FACEBOOK, Instagram and Twitter will be deluged with a torrent of messages promoting the Riverina’s food production as part of an audacious stunt by a group of farmers.
The Speak Up campaign, launched this month by Southern Riverina Irrigators, calls on the region’s farmers to share personal stories on social media about growing food with irrigation water.
It comes as the future-defining Murray Darling Basin Plan and low water allocations threaten the viability of the family irrigation farm.
The aim of the campaign is to educate the public in a bid to exert pressure on politicians to place a higher priority on food production and food security.
Deniliquin rice farmer Shelley Scoullar, who is behind the campaign, said it was launched out of frustration at the inability of producers to take advantage of a potentially first class season.
“The season is looking fantastic with excellent crops, but unless we have rain or can give them a final watering this could drastically change within weeks,” she said.
“At present no water from the dams has been allocated to food production … available water is being held for environmental flows.”
Burrinjuck and Blowering Dam are currently at 66 per cent and 44 per cent respectively.
Griffith rice farmer Chint Quarisa said food security was an issue for all Australians.
“The recent berry scare is just the tip of the iceberg,” he said.
“If people in the cities don’t care about food security, they’ll get all their food from Asia that has no control and no traceability.”
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