Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing

Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing is the third largest employing sector in the Armidale Region and produces the second largest export value. Beef production is a major export, but Armidale also produces over half of NSW's tomatoes.

$384 million

contribution to local output

1,606

jobs supported

913

local businesses

$162 million

value generated in the region

$292 million

exports to extrenal markets

>$70 million

Beef production

A MAJOR LOCAL INDUSTRY

    • Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing is a substantial provider of wealth in the Armidale Region. Its share of output and value added in 2018/19 was effectively double the regional NSW average.

    • It is the second largest generator of exports for the Region, providing almost a third of total exports in 2018/19.

    • 1 in every 10 workers in Armidale Region work in the Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing Sector.
Glass Buildings

"Just over 30% of the businesses in Armidale Region are in Agriculture, most of them family run farms "

 
Wooden Hut

"In 2019, the offices of the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) were moved to Armidale reflecting its strength in agricultural knowledge and expertise"

RECENT GROWTH

    • Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing has averaged 0.2% p.a. growth in value added over the last decade, but the last three years has seen slightly stronger increases in contrast to a regional NSW decline.

    • Exports in the sector have grown slightly above the regional NSW average over the decade. The last three years has been particularly strong.

    • Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing jobs have grown by 0.7% p.a. over the decade, and recent jobs growth has averaged 2.9% p.a., well above the regional NSW average.
 

KEY SUB-INDUSTRIES

    • Agriculture is the largest contributor within the Sector, generating $148M in value added in 2018/19, or 92% of the total.

    • The largest numbers of businesses are in Specialised Beef Cattle Farming (192 in 2019), and Sheep-Beef Cattle Farming (145 in 2019).
Glass Buildings

"UNE hosts a number of facilities aimied at improving agriculture productivity including the Livestock Industries Centre and the SMART Farm Innovation Centre"

 
Wooden Hut

"Controlled Environment
Horticulture is becoming a growth industry in the Armidale region led by the Costa Group expansion at Guyra"

GROWTH IN TOMATOES COUNTERACTING WEAK BEEF PRODUCTION

    • The production of beef generates the most value in the Armidale region, but this value has fluctuated. The value of production in 2018/19 was estimated to be lower than five years previous.

    • The value of tomatoes production in the region has doubled in the last five years, growing by an estimated $16.7M to exceed $31M in 2018/19.

    • Lamb and wool are the two other largest commodities averaging $18-22M in value over the five years.
 

WORKFORCE CHARACTERISTICS

49

 

years

old

69%

31%

Median

Age

Male

Female

(52 years)

(71%)

(29%)

Source: ABS Census, 2016;

(Regional NSW)

Born o/s

16%

(10%)

22%

34%

Degree Educated

Owner-Manager

(13%)

(39%)

74%

Full-Time

(70%)

$37,440

Median

Income

($40,888)

    In 2016:

    • Armidale Region workers were slightly younger, less likely to be male and more likely to be born overseas than the regional NSW average.

    • A higher share of workers were degree educated.

    • A lower share of workers managed their own business.

    • Workers were more likely to be working full-time than the regional NSW average but were earning lower median incomes.
 

Costa Group

Costa is one of Australia’s leading growers of fresh fruit and vegetables. They operate a major glasshouse facility outside Guyra. The glasshouses have 302,400 square metres (30.22ha) of growing area (approximately 12 AFL football fields) and at peak production hold more than one million plants.

LOCAL ORGANISATIONS

Australian Wagyu Association

The Australian Wagyu Association is based in Armidale. The association supports numerous independent farmers across the region and Australia who are looking to breed and market Waguy to retailers, restaurants and overseas markets.

UNE SMART Farms

The University of New England has recently developed SMART Farms that enable UNE researchers and their industry and community partners to conduct world-class activities that encompass Sustainable, Manageable, Accessible, Rural Technologies (SMART).

 
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