We're not Asia's food bowl, but we make a great gourmet deli

IN 1844 the Commissioner of Crown Lands, Oliver Fry, visited Kyogle and made this declaration: "No country ever came from the hand of the creator more eminently qualified to be the abode of a thriving and numerous population".

Today, The Numbers on Kyogle support Fry's nineteenth century declaration.

Figures from the Regional Development Australia Institute show that the Kyogle Local Government Area is ranked 14 out of 560 LGAs for Net Primary Productivity (a measure of the rate that plants in an ecosystem produce net useful chemical energy).

In fact, the entire Northern Rivers region is gifted with an abundance of natural resources and is ranked second in Australia for Net Primary Productivity out of 55 regional development zones nationwide.

Last week I spoke at the Kyogle Council "Fresh Ideas for Farming Productivity" seminar.

I am interested in exploring ways for Kyogle farmers to increase their farm-gate profits.

The growth and sales potential for farmers is huge for those willing to innovate farming practices.

The 2011 Agriculture Census shows Kyogle LGA produces 66% of its agriculture income from cattle and calves and 27% from milk production, while the 2014 Deloitte "Positioning for Prosperity" Report identifies beef and dairy as two of the five established agribusinesses set to benefit most from rapid increases in global demand.

The Deloitte report identified agribusiness and tourism as two of the 'Fantastic Five' next wave industries - being those on the point where global growth and Australian competitive advantage intersect.

Kyogle and the Northern Rivers - with our abundant natural resources and clean, green healthy brand - are well positioned for prosperity and to enjoy riding this next wave of global opportunity.

We may not be able to be the food bowl of Asia but we have an exciting opportunity to be the global gourmet deli.

Links to today's column data sources can be found at http://rdanorthernrivers.org.au/numbers/

* KIMMAREE THOMPSON is the CEO of Regional Development Australia (Northern Rivers), a non-profit organisation funded by Federal and State governments as a catalyst for regional growth and innovation. 

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