Cotton Australia continuing its response to fish deaths
For the last two weeks, the Australian cotton industry has been under attack from critics of irrigation after the devastating fish deaths at Menindee.
Since the fish deaths issue arose, Cotton Australia has proactively engaged with journalists from ABC TV, SBS TV, the ABC’s Country Hour radio programs in NSW and Queensland, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Land, and the Triple M radio network, among others. We have also engaged with regional media, and Adam Kay’s opinion article was published in The Sydney Morning Herald.
There were also other opinion pieces supporting the industry published in The Australian Financial Review and The Australian newspapers.
Much of the debate on social media has been lacking key facts about Australian cotton and water regulation. Cotton Australia has worked to rectify that by engaging with journalists and publicly laying out the facts on social media around water regulation and how the industry works.
A core component of Cotton Australia’s strategy was to boost its digital output during the crisis. Our Facebook posts have reached over 380,000 people to date, and a series of infographics and videos are being produced informing of the facts.
Growers encouraged to share the facts on Australian cotton
Much of the debate on social media after the Menindee fish deaths has been lacking key facts about Australian cotton and water regulation.
Cotton Australia strongly encourages growers to share the facts and engage in positive, informative conversations about our industry both in person and on social media. As a united industry we can push back against our critics and show them we will not tolerate being the punching bag of Australian agriculture.
As part of our response, Cotton Australia is compiling a suite of informative resources and content for growers to refer to when responding to criticism of our industry.
Growers are encouraged to save and share the fact sheets Cotton Australia has posted on Facebook.
CGAs are also encouraged to take up Cotton Australia's offer of social media (basic and masterclass) workshops to hone their skills.
Picking underway in Queensland’s Central Highlands
Picking of the 2018/19 cotton crop in Queensland’s Central Highlands got underway last week.
It is forecast almost 16,000 hectares of cotton was grown in the Central Highlands this season, with about 80% planted in early August.
Approximately 12,500 hectares of cotton in the region will be irrigated, and approximately 3,000 hectares will be dryland cotton. This season's planting is well down on last season's due to reduced water availability.
Cotton weed app now available
A new cotton weed identification mobile app is available for download.
‘Weeds of Australian Cotton’ is a tool to help cotton growers and consultants identify 50 key weed species.
The app was developed as part of a CRDC-supported project, and can be downloaded from the iTunes and Google Play stores.
NSW growers: Cotton Picker Operation training on offer
Expressions of interest are open for NSW growers to participate in TAFE’s Cotton Picker Operation course.
The course is funded by AgSkilled for eligible NSW residents to participate in. The course will provide participants with the skills and knowledge they need to safely operate a picker and carry out basic picker maintenance. Courses will run subject to interest.
Improve your spray knowledge today
CottonInfo’s Regional Extension Officers have produced a handy resource for growers to consult prior to spraying.
With some valleys receiving patchy rain recently, weeds that will need attention could be growing.
Growers are encouraged to keep their knowledge of inversions and spraying best practice up to date by consulting the visual resource CottonInfo has produced.
Heavy Vehicle Chain of Responsibility - free online training available
As of October 1st, 2018, the Heavy Vehicle National Law (HVNL) was amended to ensure that everyone in the heavy vehicle transport supply chain, including primary producers, has a duty to ensure the safety of their transport activities.
This law change impacts everyone in the supply chain - drivers, employers, contractors, vehicle operators, loaders or unloaders of vehicles and consignees. This is also a new checklist item in the myBMP Work Health and Safety module.
AgSafe has developed a free 30-45 minute online training course in consultation with the Regulator of the Heavy Vehicle National Law and with assistance from the Australian Trucking Association and the Australian Logistics Council. Registrations close December 31st, 2019.