Dairy focus for water minister’s visit

By Country News

The dairy industry is expected to be a key focus of Federal Water and Agriculture Minister David Littleproud’s Shepparton visit this week, with no plans to hold a water-focused event.

With the Murray-Darling Basin Plan continuing to be a concern to local farmers and irrigators, the topic is expected to be raised at the community forum on Wednesday.

Mr Littleproud and Federal Member for Murray Damian Drum will host the forum, with farmers given the opportunity to address questions to both MPs.

As part of his visit to Shepparton, Mr Littleproud hopes to meet with dairy company Freedom Foods representatives, and will visit two farms — a dairy farm and a broadacre cropping property.

A meeting will also be held with AMB Fruits Industry to discuss the business, which processes second-grade fruit and apples to turn them into other products including dehydrated apple chips.

Mr Littleproud’s visit on Wednesday will be the third time he has visited the Goulburn Valley region since taking over the portfolio in December last year.

A meeting between Mr Littleproud, the Speak Up Campaign and the Murray Regional Strategy Group will take place in Deniliquin on Thursday afternoon.

■The community forum will be held in function room one at the Eastbank Centre, Welsford St, Shepparton from 11am to 1.15pm on Wednesday, October 31.

■To RSVP, email: damian.drum.mp@aph.gov.au