Lucerne Australia – An Overview

Warrick Thorpe discusses the role of Lucerne Australia in his position as chairman.

Lucerne seed production is a unique industry with only five major production areas in the world, the Upper South East of South Australia being one of those. Lucerne Australia was formed in 2005 following community meetings which identified that the industry needed a united voice to be listened to by decision makers. Lucerne is a rewarding but challenging crop to grow.

Lucerne Australia provides the forum to tackle industry issues that farmers haven’t the time to address on an individual basis. The future of the industry is good so long as those involved work together.

This is another video supported by the Social Media in Agriculture project funded by Australian Government’s Caring for our Country initiative.

Lucerne Australia formed back in October 2005, after a few community meetings. It was bought about from a lot of different growers and people in the industry raising issues I suppose on individual basis, and not being recognized properly. The advantage of forming Lucerne Australia is now that we do have a voice that is recognized It’s a very unique industry in that there’s only probably five places in the world that grow lucerne seed.

One of those major places is Keith in South Australia. We’re small in comparison to a lot of other commodities. It’s worth a lot to the local communities. That can be a very rewarding crop to grow, but it’s also has lots of challenges. Having a body like Lucerne Australia, people can come and share their thoughts, combine ideas, and tackle a few issues that everyday farmers like ourselves are running around, busy being farmers, haven’t got the time to take on some of the responsibilities that we’d like to.

The level we pay into the government pool in the pasture seeds, we contribute a reasonable amount to that. So without a body like Lucerne Australia, we just wouldn’t have access to those funds and get the results that we do. Like any farmer industry group, is that you’ll always get a group of people that will support you 110% and seem to carry a lot of the others that are happy to take the results if we can engage those people in some way to build on it and we’ve a good thing.

Building a Foundation for Lucerne Australia Members

Luceme Australia’s definitely here for the long haul. We’ve just been three, probably the three toughest years on record. The industry’s are approximately probably thirty or so years old, so that’s not an old industry, and if we can get through the last three years that we have. The future although, is gonna take a fair bit of rebuilding to get along.

The advantage of having like Lucerne Australia is we have got that foundation base in our members which is what it’s all about. If we can build on what the industry can do, what our successes are those sort of things. I think we’re in for a pretty good time ahead.