Assistance secured for storm-hit apple industry

26 Nov 2018

Adelaide Hills apple growers affected by recent storms will be able to access a range of assistance measures made available by the Australian Government.

Liberal candidate for Mayo Georgina Downer said the Government had acted quickly in support of South Australia’s apple industry.

“After speaking with growers whose crops had been severely damaged by the storms last week I immediately drew the storms to the attention of the Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, David Littleproud,” Ms Downer said.

“Adelaide Hills growers affected by storm damage now have access to a range of assistance measures the Government usually provides for farmers and rural communities affected by drought.

“These include the Farm Household Allowance, which is designed to help recipients meet basic household needs. The net farm asset limit is now $5 million (up from $2.6 million), which increases access to the payment for farmers who may have substantial assets but no income to meet daily expenses. I encourage any farmer experiencing hardship to contact their local Rural Financial Counsellor to immediately discuss an application. Applications submitted before 1 December may also enable eligible recipients to receive a supplementary payment of up to $12,000 announced by the Coalition Government in August 2018.

“Farm Investment Loans and Drought Loans of up to $2 million will be made available through the Government’s $2 billion Regional Investment Corporation (RIC), and growers will also have access to free rural financial counselling.

“In my conversations with growers they’ve indicated they want to get their operations back up and running as soon as possible. The Coalition Government has streamlined and simplified the application processes for financial assistance so farmers can get back on their feet sooner rather than later.

“Some growers are under enough stress as it is without having to deal with complex loan applications.

“It’s great to see the Morrison Government move quickly to help growers, and I note the South Australian Government has also responded swiftly to the crisis.

“We all must work together to assist our iconic Adelaide Hills apple industry in its time of need.”