Friday, June 21, 2024

foodpro to support farming charity Aussie Helpers

Food manufacturing industry event, foodpro, has announced organisation Aussie Helpers as its charity partner for 2023.

foodpro will support Aussie Helpers in their efforts to fundraise and give back to farming communities.

“Australian farmers are a hugely important part of the food manufacturing supply chain, and as the feedstock to our industry, we want to support them where we can,” says foodpro Product Manager Felicity Parker.

Aussie Helpers CEO Tash Kocks, says with back-to-back years of La Nina and flooding, and rains finally coming to an end, the onslaught of El Nino for farmers will be just as challenging, if not more so.

“Aussie farmers are tough and resilient; they know there’s no such thing as a perfect climate forecast,” she says.

“But a drought during the current economic climate could see many Australian families, already struggling with the cost of living, pay even higher prices for their groceries.

“Many Aussies, including farmers, will go without. If property values drop with the drought and farmers are unable to service their loans due to macro-economic conditions, some farmers will be forced off their land, impacting our food security.

“As farmers are working hard to prepare for El Nino, we’re also preparing by strengthening our services and our relationships with farming communities.”

Ms Parker adds that it’s more imperative than ever that food manufacturers and suppliers to the industry, recognise and support rural based businesses.

“Via the partnership with Aussie Helpers, we are looking to raise awareness and funds to support the future of the agricultural sector, which is vital to the operation of food manufacturing in Australia,” she says.

“The innovations and machinery showcased at foodpro will improve efficiencies at the plant level, however, factories will not operate without the vital inputs provided by farmers for meat, dairy, grain and so on.”

Aussie Helpers has provided support directly to farmers for 21 years and has created lasting connections with rural communities across Australia. To date, the charity says it has helped 18,000 farmers, saved 10,000 livestock, organised 210,000 litres of water to be delivered and raised more than $50 million dollars in aid.

“Many farmers struggle in silence,” says Ms Kocks. “They are more likely to experience depression and anxiety and are almost twice as likely to die of suicide when compared to the general population.

“Almost one third of farmers have reported a decline in their mental health over the past few years [National Farmers Federation, 2023].

“Shockingly, it’s estimated that one Aussie farmer dies of suicide every 10 days.

“The impact on farming families and communities is huge, which is why all Aussie Helpers’ team members are certified Mental Health First Aiders to provide essential counselling to farmers in need.

“We are extremely pleased that foodpro has chosen us as their charity partner this year and is committed to helping make a difference.”

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