For one day of the year, the National Farmers Federation wants Australians to think about the food farmers produce and where it comes from.
The NFF says Australians enjoy the world-class food and fibre grown right here in Australia, but some Australians know very little about the farmers and workers who put food on their tables.
It said National Agriculture Day, which is held each year on the third Friday of November, was a chance to celebrate and learn about Australia’s incredible farm sector.
This year’s focus comes at a time when some parts of agriculture are making record profits while yet another climate crisis is affecting farmers facing unprecedented floods across three states.
Grace Brennan, the founder of Buy From The Bush, is calling on Australians to help in any way they can and celebrate rural Australians’ achievements.
“Farmers are the most passionate people I know: They don’t work to live; they live to work. It’s really in their blood.”
She said Australians had a big appetite for stories from the bush.
“As long as we can really bring it to life with inclusive storytelling, inviting people in [and] tell the story, not just when we’re struggling but when we’re celebrating what we’ve achieved.”
She said it was important to build the connections people have with rural Australia, especially for those moments when disaster strikes.
“When it comes to times of crisis, there will be a greater instinct to know how to support them in both pragmatic and symbolic ways.”
Australians are encouraged to hold barbecues today, share their photos of life on the land, and wear green to show their appreciation for farmers.
A major focus this year is Innovation.
Chief Executive Officer of CropLife Australia, the national peak industry organisation for the plant science sector, Mr Matthew Cossey, said science was important to meet the world’s need for more food.
“The world will have to double food production in the next few decades to meet the needs of a growing population.
“These days a job in agriculture can as easily be in a world-leading plant science laboratory as it can in a paddock, and that’s exciting,” Mr Cossey said.
The NFF’s Ag Day has linked with large finance companies who created a charity Big Dry Friday, which will raise money for rural charity Rural Aid, Schools Plus which aims to close the gap for disadvantaged students and mental health body Outback Futures.