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Dairy farmer says industry is facing a ‘real threat’

With 100 per cent of New South Wales and 60 per cent of Queensland now in drought, struggling farmers need the nation’s help.

“Drought, awful gate prices, ridiculous red tape clearing laws, water mismanagement, environmental rubbish. It does make my blood boil,” says Alan Jones.

“Tell you what, drought just etches at you, it corrugates your mind. I’ve been through it.”

Farmer Power CEO, and dairy farmer himself, Garry Kerr tells Alan, “our dairy industry is [facing a] real threat”.

At one point, Australia had 23,000 dairy farms. Now, there are as few as 6000.

Mr Kerr says importing milk from foreign nations is “a likely scenario”.

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While an inquiry into the farming industry saw recommendations from the ACCC, Alan says it’s “too far down the track”.

“We’ve got a here and now problem.

“We’ve got families breaking down, kids are writing to me worried about their dads.

“We’re talking about suicide.”

Mr Kerr says there needs to be “upward pressure on milk prices” for the farmers to succeed.

“They just need a fair go, Alan.”

He says there are two ways people can help.

“We need people to buy branded milk from the supermarket because that leaves their home brand on the shelves.

“Secondly, if they want to support dairy farmers direct, they can go to some of the boutique dairy farms”.