Facing future challenge

17 October 2023

Climate change and drought present a real challenge for our industry. Fortunately, what has emerged in recent times is a rallying point for proactive action and a collaborative spirit to address these pressing issues: the TAS Farm Innovation Hub.

Originally developed under the Future Drought Fund initiative 'The Hub' in Tasmania, one of eight established across Australia is seeking to provide Tasmanian farmers and our rural communities with the skills, resources, and knowledge to navigate the ever-changing climate landscape. Its purpose is to enable innovation by providing access to knowledge and facilitating the adoption of sustainable practices for farm businesses and the community.

At its core, The Hub is a vision of the future, where Tasmanian farmers are not just surviving, but growing while addressing financial, social, and environmental opportunities and challenges associated with climate change and unpredictability. The Hub also aims to enhance community wellbeing by building resilience to manage future extremes of climate.

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Driving the innovation hub and at the forefront of the leadership team is Director Sandra Knowles. Sandra's extensive leadership experience, coupled with her legal background and deep knowledge of Tasmanian agriculture, positions her as a driving force for change and innovation within the team. She leads a team of highly experienced specialists across the whole spectrum of the multi-faceted entity of Tasmanian primary production, innovation, and research.

Where the hub shines is its collaborative approach, it serves as a nerve centre where researchers, farmers, resources managers, traditional owners, and industry experts can come together to design and implement new and innovative solutions. With a collective approach, the hub is on the cutting edge of relevant and timely work, which is organically addressing the needs and circumstances of the wider Tasmania Agriculture Community.

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The hub has identified five priority themes to guide its efforts: Farm Planning and Preparedness, Water, Landscapes, Climate, and Community. At this week's Hub Partner Forum held in Launceston approximately sixty attendees heard presentations on a number of issues including amongst others: Programs to support resilience, Strategic planning, Drought management, Containment feeding, and the rollout of “Farming Forecaster” in Tasmania.

The TAS Farm Innovation Hub is a testament to proactive, forward-thinking action in the face of climate challenges. By uniting stakeholders through active networking, fostering innovation, and addressing critical themes, it aims to equip Tasmanian farmers and communities with the tools they need to not only adapt to a changing climate but also thrive in it. This initiative embodies the spirit of resilience and innovation that is essential for ensuring a sustainable and prosperous future for Tasmania's agricultural sector and its community.