Farmers’ toil brings benefits to community

Peter FiorenzaGeraldton Guardian

I’m not a farmer or a fisherman.

But despite this, I have always taken an interest in both industries because they mean so much to our region.

The city of Greater Geraldton is indeed smack bang in the middle of an agricultural mecca.

It is surrounded by the plentiful Indian Ocean and Abrolhos Islands to the west, and crop and sheep pastures stretching east to the Rabbit Proof Fence.

So, to say these primary industries are important to our town’s economy could be regarded as somewhat of an understatement.

Even though I really have no connection to farming, I have always taken an interest in what’s happening, whether it’s seeding time, or harvest.

What is being grown this year? Canola or lupins?

Do some operators carry livestock?

And what is the weather doing?

For some reason, these sorts of things interest me, but although I might be able to talk the talk, I don’t really think I could walk the walk.

I know I’m stating the obvious, when I say that farming is a tough lifestyle.

There are not too many of us that would be prepared to continually put it all on the line year after year, knowing that much of what you do is simply in the lap of the gods.

And this farming caper is not just restricted to the farmer and his/her farm hands.

I know two wonderful ladies quite well that will tell you, farming is an all-family investment.

You could say that running a family farm is a great grassroots example of a partnership, with the current COVID-19 experience making this partnership model even more significant.

At the moment, this has led to a lack of people available to assist on properties, so this harvest it is a case of all hands on deck.

This year, many wives and partners are having to jump on to the tractor to make sure the harvest comes in.

It is predicted to be a pretty good season this year, but the recent late rain means the harvest period, for many, will have to be extended.

For the next month or so it will be a 24/7 operation with combines and chaser vehicles continually on the go.

As mentioned, I really don’t know a great deal about farming, but I do know that it is certainly a tough job that has an endless job description.

Farmers are a special breed, simply wonderful people.

Wonderful people that make a big contribution to our region.

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