Newspaper article The Northern Star (Lismore, Australia)

Ham-Strung Farmers

Newspaper article The Northern Star (Lismore, Australia)

Ham-Strung Farmers

Article excerpt

Byline: Andy Parks andy.parks@northernstar.com.au

A HUGE downturn in piggeries in the Lismore area is being blamed on cheap imports, State Government regulation and an unwillingness to take on struggling businesses.

An economic profile prepared for Lismore council showed the value of pig-related agriculture in the Lismore LGA fell from $20million in 2005/06 to $2million in 2010/11.

"I don't think it's too hard to extrapolate that a loss of $18million means there are a lot of jobs involved," the council's business facilitator Mark Batten said.

"For me, this is a disaster for our local economy."

The profile, based on Australian Bureau of Statistics data, also showed a $9million drop in the nut industry for the same period.

"I think that's a global market conversation rather than a local market one, but it shows the whims that (farmers) are exposed to," Mr Batten said.

With Christmas comes a spike in ham sales, but some butchers are finding it harder to source it locally. …

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