Many areas across Queensland and New South Wales are experiencing devastating weather and floods, which are impacting production regions and many regional and rural communities.

While it is too early to quantify the extent of the damage, it is clear that this weather has affected many growers in Queensland and New South Wales and its impact will be felt for many months.

The affected regions are some of the most productive in the Australian vegetable industry, with the damage not just limited to production loses on-farm, but also infrastructure, fencing, machinery, loss of topsoil and time and investment in preparing paddocks for the winter crop. Not only this, but the floods are having flow-on effects throughout the broader supply chain, such as road closures and disruptions to a wide range of businesses.

AUSVEG has heard reports from growers who have had entire crops wiped out that have been only a few days away from harvesting, packing sheds flooded and requiring significant repairs or replacements, damage to machinery, fencing and other critical farm infrastructure, and severe disruptions to paddocks – including losing topsoil – that will not only impact product currently in the ground, but also future crops where paddocks were being prepared for winter crops.

AUSVEG and its State Members are assisting growers through this difficult time, including supporting efforts for the local, state and federal assistance required as the impact of the damage is assessed.

AUSVEG has also responded to a wide range of media enquiries commenting on the impact of the floods on the availability of fresh produce for consumers around Australia, highlighting that the vegetable industry supply chain is resilient, that many fresh vegetables can be sourced from multiple growing regions and that the medium-term impact on supply is unclear.

AUSVEG participation in National Coordination Mechanism

On Friday 4 March, AUSVEG participated in the Commonwealth Government’s National Coordination Mechanism (NCM) meeting to discuss government and industry response to the flooding and severe weather in Queensland and New South Wales. This meeting was hosted by Senator the Hon Bridget McKenzie, Minister for Emergency Management and National Recovery and Resilience, and the Director General of Emergency Management Australia Joe Buffone.

A range of issues facing vegetable growers were raised by AUSVEG CEO Michael Coote, including the impacts on supply and availability of certain fresh vegetable product lines, and that growers have reported a range of issues, ranging from damages to equipment and infrastructure, to paddocks that have been prepared and planted for winter crops have been lost and in some cases topsoil has been washed away, which will extend any recovery in the region.

Importantly for affected vegetable growers, the Minister and the Commonwealth Government are acutely aware of the need for speedy activation of financial assistance and grants to assist with cashflow and clean up activities with simple administration to access assistance. Also, they are aware that insurance claims from growers must be assessed and processed as a priority.

Resources for Queensland and New South Wales growers

Growers in Queensland and New South Wales are encouraged to keep records of the impact of the floods on their properties and businesses, including photos.


Information on emergency management and disaster funding can be found via the below links:

New South Wales

Information on emergency management and disaster funding can be found via the below links:

AUSVEG encourages growers to look after themselves, as well as their friends, families, colleagues and community members during this difficult time.

Anyone who is experiencing difficulty with their mental health can contact Lifeline on 13 11 14, or Beyond Blue on 1300 224 636.