Grain Producers Australia and Plant Health Australia are highlighting the importance of biosecurity protections, while urging growers to utilise free resources to help safeguard their farming properties, such as the Farm Biosecurity Plan for Grain Producers.
The Grains Farm Biosecurity Program has developed the easy to follow, logical and informative biosecurity planner template, to assist growers with improving the biosecurity status of their farm.
PHA’s team of Grains Farm Biosecurity Officers throughout the major grain producing regions are available to growers to support the distribution of the planner and other tools to strengthen biosecurity protections.
GPA Chair and WA grain producer, Barry Large said, when it comes to biosecurity, complacency is never an option and there are no short-cuts.
“That’s why GPA takes biosecurity seriously and works with PHA to support our industry with the delivery of practical tools that help strengthen on-farm protections for growers,” he said.
“This includes the Farm Biosecurity Plan for Grain Producers which provides an easy to follow guide, with proactive steps and actions to follow, to reduce the risk of pests and diseases.
“The Plan provides important resources such as templates for hygienic grain storage and monitoring, and checklists for visitors and vehicles when entering the farm.
“All growers and farm managers are encouraged to use this Farm Biosecurity Plan and other practical tools provided by PHA to boost biosecurity protections and safeguards for your business.”
Victorian based Grains Farm Biosecurity Officer, Jim Moran said, it was important to discuss, develop and own your property’s biosecurity plan, to give the best chance of avoiding unwelcome visitors.
“Take control of who and what comes onto your property and when, where they can access,” he said.
Mr Moran said numerous pests, weeds and diseases which can easily establish at a growers’ property, are either at a neighbour’s property (public or private), a neighbouring district or State, or are currently exotic and on Australia’s doorstep, in countries we visit and trade with.
“The best way to defend against future incursions and to avoid current problems getting worse, is to do some thinking around your biosecurity effort,” he said.
Mr Moran said it was important to develop a biosecurity plan that describes;
· Your current threat risk and preparedness level with a quick and easy, self-assessment questionnaire.
· The priority risks you can realistically address in 1, 3 and 5 years.
· The tactics, tasks and actions needed to address these risks. As well as who and what is needed to assist.
· A regular review process to check what’s working and what is not.
“Farm biosecurity planning is not a one size fits all process. Nor does it have to be complicated or expensive. Every farm is different, with each facing a unique set of challenges and risks and business owners having different levels of tolerance of those risks and ability to address them.”
Access the Farm Biosecurity Plan for Grain Producers HERE
If you see anything unusual, call the exotic plant pest hotline 1800 084 881.