Forum told biosecurity partnerships essential | My Machinery
CASE Agriculture
Forum told biosecurity partnerships essential

Department of Agriculture and Food director general Rob Delane says strong partnerships are essential to ensure biosecurity systems are in place to safeguard Western Australia’s valuable agricultural sector. Addressing WA’s first State Biosecurity Forum held in Fremantle today, Mr Delane said effective biosecurity was more important than ever to allow WA’s agricultural industries to grow and prosper. “The potential of our agricultural sector cannot be maintained without an effective and efficient biosecurity commitment from all stakeholders,” Mr Delane said. “Good biosecurity measures depend on partnerships between industry members, and science and innovation institutes here, interstate and overseas, and governments at all levels.” Mr Delane told the forum that agricultural production today was more vulnerable than ever before to biosecurity risks because of increasing imports and exports, increasing movement of people and tighter profit margins. “In the past ten years, Quarantine WA has recorded a 77 per cent increase in interstate flights into WA, a 79 per cent increase in imported interstate plant lines which needed inspection and an 84 per cent increase in imported interstate livestock numbers,” Mr Delane said. “We have also had a 25 per cent increase in interstate freight containers, and a 42 per cent increase in quarantine risk material seized at our interstate border.” Mr Delane said good biosecurity was critical for a profitable agricultural sector, protecting against production and product quality losses from plant and animal pests and diseases. “It also reduces the costs of eradication and control, reducing dependence on chemicals,” he told the forum. “Biosecurity is a critical component of market access for Western Australia both interstate and overseas. “The reputation in domestic and overseas market places of WA’s produce is underpinned by a comprehensive $29 million quarantine and biosecurity system, developed and operated by the department. “We are continuing to evolve the department’s biosecurity systems to ensure WA is best equipped to protect rural businesses, food quality and integrity and capture new markets that benefit our State’s economy, businesses and community.”

Share this:

CASE Agriculture