New cane changer project for the sugar industry

DOING THEIR BIT: Cane farmers are setting the record straight with new project.
DOING THEIR BIT: Cane farmers are setting the record straight with new project. Tony Martin

QUEENSLAND farmers are helping to set the record straight as part of an initiative that recognises sugarcane growers for their positive farming practices and contribution to protecting the Great Barrier Reef.

Project Cane Changer is a Canegrowers initiative helping the sugar industry to embrace continued innovation and best management practice.

Funded by the Department of Environment and Science, the project first rolled out in the Innisfail district in February 2017, led locally by the Innisfail Canegrowers board chaired by Joseph Marano.

"Growers in Innisfail have really embraced the project,” he said.

"It is a different way of encouraging the public to understand the sugarcane industry in Innisfail.”

A year on, more than 180 growers representing all six cane growing districts in the wet tropics have now signed their own Cane Changer Commitment, which asks them to detail farming practices they have changed over the years and to commit to making further changes in line with best management practices. Project leader John Pickering said these commitments were an important way to demonstrate the industry's positive response to farming practice change. "Talking with growers we hear all the time about the positive changes they have made over the years. These commitments provide a way to further tell that story,” he said.

"Cane Changer is setting the record straight about the industry and we encourage all growers to participate to help make the story stronger.”

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Topics:  canegrowers great barrier reef john pickering joseph marano project cane changer