Member for Cowper Luke Hartsuyker, this week welcomed delegates from the Texas Farm Bureau to Parliament House to discuss issues of mutual interest, including the challenges and opportunities for farmers in northern NSW.
“The delegation is on a fact finding tour of Australia to discuss common problems and shared goals,” Mr Hartsuyker said.
“The Texas Farm Bureau has around 500,000 members. The fact that this delegation chose to visit Australia is a clear indicator that Australia is seen as a world-leader in agricultural policy and technology.
“During our meeting, we discussed a range of important issues, including the challenges of dealing with pests, the importance of reducing barriers to international trade, Australia’s exceptional agricultural research and development organisations, and the global task of ensuring healthy honey bee populations.
“We also discussed the challenges of delivering the infrastructure and services rural communities need. Texas is the largest mainland US state, and is only slightly smaller than NSW, so we both understand the need for modern infrastructure and communications services for agricultural productivity.
“Like our farmers in northern NSW, Texas farmers are also dependent on trade. Continued efforts to liberalise trade are vital for the growth and sustainability of Australian agriculture,” Mr Hartsuyker said.
The delegation has also met with Australian farming groups and agricultural agencies in Sydney and Canberra. Later this week they will tour a range of Australian farming operations on the Queensland Darling Downs.
Two-way trade in agricultural products between Australia and the US was $7.8 billion (AUD) in 2015. Key Australian exports to the US include beef, lamb, goat meat, and wine.