Confidence in agriculture soars

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The results from our AgriFutures Australia Annual Stakeholder Survey are in and it’s positive news for our industry.

Results from recent AgriFutures Australia stakeholder research reveals 88 per cent of people surveyed are positive about the future of Australian agriculture.

Respondents also consistently acknowledged the importance of the role that AgriFutures Australia plays for their sectors, and Australian agriculture more generally.

In total, 81% of respondents indicated that the organisation has provided leadership in technology and food production through programs such as growAG. and evokeAG. and they agreed that AgriFutures Australia provided advice and leadership on national issues across the agriculture sector.

AgriFutures Australia’s Managing Director, John Harvey said our levy payers and other stakeholders come from a range of industries, new and established, and our diverse portfolio makes it critically important to capture all feedback on how we are working with them, and the impact we are having.

Our vision is to use the investments made in Research, Development and Extension (RD&E) to increase our producer’s knowledge and understanding. With shared knowledge we foster innovative, adaptive and valuable rural industries.

“It’s very encouraging to see the results from our levy payers. 59 per cent say the investments into research and development are practical and can be implemented on farm and 53 per cent say we have increased their professional capability and skills to better their industry.

2021 AgriFutures Australia Annual Stakeholder Survey - some results

“42% of levy payers are in an ‘expansion phase’ of their farm business and this is a critical time to access new research which will guide them in their decisions to be more profitable, sustainable and efficient. One of our focus areas for improvement is to further enhance the access to research to ensure that it gets in front of the eyes of the people who can use it,” said Mr Harvey.

According to the data, other room for improvement lies in encouraging primary producers to adopt new on-farm practices. 42 per cent of respondents indicated they did not intend to make changes to their production practice.

“There is always a large gap between research and commercial application. Translation is the key and can often require further funding, following research outcomes. This funding could be used for roadshows, workshops and information and training sessions, in small groups and sessions. Rapid uptake of research is rare and challenging, as industry often want turnkey solutions and for the technical and commercial risk to be removed, before implementing research,” said one anonymous respondent.

Mr Harvey said this feedback was being taken on-board and the organisation is looking to hold more face-to-face events and information sessions now that the COVID-19 pandemic and associated restrictions have eased.

Meanwhile, 90 per cent of participant’s in the organisation’s ‘People and Leadership’ programs such as the AgriFutures Rural Women’s Award, AgriFutures Horizon Scholarship, as well as scholarships to complete the Australian Institute of Company Director’s flagship course say they have increased their knowledge and exposure because of the programs. Respondents rated their likelihood to recommend getting involved with our leadership programs as 9.2 out of 10 to family, friends and others working in Australian agriculture.

“We truly value all the feedback we receive each year from our diverse and varied stakeholders. It’s critical that if we are going to grow the long-term prosperity of Australian rural industries, that we continue to look for improvements in how we do business.

“We want to thank everyone that took the time to fill in our annual Stakeholder Survey and encourage anyone who we work with to continue sharing their feedback on the work we do.”

To register your interest in completing our 2022 Stakeholder Survey, please email programs@agrifutures.com.au

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