Hardship grants offer for potato farmers

Headshot of Sarah Ison
Sarah IsonBusselton Dunsborough Times

Spring testing of the tomato potato psyllid infecting potatoes across the region has come back negative but with no end to export controls in sight, farmers are being asked to apply for assistance grants to ease economic hardship.

Since the discovery of TPP two years ago, WA growers have been locked out of Eastern States markets.

Since then and following on from market deregulation, farmers have repeatedly reported their ongoing economic struggle to the Times.

In response, a new $500,000 grants program was announced in early December by Agriculture and Food Minister Alannah MacTiernan to deliver “new opportunities” to farmers following “recent market access issues”.

Individual grants of between $50,000 and $200,000 are available for projects delivering “industry-wide benefits to the Western Australian potato industry”.

The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development reported more than 4000 TPP underwent spring testing for Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum and found the “bacteria (had) not been detected to date in WA”.

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