Farm-level adoption of biosecurity management – behavioural analysis

  • 48 pages

  • Published: 20 Dec 2023

  • Author(s): Clinton Muller, Emily Tee, Claire Cook, Jedidiah Clark, Doris Blaesing

  • ISBN: 978-1-76053-444-8

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AgriFutures Australia partners with Australian rural industries and the Australian Government to grow the long-term prosperity of Australian rural industries and communities through research, development and extension.

This report delves into the intricate landscape of Australia’s national biosecurity system, a linchpin in safeguarding our primary industries from the pervasive threats posed by pests and diseases. Australia’s biosecurity framework, jointly managed by the Australian Government and their state/territory counterparts, is a complex collaboration aimed at mitigating risks and ensuring the integrity of our agricultural sector. The stakes are high, with successful biosecurity implementation crucial for international market access, as well as for protecting regional and rural economies and communities. The study examined the adoption of biosecurity practices by producers, focusing on farmers, through a comprehensive analysis of existing research and consultations with key industry stakeholders.

Key findings underscore the strength of biosecurity awareness among commercial producers, however highlight variability in the extent of adoption across different sectors. They bring attention to the role of technology in biosecurity management, challenges in skills and capacity within the system, and the impacts of language and communication on biosecurity extension. The findings also shed light on the implications of biosecurity on individual producer wellbeing.

The recommendations are pivotal for shaping the future of our national biosecurity system. Decision makers across the system must consider the need for nuanced and targeted communication strategies tailored to specific industries and sectors. Recognising the importance of integrating biosecurity practices into broader production systems is crucial, as is acknowledging and addressing vulnerabilities in the current biosecurity framework. Moreover, fostering trust within the system is imperative for effective industry-wide adoption of biosecurity practices.

We invite industry stakeholders, producers and policymakers to explore the detailed findings and recommendations contained in this report. The insights presented herein offer a roadmap for enhancing the resilience and sustainability of Australia’s primary industries in the face of evolving biosecurity challenges.