2 December 2022
The winners of the Reef Champion Awards have been announced in Cairns to recognise the outstanding achievements of individuals and organisations working to improve the quality of water entering the iconic Great Barrier Reef.
The Awards are managed by the Queensland Farmers’ Federation with support from CropLife Australia and the Australian and Queensland governments to recognise the dedicated land managers, Traditional Owners, extension officers, industries and members of the community excelling in their efforts to help safeguard the future of the Reef.
Chief Executive Officer of CropLife Australia, the national peak industry organisation for the plant science sector, Mr Matthew Cossey, reinforced the challenge before Australian and global farmers in meeting the food and nutritional requirements of the world’s population while doing it in an even more sustainable way and ensuring the protection of priceless natural wonders like the Great Barrier Reef.
Mr Cossey said “The innovation in stewardship and sustainability of Queensland farmers working to protect the quality of water in the iconic Great Barrier Reef should be celebrated and supported. That is why CropLife Australia supports and sponsors the Reef Pesticide Stewardship Champion Award and provides world leading best practice support to all farmers through our StewardshipFirst suite of initiatives. The Reef Pesticide Stewardship Champion Award recognises an individual or business’s efforts in best-practice product stewardship and pesticide run off management.
“Innovative examples like those featured through the awards that are specific to the business and environmental surroundings along the Great Barrier Reef are just another example of why Australian farmers are renown globally for being good stewards of the unique lands and oceans that surround us.
“Australian farmers account for just one per cent of the population, but they do the heavy lifting when it comes to building a viable business that produces enough food for our needs and sustainably utilises the unique lands we live on.
“The plant science industry is proud to support farmers with new products, tools and innovations for disease management be they synthetic, organic or biological. CropLife’s industry-led suite of stewardship initiatives are also specifically designed to help Australia and Australian farmers achieve many of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
“Not only are efforts like these noticed, but they are measured. The most recent Great Barrier Reef Scientific Consensus Statement, shows pesticide levels in the reef at much lower levels than originally estimated through modelling, and meeting essentially all environmental protection requirements and targets, however we will only continue our efforts to ensure the protection of the Great Barrier Reef and that other industries follow our lead,” concluded Mr Cossey.
For more information about the awards and the full list of winners, click here.