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Thursday, 8 December 2022
In this edition:
Flood information
Grants for flood-affected farmers
Map of eligible Local Gov areas image

A support package is available for flood-affected farmers:

  • Primary Producer Recovery Grants: Up to $75,000 grants to cover the cost of recovery and get businesses up and running again. Note: This replaces the $10,000 Primary Producer Flood Clean–Up, Relief Grants announced on 19 October. Producers that have received a Primary Producer Flood Clean-Up Relief Grant of $10,000 can now apply for up to a further $65,000 under the Primary Producer Recovery Grant, bringing the total to $75,000.
  • Rural Landholder Grants: Up to $25,000 grants to cover the costs of disaster impacts for small-scale producers.
  • Primary Producer Concessional Loans: Up to $250,000 to restore or replace damaged equipment and infrastructure, or to cover the short-term business expenses.
  • Primary Producer Transport Subsidies: Up to $15,000 to support the transport of emergency fodder or stock drinking water, and the movement of livestock.

To apply for support or for more information, visit the Rural Finance website.

Increased risk of Japanese encephalitis (JE)
Japanese encephalitis banner warning image

Flooding and heavy rainfall have increased the risk of a range of mosquito-borne diseases in Victoria, including Japanese encephalitis (JE).

JE can cause illness in susceptible animal species including horses and pigs.

In pigs, the most common clinical signs are mummified and stillborn or weak piglets while horses usually show no signs of illness but can present with fever, jaundice, lethargy, neurological signs and anorexia.

For mosquito control advice visit the Farm Biosecurity website.

And for information about protecting yourself from JE, please follow the Victorian Department of Health or visit Better Health.

Taking care of yourself
Farmer health banner image

Have you been taking care of yourself?

During an emergency, people tend to exist in a survival state to get through the incident, using up considerable emotional reserves. 

If you’ve been working hard for long periods, missing meals and sleep, take some time to take care of yourself.

Recognise the signs of stress and reach out for support if you need it.

For a comprehensive list of health support agencies, click here

Practical tips for flood-affected farmers
Practical tips for farmers - image of hay rolls submerged in flooded paddock

Go to our website for a range of practical flood recovery information for farmers, and helpful information on what to do immediately after a flood.

Find out more at

Rural Financial Counselling Service
RFCS banner image

The Rural Financial Counselling Service (RFCS) has an experienced team ready to assist primary producers and small rural businesses in recovery planning.

RFCS provides free financial counselling to farmers and small related businesses who are in, or at risk of, financial hardship.

They can also assist with filling in forms and grant applications.

For more information visit RFCS website

Livestock Biosecurity Grants
Livestock Biosecurity Grants banner image

There’s still time to apply for our Livestock Biosecurity Funds Grant Program.

Victoria’s Livestock Compensation Committees are seeking projects that boost biosecurity for the cattle, sheep and goat, swine and honey bee industries.

Applications close Friday 23 December. Discover more click here

Free biosecurity learning modules for farmers
eLearning banner image

Farmers across Victoria will benefit from a series of free online learning modules, helping them protect their animals from diseases and biosecurity threats.

Available through Agriculture Victoria’s website, the three learning modules have been released: foot and mouth disease awareness, lumpy skin disease awareness and Come clean, stay clean, go clean – when visiting farms.

Each module should take approximately 15 minutes to complete.

For further information about the online learning modules CLICK HERE.

Farm biosecurity plans
Farm biosecurity plan banner tile

Are you currently working on or thinking about your on-farm biosecurity plan?

Here are the steps you need to consider:

  • Find a farm biosecurity template that works for you – there are options on our website
  • Adapt to your individual situation and your specific biosecurity risks
  • Add a BMP with mandatory content to your farm biosecurity plan
  • File it in a safe place and share with your staff.

Farmers should be aware that new laws have been introduced in Victoria enabling livestock producers to protect their property from unlawful trespassers.

To take advantage of these protections, producers must have compliant biosecurity signage and a BMP with mandatory information.

For more information about BMPs, visit

To find a farm biosecurity template that works for your farm, click here

Man convicted and penalised for illegal spotlighting and animal cruelty

Last week, a man from Markwood in north-eastern Victoria pleaded guilty and was convicted in Wangaratta Magistrates Court for animal cruelty and illegal spotlighting offences.

The man was ordered to pay a combined total of $5,000, had his Game Licence cancelled, is prohibited from obtaining a new Game Licence for five years, and his two firearms, ammunition and a spotlight were forfeited.

The Game Management Authority’s (GMA) Acting Director of Compliance and Intelligence Zac Powell said the GMA teamed up with Victoria Police as part of a joint agency patrol in response to complaints from the community about illegal spotlighting in the Whitfield area.

“Officers intercepted the man in his vehicle at around 7:30pm on 23 July 2021 in the Rose River area near Whitfield,” Mr Powell said.

“The man was found with unsecured firearms and a spotlight in his vehicle in recognised deer habitat 30 minutes after sunset and his firearms, ammunition, spotlight and vehicle were seized on the spot.

“Further investigations uncovered evidence the man had also committed animal cruelty offences where he had chased and run-down deer with a vehicle and had also been hunting deer with hounds without a licence endorsed for hound hunting.

“These acts of animal cruelty and irresponsible behaviour show no respect for Victoria’s game deer species and will be prosecuted. Illegal spotlighting is also dangerous and can put your community, property, livestock and native wildlife at risk.

“Those who break the law face significant fines and penalties, they may be prosecuted, have their equipment confiscated and lose their Game and Firearms Licences. In some cases, offenders may face jail terms.”

Hunters and the public are urged to report illegal hunting to the GMA through its website or the Customer Contact Centre on 136 186, or by contacting Victoria Police.

The GMA works closely with its partner agencies to conduct enforcement and compliance operations across Victoria.

For more information on game hunting in Victoria, visit

Tips to recover bogged machinery safely
Paddock image

With the recent flooding and significant rain events across the state, you may be worried about bogged machinery on your property.

Have a plan for recovery before starting work in the paddock:

  • check conditions before entering areas where the ground could be boggy
  • assess the situation:
  1. can you wait for drier conditions?
  2. can you dig out the farm machinery?
  • think about maps to show boggy areas to contractors and employees
  • reduce or remove weight from the machinery
  • use suitable recovery equipment – check the ratings of straps and shackles so you know the working load limit (WLL) and break strength, and how to interpret for recovery
  • minimise people in the recovery area
  • check the communication between machinery operators, for example, use a phone or UHF radio
  • use appropriate anchor points
  • consider where (if any) weight can be added to the recovery vehicle
  • consider which direction to tow the bogged machinery
  • consider how the recovery vehicle will be positioned
  • place a dampener onto the recovery equipment.

For more information visit Worksafe's agriculture page.

Chemical safety after floods
Chemical storage image

Landholders in flood affected areas may face a range of issues related to the storage and use of chemicals:

  • Weed, pest and fungicide spraying may increase after floods. There may also be increased need for chemicals used on livestock, for diseases such as flystrike. Follow the label and ensure you don’t use chemicals past their expiry date.
  • Floodwaters may result in different pests or diseases to those you usually manage. To minimise risks please only use chemicals according to the label instructions.
  • Comply with any “DO NOT” statements, including those relating to spraying near waterways or on saturated ground.
  • Be cautious when using spraying equipment on flood affected areas as it may be less stable than normal.
  • As large areas are saturated there may be an increased need for aerial spraying.
  • If chemicals are contaminated or damaged due to flood waters dispose of them appropriately e.g. via subsidised programs like ChemClear or call 1800 008 182.

For more information on dealing with floods visit

Recent webinar recordings

Plus, join Carmen Quade's online self-paced learning modules where you can increase your skills in Microsoft Excel in your own time for the subsidised rate of $50. *Codes valid to the first 30 participants of each module. Register your interest online.

2023 Victorian and Tasmanian Crop Sowing Guide
2023 Victorian and Tasmanian Crop Sowing Guide

The 2023 Victorian and Tasmanian Crop Sowing Guide is now available for download from GRDC's website to help growers decide the best crop variety for their situation.

Every year, in conjunction with Agriculture Victoria, GRDC develops this guide providing information on current varieties of the major winter cereal and pulse crops for Victorian growers.

The guide is available for download HERE.

What's On

Details about Agriculture Victoria events can now be found in one spot on our website.

Log on to to find out what's on.

Seymour flood recovery drop-in centre

Agriculture recovery drop-in sessions are being held for flood affected farmers. Specialists will be available to help with recovery needs and discuss recovery support services available.

  • When: Friday 16 December, 10 am – 12 pm (morning tea available)
  • Where: Chittick Community Place Pollard St, Seymour.

Register on Eventbrite here or call Sonia Sharkey on 0409 515 630 or at

Energy Webinar – Smarter electricity management: Doing more with less
Farmer on-farm image

Do you want to find more practical ways to reduce your electricity costs?  We are hosting an online forum to explore practical measures for increasing energy productivity and reducing your electricity bill.

When: Wednesday 14 December, 11.30 am.

Smarter electricity management – see how your smart meter data can help you find for your farm (and home):

  • cheaper electricity deals
  • awareness of your electricity tariff to save money
  • how best to use solar and batteries
  • energy saving opportunities.

Join our webinar to find out all this and more money saving ideas.

Energy expert David Coote will be presenting on energy saving opportunities and best use of solar and batteries and much more.

Please register here or contact Kelly Wickham for information on 0456 772 641 or

Traceability Hub Launch
traceability hub launch image

Are you an agribusiness looking to build or improve your supply chain?

Join us for the online launch of the Agriculture Victoria Traceability Information Hub.

Where: Online
When: Friday 16 December
Time: 10 – 11 am.

The Hub is a new resource for industry to access traceability information.

It provides a central, online place to inform, educate and connect businesses along the supply chain.

Register NOW to attend.

Flood Recovery Community Outreach – Greater Shepparton City Council

Greater Shepparton City Council is holding a series of informal information sessions during December 2022 to provide flood recovery related information and support services.

Venues and times

  • Murchison Carols and Market, Murchison Riverside Gardens, 5.30 – 7.30 pm Sunday 11 December.
  • Toolamba Carols by Candelight, Toolamba Hotel, 5.00 – 9.00 pm, Sunday 11 December
  • VLocity Trains Launch Event, Shepparton Train Station, Wednesday 14 December, 3.30 – 6.30 pm

For more information contact Greater Shepparton City Council on (03) 5873 9700 or visit

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Contacting Agriculture Victoria

Call 136 186 from anywhere in Australia for the cost of a local call (except for mobiles and public telephones).

If you are deaf, or have a hearing or speech impairment contact the National Relay Service on 133 677 or

All contact points can be found at:

Don't forget to check out Agriculture Victoria's social media sites for up-to-date information and news.



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Follow us on Twitter @VicGovAg


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