Minister for Primary Industries, Fisheries, Rural and Regional Queensland Tim Mulherin said today he would spend next week speaking to Cyclone affected primary producers, small business and industry in North Queensland.
Mr Mulherin said he had been in constant contact with industry and growers, including the Australian Banana Growers Council, Canegrowers and Queensland Dairy Organisation, discussing the damage to crops from Cyclone Yasi.
“There is no doubt that crops in particular bananas and sugarcane have taken a considerable battering from Cyclone Yasi,” Mr Mulherin said.
“Initial industry feedback has indicated significant damage in the Tully and Innisfail regions, as well as on the Tablelands.
“It is early days and difficult to make accurate assessments about the extent of the losses, which is why industry has requested that we visit the affected regions to see the damage firsthand.
“I will spend next week speaking to growers, producers, industry, small business and local government in the affected regions including Cairns, Innisfail, Tully, Ingham, The Tablelands and Townsville.
“On the Tablelands we’ll be meeting with banana, mango, pawpaw and avocado growers, as well as holding discussions with the dairy and beef industries.
“In the Innisfail and Tully regions we will be inspecting cane and banana farms and discussing the assistance required to aid recovery.
“Community feedback will inform the type of assistance primary producers and small businesses will need to begin their recovery process,” he said.
Mr Mulherin said North Queensland is crucial to the Queensland economy, particularly agricultural sectors.
“We are committed to working with the people of North Queensland throughout the recovery process and providing the assistance required for primary producers and small businesses to get back on their feet.
“This summer has seen extraordinary weather events across Queensland with the majority of the state either affected by floods or Cyclone events.
“All the information received on these visits will be fed back into the Queensland Reconstruction Authority to inform the recovery process.”