Australian Farmers Leverage Adaptation and Innovation Against Climate Change

Recently, the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) released its latest report, echoing one of our core beliefs – the enduring resilience and adaptability of the Australian farming community.

Resiliency Against Climate Threats

There’s no denying the toll climate change has been taking on Australian agriculture. Farmers are grappling with soaring temperatures and dwindling winter rainfall, making it increasingly challenging to maintain productive yields. Yet, in true Aussie spirit, farmers are pushing back against these challenges with resilience and innovation.

According to the latest ABARES report, climate-adjusted productivity in Australia’s broadacre industries has witnessed an annual growth rate of 0.6% from 1988–89 to 2021–22. In the face of climate vulnerability, grain production industries displayed an impressive annual productivity increase of 1.4%.

Necessity Fuelling Innovation

Despite a challenging climate, productivity growth hasn’t been hampered – a testament to the adaptability and tenacity of our farmers. Notably, this success has not been achieved by chance or simple weather endurance alone.

“Significant advancements in technology and management practices were essential in achieving this result and we need that to continue,” shares Dr Jared Greenville, ABARES Executive Director.

Confirming the integral role of continual investment in research and development, ABARES reports have found that every dollar invested in these fields yields approximately eight times that in agricultural Gross Value Added.

The Trend towards Larger Farm Businesses

An additional finding from the ABARES report points towards an ongoing shift in business size within the agricultural sector. The last three years to 2021–22 have seen a trend of fewer but larger farm businesses. The most significant 10% of broadacre farms now contribute around half of the total output, while the smallest half only produces around 10% of the total.

This shift in farm size has significant implications, driving the industry’s performance more than ever. As farm size and output continue to grow in tandem, the influence of larger farms on industry trends and success will undoubtedly increase.

At The Lucas Group, we understand the challenges of operating in an evolving agricultural landscape and offer support to all our peers irrespective of farm size or production style. We celebrate the resilience and innovation that our Australian farmers continue to showcase and are committed to sustainable and adaptable farming practices.

For dedicated partners in a world of changing demands and expectations, remember, we grow together.

Sources: Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, ABARES, ABARES

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