AGRICULTURE comes to town this week when primary producers from across the state head to Brisbane for the Ekka.
Each year the event showcases the best of the Queensland rural industry and has long been touted as bringing a little bit of the country to the city.
But the Ekka is much more than that.
Not only is the event a time to see the latest in industry technology, to view the best livestock genetics in the world and to catch up with friends, it is also an opportunity for key issues to be discussed and debated at all levels of industry.
Throughout the course of the Ekka many meetings and discussions will take place, both of an official and informal nature. These will include everything from chats among producers in the bar or the livestock sheds to formal appointments between AgForce representatives and State Cabinet.
There is no doubt hot topics this year will include vegetation management, tenure and leasehold rents, native title, coal seam gas, land access, wild dog management and cost of production.
Let's take the opportunity at this annual event to flesh out these issues and collaborate to find solutions.
The Ekka is also a time to celebrate our remarkable successes. The AgForce-hosted Queensland Red Meat Awards will take place this week to recognise the achievements of standout beef and sheep meat production.
Let's use events like the Ekka as a trust-building exercise for city consumers.
Time and time again polls and surveys have shown primary producers are respected members of society so let's capitalise on this foundation and build trust in our food supply chain.
By being visible at events like the Ekka and available to talk to consumers about food supply, as well as politicians and corporates about industry issues, we place ourselves in good stead to provide security for our industry's future.