Floods cause farmers to lose millions in stock, crops

Farmers have suffered stock and crop losses because of ex-cyclone Oswald.
Farmers have suffered stock and crop losses because of ex-cyclone Oswald. Craig Warhurst

MILLIONS of dollars have been lost by primary producers in Queensland and northern New South Wales as AgForce lobbies state and federal governments for help after they faced down ex-cyclone Oswald.

AgForce Queensland general president Ian Burnett was due to have a face-to-face meeting with Queensland Agricultural Minister John McVeigh on Tuesday afternoon to discuss the challenges still emerging across the state.

Canegrowers, Growcom, Queensland Farmers Federation plus seafood and timber industries would join the conversation.

Mr Burnett told APN before the meeting it the worst damage was copped by Boyne Valley west of Gladstone, the Upper Burnett region including Monto, Mundubra and Gayndah all the way down to Bundaberg and further south.

"That area east of the Great Dividing Range has been pretty hard hit," Mr Burnett said.

"There are crops that have been inundated and crops that have been shot in the head by the extended rain period.

"They've been downgraded with a loss of quality."

Mr Burnett said mung beans, sorghum and cotton crops were particularly hurt, but the cattle industry was no better off.

"The big losses are in livestock," he said.

"Reports are coming in that quite a number of cattle has been lost."

Those herds in the Fitzroy region near Rockhampton, he said, seemed to fare better because they had warnings of what was coming.

Others were not so lucky, with cattle and pigs both caught in the rising waters.

Mr Burnett was now pushing Mr McVeigh and federal equivalent Joe Ludwig to deliver some rescue packages in the form of grants or low-interest loans.

Mr McVeigh told APN he would travel to the Scenic Rim on Tuesday afternoon as a first-stop on his tour of affected regions.

"Once flood waters subside and a full assessment has been conducted, we will have a better understanding of the extent of damage to crops, stock, farmland, fences, roads and buildings," he said.

Topics:  ex-cyclone, farmers, floods



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