Members of the Western Australian Farmers Federation (Inc) (WAFarmers) today re-elected unopposed as Senior Vice President, Tony York, and Vice President, Max Watts, at the 2013 WAFarmers Annual General Meeting sponsored by Gadens Lawyers.
Badgingarra cattle and sheep farmer, Dale Park, enters the second year of his first two-year term as WAFarmers President.
Mr Park said once again the last 12 months have been difficult for a number of farmers across the state with lower than average rainfall followed by late rains which affected Western Australia’s crop and in turn farm businesses’ bottom lines.
“Farmers also continued to feel the chain reaction from the 2011 live export ban as export markets conform to meet the requirements set out in the Exporter Supply Chain Assurance System (ESCAS).
“Commodity prices, in particular red meat, have suffered due to the closure of certain markets and other pressures such as the high Australian dollar.
“I have attended a number of meetings in regional areas, which has given WAFarmers a full understanding of the feelings and sentiment currently being felt in rural communities.”
Mr Park said the industry needed to understand where WAFarmers, as the peak farm body for Western Australia, can make a difference.
“Unfortunately, we cannot make it rain, we cannot intervene in markets to positively affect commodity price outcomes and we cannot intervene in monetary policy to reduce the Australian dollar to a more export favourable rate,” he said.
“However, we can attempt to influence the cost of doing business for famers in this state and federally through our membership with the National Farmers’ Federation. We will continue do our best to ensure that governments understand the impact of regulation on the farming sector.”
Mr Park went on to say that WAFarmers had played a large role in the State Election with WAFarmers’ 10 Key State Election Issues attracting the attention of the major political parties.
“The Liberal-National Government has been re-elected and we will continue to use these 10 key issues as the basis to work for the state’s farmers and hold this government to account by judging their performance,” Mr Park concluded.