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Don’t forget to check-in on your farming mates to ask how they’re going with taking care of themselves and the safety of their own farming business.

That’s the message being shared by Grain Producers Australia Chair, Barry Large, to help launch Farm Safety Week 2022 which runs from July 18-24.

“GPA understands the broader responsibilities we have representing Australia’s grain producers and we take these responsibilities very seriously,” he said.

“That’s why we’ve committed to real action with farm safety and mental health awareness programs that make a genuine difference for not only our members but all farmers and our communities.

“Farm Safety Week is an opportunity to remind everyone about the importance of these areas to the vitality of our own businesses and our personal lives.

“Whilst we know it’s important to be vigilant on our farms to maintain productivity, it’s just as important to give yourself a break and check-in with your mates and see how they’re going.”

As part of Farm Safety Week 2022, GPA Training is hosting a webinar on Tuesday to help with farm safety preparedness. The online event will see a panel discussion held with representatives from Safework NSW, Workplace Health and Safety Queensland and the Victorian Farmers Federation.

The ‘When the Safety Regulator Arrives’ webinar will be hosted by Andrew Barrett, Chief Connector at Safety on Tap and former Executive Officer of the Rural Safety & Health Alliance.

GPA Southern Director, Mark Schilling, farms at Cunliffe on northern Yorke Peninsula in SA, and said GPA Training provided new programs, such as a grain site delivery induction, that are helping farmers improve standards and practices, with easy access to online learnings.

“GPA Training is designed by farmers and industry professionals, for use by farmers – that’s why it’s practical and efficient to use, including for our workers,” he said.

“If we’re going to be proactive and change statistics that don’t reflect well on our industry – such as farmers comprising 2.2 per cent of Australia’s workforce but accounting for 13pc of injuries at work – we need to get serious and embrace GPA Training as an industry solution.”

Mr Large said GPA’s Farmer Mates Mental Health initiative will see inaugural ambassador and Australian cricketing legend, Brad Hogg, attend a number of field days throughout Australia in August, and was another example of GPA taking real action and leadership on important issues.

GPA’s partnership with Rural Aid, Lifeline and Nufarm will allow Brad to share his personal story and messages about the importance of mental health and suicide prevention at events throughout Australia, as the inaugural ambassador of the Farmer Mates Mental Health initiative.

“One of the main messages we want to share with other farmers is the importance of mates talking to mates and doing what we can to look out for each other,” Mr Large said.

“This is not only important during Farm Safety Week but every day we should be embracing these messages where and when we can and looking out for our mates. As farmers we always work hard but it’s also vitally important to remind ourselves that it’s just as important to take a break.”

Mr Large said GPA’s industry leadership and commitment to real action also included a world-first Code of Practice for Agricultural Mobile Field Machinery with Autonomous Functions.

“This is helping to enable future access to a rapidly emerging technology that will deliver real productivity gains for growers and the industry,” he said.

“This Code is supporting the delivery of this new machinery with safety at the forefront and it will also help alleviate other pressures for those farmers who are experiencing labour shortages.”

Mr Large said these safety focussed programs add to GPA’s longstanding responsibilities on biosecurity. This work helps safeguard Australian grain producers and boosts protections against the devastating social and economic impacts of exotic pests such as Khapra beetle.

GPA’s Code of Practice for Agricultural Mobile Field Machinery with Autonomous Functions is a joint project with the Society of Precision Agriculture Australia, and the Tractor and Machinery Association of Australia, involving continuous industry and government collaboration.

When the Safety Regulator Arrives Webinar

Tuesday 19 July – 10.30 AWST, 12.00 ACST, 12.30 AEST (online)

Register to attend: HERE

Brad Hogg event dates for GPA’s Farmer Mates Mental Health Partnership

August 3 - Mallee Machinery Field Days – Speed, Victoria – with Victorian Farmers Federation Making Our Farms Safer Team.

August 9 - Eyre Peninsula Field Days – Cleve SA – with Grain Producers SA.

August 12 - Mingenew Midwest Export – with WAFarmers.

August 17 - AgQuip Gunnedah – with NSW Farmers.

Farm Safety Week 2022 'Recipe for Averting Disaster' DETAILS HERE



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