Agriculture Investment in the GMID
Agricultural Investments is a key objective of the Goulburn Murray Irrigation District. With over 27,000 kilometres spanning over municipalities of Greater Shepparton, Swan Hill, Campaspe, Moira, Gannawarra and Loddon and accommodating a population of over 160,000 people, this is an ideal place to invest.
Irrigation-based industries including dairy, horticulture and viticulture; dry land farming operations; and agriculture-related industries such as food processing, packaging, transport and specialist engineering and electrical trades provide employment for many of the region's 84,000-strong workforce.
Click to view the video introduction to the region
View an interactive map of the GMID region
Running a dairy operation has just become a whole lot easier for Leitchville farmer Graham Douglas.
Through the On Farm Efficiency Program, 68 ha of his 129 ha farm has been laid out with 2.2km of black brute pipe and 32 risers, all controlled by a fully automated computer program, irrigation has become a whole lot easier.
“These works mean I can throw away the shovel,” Graham laughs.
“This whole program is a step in the right direction for the farming community. Five years ago I was sceptical about pumping water because I could gravitate but this is the only way the Government should be getting water, and that’s through programs like this.
“There is no way we could have ever afforded these works without the On Farm Efficiency Program.”
While Graham is no stranger to automation (he rigged up his own system back in the 90’s that was 100 per cent reliable) the installation of black brute means channel maintenance and blow outs are now a thing of the past.
Paddocks are watered one at a time with a full stream of water down each lasered bay.
A quarter of the farm is sown down to lucerne- two varieties one for grazing and one for hay production and some summer pasture.
“My overall aim is for the cows to be grazing on half pasture and the rest lucerne. We will be running all our young stock here and this new system will help carry us into the future.”
“I trust our new automated system 100 per cent. I just have to check to make sure I have my watering times for the different bays correct and once that’s right, everything will be done through the computer.”
Graham admits he is no expert on the computer but he is learning his way around and after a couple of emergency calls to the computer technician, he has got things pretty much under control.
The Douglas’ are hoping the rest of the farm will be upgraded through Stage
Tatura Milk Industries looks set to expand their Tatura facility to the tune of $7.8 million due to increased market opportunities in the Middle East. The expansion will generate additional employment opportunities in the area and will see production of cream cheese at the factory increase from 15,000 to 22,000 tonnes per annum.
The Tatura facility has been producing cream cheese and specialty frozen milk-fat ingredients for more than 30 years, and exports dairy products to key markets in the Gulf region, including the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia.
Tatura Milk Industries is a wholly owned subsidiary of Bega Cheese andCEO Aidan Coleman said the expansion had been a 12 month project in the making. He said it would further drive innovation and export outcomes for the dairy company “This news follows on from our purchase and investment in the former Kraft site at Strathmerton, which has significantly increased our production capacity in northern Victoria,” Mr Coleman said.
Minister for Agriculture and Food Security Peter Walsh said Victorian exports of dairy product to the Middle East and North African regions have grown by almost 18 per cent since 2009 and were worth $272 million. “Victoria accounts for 87 per cent of the value of Australia’s dairy exports and has a reputation second to none in terms of both quality and quantity of product available,” Mr Walsh said. “Bega Cheese’s Tatura facility will need an extra 30 to 40 million litres of milk per year once the expansion is running at full capacity in three years. This will be a great boost to northern Victoria’s dairy producers.”
Victorian Minister for Innovation, Services and Small Business Louise Asher said the announcement is a clear sign of the strength of Victoria’s dairy industry, and in particular, the opportunities present for our clean, safe and reliable dairy exports to the Middle East region.”
Bega Cheese joined more than 100 other companies and organisations in strategic industries including food and beverage, agribusiness, infrastructure and water management on a Victorian Coalition Government trade mission to the Middle East.