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TAS Country : March 17th 2011
4 Tasmanian Country Friday, March 18, 2011 News Time for passengers to pay fare SPUD SPAT: The TFGA took on Simplot. We're fighting in your corner in the constant battle with the major supermarkets and processors on commodity prices.' TFGA matters with Jan Davis HEAVEN forbid that I should use a football club as a role model for farmers. It may compound the felony by naming the Carlton Football Club as that role model. Carlton's motto for 2011 is ''No Passengers''. For supporters, that means it is not good enough to sit on the sidelines and cheer; if you want the club to succeed then you must put your money where your mouth is. I see a very strong correlation between ''No Passengers'' and the imperative for farmers to support their membership body, the Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association. The TFGA has scored a lot of goals for the farming community. Unfortunately, too often this has been to the benefit of those who ride along on our coat-tails without making the commitment of TFGA membership. The latest example was our renegotiation of the Simplot potato supply contract, a $20 per tonne ''out of hours'' price increase that benefits the 200 farmers who supply Simplot with potatoes. Only half of those 200 are TFGA members. The other half are passengers or, more harshly, free-loaders. As the negotiating committee pointed out in an open letter to Tasmanian Country:''itis disappointing to our group that only approximately half of the contracted growers support this committee through a 0.53 per cent levy on paid tonnes (which is only a $1.69/tonne). ''The amended contract will deliver an additional injection of over $6 million dollars at the farm gate for growers, or close to $15,000 for an average grower.'' In the Australian vernacular, that is not a fair go. As well as the Simplot deal, in recent times the TFGA has gained: an estimated $500,000 disaster assistance for flood-affected farmers; $200,000 State Government funding to the TFGA for irrigation projects; $220,000 NBN funding to deliver information and demonstration projects; and $120,000 State Government funding to deliver the vegetable industry strategic plan. Meanwhile, our 24/7 service to farmers continues -- and this is often less visible and harder to put a dollar value on. We're fighting in your corner in the constant battle with the major supermarkets and processors on commodity prices; we keep pressure on all three tiers of government to ensure that the rural sector prospers; we continuously lobby MPs and parliamentary committees on rural policy; we support the work of our national peak bodies; and we've been vocal in highlighting the creeping threat of shutdown to farm forestry. We need your assistance and we need it now. Leaders must lead by example, but they are hamstrung if the whole supporter base does not put their hands in their pockets and sign up. Own a bright future Our dealers are sweating. But it s nothing to do with the weather. The fact is there s never been a better time to buy a New Holland, with massive offers across our full tractor range. Your local dealer will work hard to give you a great deal, including finance. But if you can t find him when you pop into the New Holland showroom don t worry. He hasn t run away. He s probably just changing his shirt. Tractoriffic deals unfolding all summer NEWHOLL0171_TC
March 10th 2011
March 24th 2011