CALLING ALL FARMERS: Local Land Services want farmers to complete an important survey so they provide assistance in times of disaster and emergency.
CALLING ALL FARMERS: Local Land Services want farmers to complete an important survey so they provide assistance in times of disaster and emergency.

Why our farmers need to fill out this critical census

FARMERS are being urged to complete an important census to help the NSW Government assist them in the case of future disasters.

Local Land Services says landholders should keep an eye out for Annual Land and Stock Returns which are landing in mailboxes this week.

LLS business partner, Emergency Management, Dr Steve Eastwood, said the annual returns were a statutory requirement and the data provided ensures LLS customers get the help they need when emergencies or disasters strike.

“We’re urging landholders to complete their Annual Land and Stock Return online, because that’s the quickest way to ensure we can respond swiftly and accurately when needed,” he said.

“Landholders can help us help them in an emergency or biosecurity event.”

Dr Eastwood said the North Coast LLS region has done it really tough in the past few years.

“With floods in 2017 and of course bushfires across a massive area from the Tweed to south of Port Macquarie last autumn and summer,” he said.

“Information provided through Annual Land and Stock Returns proved to be essential in getting help to people in those disasters and we need landholders to do those returns again, because of course emergencies will occur again.”

Dr Eastwood said LLS understands farmers are facing challenging times.

“I realise it may be an emotional time for some on the north coast to do this, particularly those cattle producers who were significantly impacted by the fires,” he said.

“And it’s not just livestock producers, but we need to hear from the region’s horticulture industries for instance, the macadamia, avocado, berry and banana growers, because it all helps to build that important picture of agriculture in NSW at this moment in time.

“Unfortunately, emergencies and biosecurity outbreaks don’t discriminate whether you have stock or not and cropping enterprises are susceptible to pests and diseases just like livestock industries.”

“We understand circumstances change over a 12 month period, and after a hard few years, reporting livestock figures can be confronting, especially when landholders have destocked due to drought, fire or flood,” Dr Eastwood said.

Visit www.lls.nsw.gov.au/alsr