agriculture Day was an opportunity for Australians to acknowledge and thank generations of farming families.
"There is no industry more important than the one which provides us with food and other necessities of life," Minister Ruston said.
"However our nation's farmers, and agricultural and food sector workers and businesses, do so much more for our nation than simply keeping us fed.
"They're international leaders in agriculture, producing some of the best food on the planet for more than 60 million people in markets around the world. They're the stewards for so much of Australia's unique landscape and environment.
"It's an industry underpinning the livelihoods of thousands of rural families, the economies of many hundreds of regional communities, and millions of Australian jobs.
"It's an industry worth more than $63 billion to the national economy, particularly in terms of exports, and – at the moment – Australia's largest contributor to national GDP growth. No sector grew faster than agriculture in 2016-17.
"As the world's population continues to increase, our farmers are becoming even more innovative, productive and sustainable. It may be the world's oldest industry, but today it's one of the most forward-thinking and advanced industrial sectors adopting all manner of cutting-edge technology from satellite imagery to robots and drones.
"A couple of generations ago, almost every Australian had some sort of familial connection to a farm or a rural community. National Agriculture Day is an opportunity to reconnect with rural Australia and thank our farming families for their contribution to our nation.
"The Aussie farmer has made Australia the lucky country."