(Issued by Department of Agriculture)
Efforts to shield Australia from the devastating impact of exotic pests and diseases take a front seat with the opening of nominations for the 2020 Australian Biosecurity Awards.
Department of Agriculture acting Deputy Secretary Peta Lane said the annual awards are an important recognition of those making vital contributions to protecting our enviable biosecurity status.
“Our biosecurity system is a significant national asset that safeguards us from a range of significant threats,” Ms Lane said.
“The system supports our way of life, not to mention around $60 billion in agricultural production, $49 billion in agricultural exports and our $42 billion inbound tourism industry—all vital contributors to jobs and growth, particularly in regional and rural Australia.
“It is important to recognise those who provide vital contributions to our pest and disease free status.
“Last year’s award winners included cattle producer Melinee Leather, who is a strong advocate for the importance of biosecurity practices to the long-term viability of individual businesses and the beef industry as a whole.
“Also recognised was Yarra Valley strawberry grower and industry leader Luciano Corallo, who applies best practice biosecurity measures across his farm and sets an exceptional biosecurity standard for the entire strawberry industry.
“I encourage anyone who knows a biosecurity champion to nominate them so they can get the national recognition they deserve.”
The Australian Biosecurity Awards recognise individuals, groups and organisations that show a strong commitment to working collaboratively with the Department of Agriculture to support and promote Australia's biosecurity.
There are four award categories in 2020: the Australian Biosecurity Award – Industry; the Australian Biosecurity Award – Government; the David Banks Biosecurity Lifetime Achievement Award; and the Farm Biosecurity Producer of the Year Award supported by Animal Health Australia and Plant Health Australia.
Nominations for the awards open on 28 October 2019 and close on 6 December 2019.