Former GG backs alternative agriculture

Published in : ABC Rural  – Thursday, 09/07/2009
By Sarina Locke from Canberra , ACT

The former Governor General is heading a group pushing for sustainable food production in Australia.

Major General Michael Jeffrey will chair a taskforce that groups some alternative agriculture methods.

They include those seen on Australian Story on ABC TV; Peter Andrews’ Natural Sequence Management and organic farming lead by former CSIRO scientist Dr Maarten Stapper.

It also includes rotational grazing, practiced by Holistic farmers and large scale tree planting.

It’s called Sustainable Bio Agriculture and General Jeffrey he was attracted to it becuse 70 per cent of Australian farmland is degraded.

General Jeffrey says he hopes to see trial sites established under Sustainable Bio Agriculture by the end of the year, to become a teaching tool for farmers and scientists.

“What happens is you get the natural fertility returned to the soil such that you don’t have to use chemical phosphates or biocides and so on,” he says.

“And the soil reinstates itself in terms of fertility so what you get is sustained fertility, very, very cheaply and very very productively and that’s what we want to try and do with the whole of our landscape.”

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