Queensland’s agricultural production systems and supply chain partners are continually exposed to natural disasters. These events impact on agricultural systems through the loss of livestock, crops and produce; damage to infrastructure, equipment and buildings; damage to standing crops; and erosion of land and waterways.
Like other sectors of the economy, agriculture can also be impacted by the loss of electricity supply and communication services; and community infrastructure particularly transport infrastructure.
Natural disasters can increase stress and emotional strain for landholders further adding to the physical damage these events can cause.
As agriculture continues to intensify, becomes more reliant on mechanisation and supply chains more integrated, the impact of natural disasters is likely to increase.
QFF has managed the relief and recovery of several severe natural disasters including Cyclones Larry (2006) and Yasi (2011), the 2011 Queensland floods, flooding associated with Cyclone Oswald (2013), Cyclone Marcia (2015), Cyclone Debbie (2017), the North and Far North Queensland Monsoon flooding event, and the long term drought. Our role in these events has been to manage the industry recovery program, ensuring landholders can access the information, advice and support they need to recover. Learn more about QFF’s projects in natural disaster resilience and recovery HERE.
Natural Disaster Resilience
Planning and preparing for a natural disaster is equally important work that complements the recovery work QFF undertakes. Natural disaster resilience planning projects are critical to the agricultural sector’s response to natural disasters. QFF has taken a leading national role in the delivery of natural disaster resilience with state and national projects aiming to reduce the impact of natural disasters on the agricultural sector through improved preparedness. The work conducted in this area is also predicted to have flow-on effects for supply chain partners and consumers.
Natural Disaster Farmer Support
Natural disasters is available on a purpose-built QFF website: farmerdisasertsupport.org.au. The site has a simple postcode and industry search function that provides a one stop shop of all industry specific, local, state, federal and not-for-profit assistance available in your local area.
The service is designed for farmers from all industries and is designed to save time and frustration in the aftermath of an event. This site has been built by industry for industry to get farmers back on their feet and better prepared for the next event.
Risk Management – Insurance
QFF is also researching agricultural insurance and its use as a risk management tool. Currently, agricultural insurance only covers about 1-2 per cent of agriculture. Through research project with universities, the CSIRO, the insurance industry and the agricultural sector, we aim to highlight the opportunities for insurance by educating farmers, industry and governments on agricultural insurance, assisting in product development, and continuing to research innovative ways to increase its market presence in Queensland and Australia.