Sweet partnership between Queensland government and canegrowers

Cutting red tape and strengthening the partnership between canegrowers, stakeholders and the Queensland government is the aim of a new sugar industry sustainability deal announced today.

Canegrowers Mackay chairman Paul Schembri said that  is the expected result of the Best Management Practices agreement deal reported Daily Mercury.

"It is important, we think, to get the best outcome, regarding environmental sustainability for our industry and the community," Schembri said.

Schembri added a partnership is going to be much more helpful then more bureaucratic red tape which bogs farmers down with paperwork.

Ted Malone, LNP Member for Mirani said the government plans to work with the sugar cane industry to boost productivity and protect the Great Barrier Reef which is good news for growers.

"The agreement underpins the Government's plan to harness industry know-how with government-funded scientific research and education to protect the reef and build a sustainable and profitable agricultural industry," he said.

"Taking a best management practice approach by working with cane growers, rather than forcing them to fill in mounds of paperwork, has the potential to be more effective than regulation in protecting the Reef.

"(It) will address soil health and plant nutrition, pests, disease, weed management and integrated water system management in reef catchments."

Under the agreement, canegrowers will get $3.5 million to develop the plan.

"This is voluntary, but we are embracing it … the Government has given Canegrowers the power to develop region specific farming practices." Schembri said.