A Morrison-McCormack Government will deliver a $30 million package to strengthen rural Australia with initiatives to ensure agricultural shows remain a centrepiece of regional communities, help educate children about agriculture and food production, and encourage more people into agricultural careers.

Our plan for a stronger economy means we can deliver a $30.9 million package that includes:

  • A $20 million Regional Agricultural Show Development Grants Program;
  • $10 million to take city kids to farms so Australians children see how agricultural products get from paddock to plate;
  • $720,000 to support Agricultural Shows Australia to promote the value of Australian agriculture, and;
  • $220,000 to encourage more young people to study agriculture by improving future education initiatives.

  • Right across regional Australia agricultural shows are delivered by hardworking volunteers, but they are often faced with ageing infrastructure and expensive repair bills, impacting on the quality of the show and in some cases, meaning shows are unable to go ahead.

    The $20 million Development Grants Program will help regional agricultural show societies upgrade and maintain existing infrastructure.

    For kids, we know from a study completed by the Primary Industries Education Foundation Australia in 2011 that too many of our young Australians don’t understand where their food comes from. For example, 45 per cent of primary and secondary school students didn’t think bread, bananas or cheese came from farms.

    We won’t allow our kids to be vulnerable to anti-farming campaigns from extremists hell-bent on shutting down agriculture. This new program will support primary and secondary school students to visit farms and other primary production worksites in the food and fibre supply chain.

    We will also back around 80 city schools across the country to set up fully integrated and computerised “mini-farms” to teach students about the use of water, land and energy in food production.

    To encourage more workers into agriculture the Coalition will deliver $220,000 to encourage more young people to study a field in agriculture by improving future education initiatives.

    This funding will means Primary Industries Education Foundation Australia (PIEFA) can run a new national survey of school students and teachers on food and fibre production and careers available in the agricultural sector.

    The Coalition will invest $720,000 into Agricultural Shows Australia (ASA) over the next four years to support country shows and agricultural events so this important organisation can continue promoting the value of Australian agriculture. It means the shows and programs run by ASA to be upgraded and remain relevant into the future.

    That support includes $510,000 for the Young Farmers Challenge to educate the broader community on the role of farmers, engage youth in agriculture and promote farm safety, as well as $120,000 for the Young Judges and Paraders’ Program, which promotes junior judging, parading and farm skills and gives rural kids development opportunities.

    We are also delivering $90,000 over three years to boost education around sustainable agri-food production for schools, shows and community events.

    The Coalition will always stand up for farmers and our agricultural industries.