Media releases


On this page you can read press releases from CANEGROWERS and the broader Australian sugarcane industry. 



Chairman CEO  
Paul Schembri
T: 07 3864 6444
M: 0417 604 196
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Dan Galligan
T: 07 3864 6444
M: 0418 871 881
Click Here



26 May 2017: City costs drive up regional Queensland power prices
CANEGROWERS is warning of an unfair electricity price hike imminent for regional Queensland. More >

22 May 2017: About time! Wilmar and QSL sign sugar industry agreement
CANEGROWERS, the peak body for Queensland sugarcane farmers, has welcomed the news that signatures are now on a crucial sugar industry contract paving the way for members to supply Wilmar mills this season. More >

10 May 2017 Growers prove their Great Barrier Reef water quality credentials Far north Queensland cane growers in the most Reef-sensitive areas are proving their commitment to improved water quality through accreditation in the industry’s Smartcane BMP program. More >

13 April 2017: ACCC removes barrier to collective bargaining in the sugar industry Farming group CANEGROWERS says it’s members will directly benefit from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission authorising greater collaboration and cooperation during contract negotiations in the sugar industry. More >

31 March 2017: Cyclone Debbie chews up $150 million of Queensland’s cane crop
Initial estimates are putting the value of the Queensland sugarcane crop lost to Tropical Cyclone Debbie at $150 million. More >

30 March 2017: Growers relieved at Code of Conduct commitment
CANEGROWERS has welcomed the announcement that a Code of Conduct will be put in place for the sugar industry to prevent a repeat of the long-running marketing dispute that has left 1500 growers in limbo for the 2017 season. More >

29 March 2017: Cyclone Debbie flattens sugarcane crop
Sugarcane growers along a 300 km stretch of the north Queensland coast are today assessing the damage Tropical Cyclone Debbie has left to homes, sheds, equipment and crops. More >

27 March 2017: Sugar industry braces for Cyclone Debbie
Around half of Queensland’s sugarcane crop and more than 1,150 cane farming families are in the path of Tropical Cyclone Debbie. More >

21 March 2017: Farmers lead with plan to fix electricity mess
Farming lobby group CANEGROWERS has put forward a five-point plan to fix the mess that is electricity pricing in Australia. More >

16 March 2017: Aerial bid to control rats in sugarcane
CANEGROWERS has secured a minor use permit from the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicine Authority (APVMA) for the aerial baiting of rats in response to a population boom in two key cane-growing areas that looks set to cost the industry millions of dollars. More >

8 March 2017: Confidence amid challenges as Policy Council meets in Mackay
CANEGROWERS Chairman Paul Schembri has told the organisation’s Policy Council there are many reasons for sugarcane growers to be confident about the future. More >

3 March 2017: 2017 contracts a step closer for growers
The news of a high-level agreement between Wilmar Sugar and QSL has been welcomed by peak sugarcane farming organisation CANEGROWERS as an important step towards key contracts being in place for the 2017 season. More >

3 March 2017: Wilmar interference with QSL Board riles growers
A court decision removing industry directors from the QSL Board is further evidence of the extent to which Wilmar Sugar is going in its bid to control the Queensland industry. More >

2 March 2017: Parliament sinks sugar industry arbitration bid
CANEGROWERS is disappointed the Queensland Parliament has failed to pass amendments to the Sugar Industry Act to allow for arbitration if negotiations and mediation don’t produce a workable contract between Wilmar Sugar and QSL for the 2017 sugarcane season. More >

27 February 2017: Sugar industry welcomes Indonesian tariff move
The Australian sugar industry has welcomed a tariff agreement between Australia and Indonesia which will put our sugar exports on a par with our regional competitors. More >

15 February 2017: Farmers warn of more power pain
Sugarcane growers are in Brisbane today sounding a warning to all electricity users that staying cool in summer, running a business and watering food crops is about to get more expensive. More >

14 February 2017: Hopes pinned on sugar contract ultimatum
CANEGROWERS is urging Wilmar Sugar and Qld Sugar Limited (QSL) to commit to negotiate their way past their current impasse on a crucial sugar marketing contract. More >

1 February 2017: 1,500 Queensland farmers with lives and businesses on hold
Peak sugarcane farming organisation CANEGROWERS is urging Wilmar Sugar, QSL, the Queensland Government and the community to remember that 1,500 mostly family farming businesses are at the heart of the current impasse over contracts for the 2017 season. More >

27 January 2017: ACCC backs grower role in progressing sugar marketing talks
CANEGROWERS invites Wilmar Sugar and Qld Sugar Limited (QSL) to a three-way meeting in the first week of February to move sugar marketing negotiations past their current impasse. More >

24 January 2017: Trade push continues despite USA TPP setback
CANEGROWERS will keep up the pressure on the Australian Government to push ahead with the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) despite the United States pulling out. More >

9 January 2017:$2 billion sugar season for Queensland industry
Queensland cane growers have wrapped up a long and testing harvest season in which just over 34 million tonnes of sugarcane was sent to the state’s 21 mills for crushing. More >

05 January 2017: Letter to the Editor
Foreign Investment Review Board Chairman Brian Wilson has displayed how little he knows or understands about the $2 billion Australian sugar industry in his comments in The Australian Financial Review of 5 January, 2017. More >


21 December 2016: Cane harvest continues into the festive season
Sugarcane farming organisation CANEGROWERS is urging people travelling for Christmas to be patient as growers in a number of regions work into the festive season to get their 2016 crop cut. More > 

15 December 2016: Tully growers secure sugar marketing choice
Six of the seven sugar milling companies operating in Queensland have now finalised commercially acceptable agreements with CANEGROWERS members for the 2017 season. More>

14 December 2016: Energy regulator is getting it wrong and summer power costs will rise
CANEGROWERS is sounding the alarm that the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) is on course to rubber stamp seriously flawed Ergon Energy network tariffs in a decision due in February 2017. More >

13 December 2016: CANEGROWERS welcomes certainty for Queensland’s bulk sugar terminals
CANEGROWERS, representing the majority of Queensland’s sugarcane farmers, has welcomed the confirmation that QSL will continue to operate the state’s world-class bulk sugar terminals. More >

7 December 2016: Bonsucro alignment secures future markets for Queensland sugar
Queensland sugarcane growers are satisfying the most stringent sustainability requirements of the world’s biggest sugar-buying companies to secure their futures in the world sugar market. More >

1 December 2016: Power package offers opportunity for farms to prove pricing problems
CANEGROWERS welcomes the Queensland Government’s announcement of a $10 million Regional Business Support Package which includes funding for a series of farm electricity pricing trials. More >

10 November 2016: CANEGROWERS congratulates the Farmer of the Year award winners
CANEGROWERS is proud to recognise and congratulate two members who are winners in the 2016 Kondinin Group – ABC Rural Australian Farmer of the Year Awards. More >

10 November 2016: Sugar farmers call for USA to move forward on trade
Peak Australian sugarcane farming organisation CANEGROWERS is urging the United States not to waver on its agreements and obligations to international trade following the election of Donald Trump as its 45th President. More >

8 November 2016: Sugarcane businesses commit to a sustainable future with BMP 
CANEGROWERS Chairman Paul Schembri and his brother Joe have achieved Smartcane BMP accreditation for their Mackay district cane farms, joining 152 businesses which so far have the stamp of approval for sustainability, productivity and profitability. More >

20 October 2016: Sugar industry's Great Barrier Reef commitment is in the numbers
CANEGROWERS says numbers and not letters on a report card paint the clearest and most up to date picture of what is really happening in the sugarcane growing districts of Queensland. More >

20 October 2016: Alarm bells ring over sugar terminal board change
Peak grower organisation CANEGROWERS will be keeping a close watch over the management of Queensland’s six bulk sugar terminals in the future to make sure growers are not disadvantaged by Wilmar Sugar seizing increased influence over the vital industry infrastructure. More >

4 October 2016: Breakthrough agreements clear final hurdle to grower choice
CANEGROWERS members supplying MSF Sugar mills are the first in Queensland to be guaranteed choice in sugar marketing with two crucial agreements now signed, sealed and delivered. More>

19 September 2016: Sugarcane industry recycling program on target
Australia’s sugarcane growers are on target to make this year’s fertiliser bag recycling drive a 1,000 tonne event More >

14 September 2016: Video winners celebrate cane growers’ commitment to the Reef
A video competition has shone a bright and proud spotlight on the efforts of sugarcane farmers to safeguard the Great Barrier Reef. More >

29 August 2016: Frustration and disappointment as Wilmar-QSL negotiations flounder
Sugarcane grower organisation CANEGROWERS is bitterly disappointed that negotiations between Wilmar Sugar and QSL have reached an impasse serving to frustrate the implementation of competition in sugar marketing. More >

24 August 2016: Grower reps explain choice and competition to Productivity Commission
CANEGROWERS has appeared before the Productivity Commission’s public hearing in Brisbane today with serious and grave concerns about a recommendation relating to the sugar industry in a draft report on Regulation of Agriculture. More >

19 August 2016: Irrigators urge energy ministers to act on electricity pricing
Australia’s state and territory energy ministers have a chance to boost regional economies and return farming businesses to profitability by addressing the sky-rocketing cost of electricity when they meet in Canberra today. More >

18 August 2016: Burdekin growers flock to fertiliser efficiency program
CANEGROWERS congratulates the growers behind 50 farms which have signed up to a crucial second phase of a fertiliser efficiency program in the Burdekin – the region with Queensland’s biggest sugarcane production figures. More >

21 July 2016: Qld legislation delivers competition to sugar marketing
Peak industry body CANEGROWERS has expressed surprise that legislation which has opened up sugar marketing services to increased competition has been described as re-regulation. More >

8 June 2016:Cane growers score century for Reef and vow to bat on
Queensland’s sugarcane growers are ensuring their industry’s long term environmental sustainability and profitability by flocking to the industry’s best management practice program, Smartcane, and reaching an important milestone. More >

31 May 2016: Irrigators of Qld are fed up as electricity set to jump another 12.3%
Any plans to grow irrigated agriculture in Queensland and increase the value of farming to the state’s economy are doomed to fail if electricity prices are not brought under control says peak sugarcane grower body, CANEGROWERS. More >

27 May 2016: Five key election issues for sugar region economies
CANEGROWERS is urging all political parties standing in 'sugar seats' this federal election to measures future growth and prosperity of this important Queensland industry. More >

25 May 2016: First meeting for new Policy Council and State Board
CANEGROWERS recently-elected Policy Council, which will drive the peak sugarcane farming body for the next three years, is meeting in Townsville and one of its first tasks has been to elect a new State Board. More > 

16 May 2016: The clock ticks on power prices as the anger and evidence mounts
As sugarcane farmers and other irrigators nervously wait to know what next year’s electricity tariffs will be, the body of evidence pointing to an unfair and flawed pricing system is growing. More > 

5 May 2016: Getting on with business - new supply agreements guarantee choice
CANEGROWERS members in the Maryborough district and MSF Sugar are signing the historic first new Cane Supply Agreements (CSAs) under the amended Sugar Industry Act which provides for grower choice in sugar marketing.  More >

23 March 2016: Another massive electric shock: Electricity to jump another 10.3%
The government’s plans for growing agriculture in Queensland are  on the path to failure if proposed 10.3% electricity price hikes are not reeled in now, says peak sugarcane grower body, CANEGROWERS.  More >

24 February 2016: Cane welcomes Mick Keogh as new Ag Commissioner
The cane industry has been quick to welcome well-known agricultural figure, Mick Keogh, to his new role as Agricultural Commissioner to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC). More > 

5 February 2016: Time to fix the broken power pricing system
More evidence pointing to the need for an urgent overhaul of the electricity pricing system has been laid before power companies and the Queensland Government. More >

4 February 2016: Australian sugar industry welcomes TPP
The Australian sugar industry welcomes today’s formal signing of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement between 12 countries of our region and looks forward to its smooth and quick formal ratification in Australia. More >

3 February 2016: Nominations open for CANEGROWERS elections
CANEGROWERS is kicking off its 2016 triennial election round with a challenge to women and younger growers to put their hands up for local representative positions. More >

20 January 2016: Cane growers start 2016 with optimism
Queensland’s sugarcane growers are starting 2016 on an optimistic footing with some good summer rain so far in many districts and negotiations set to start on future mill supply contracts which will ensure competition and choice in the sugar market. More >


2 December 2015: Continued right for sugar grower say in marketing confirmed
Australia’s cane growers are pleased that it has been confirmed that they will continue to have a legitimate right to have a say in how their sugar is marketed.  A crucial Bill for the State’s cane growers passed in the Queensland Parliament today, which will enforce their existing rights. More >

2 December 2015: Keeping existing grower rights will be good for the whole industry
A Bill which will bring the raging sugar marketing debate to a head comes before the Queensland Parliament today, as the State’s sugarcane growers seek to have their rights protected and ensure genuine competition in sugar marketing. More >

02 December 2015: CANEGROWERS welcomes ethanol mandate
Sugarcane farming group CANEGROWERS has welcomed the passing of legislation which will require almost a third of the regular unleaded petrol sold in Queensland from 2017 to be an ethanol blend. More >

27 November 2015: NO DEAL. Growers refute mill claims that acceptable deal has been brokered
Cane growers refute claims that the Australian Sugar Milling Council has tabled a compromise that will be acceptable to growers in the ongoing sugar marketing dispute. More >

13 November 2015: CANEGROWERS welcomes NFF Chairman’s reappointment
Peak sugarcane group CANEGROWERS says the reappointment of well-known agricultural leader, Brent Finlay, as Chairman of Australia’s National Farmers Federation (NFF) is great news for farmers. More >

29 October 2015: Ergon’s revenue gouging proposal trimmed, but will not reverse electricity “death spiral”
While disappointed in a decision which will allow Ergon to collect an additional $216.3 million revenue more than foreshadowed in its draft electricity determination, CANEGROWERS welcomes the decision by the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) to trim Ergon’s unrealistic and unreasonable revenue gouging proposal by 19.3%. More >

17 October 2015: Don’t wait for farmers to go broke this El Niño: proactive policy needed now
With the strongest El Niño since 2007 confirmed, farmers are calling on government to use the climate forecasting data now available to get in and make proactive policy to activate measures to minimise the impact of the drought as it expands, instead of waiting until growers struggle through another drought, going broke, before something is done. More >

6 October 2015: Sugarcane growers encouraged to sign up to Smartcane BMP as compliance measures flagged by govt
Peak group CANEGROWERS acknowledges the announcement by the Queensland Government that it will be looking towards developing a targeted compliance program for reef water quality outcomes, but has made it clear that the industry’s own Smartcane BMP is for a better approach for growers who are focussed on productivity and profitability as well as sustainability. More >

6 October: Australian sugar: TPP A story of contrasts (ASA media release)
The Australian sugar industry today acknowledged the finalisation of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement as a bittersweet end to five years of complex and difficult negotiations.  There are some clear wins, however the major disappointment is with the USA maintaining their protectionist stance on market access for Australian sugar. More >

24 September 2015: Global Sugar Alliance clears record on India Subsidy and Health Misinformation (Global Sugar Alliance Release)
Amid the 5th consecutive year of a global surplus and challenging world market conditions at below the cost of production in their member countries, The Global Sugar Alliance members from the major sugar exporting nations met together in Sao Paolo, Brazil earlier today to tackle this and a multitude of issues impacting on the global sugar industry currently. More >

21 September 2015: Sugar clear about its ongoing commitment to water quality
Peak group CANEGROWERS acknowledges the Great Barrier Reef scorecard released today which reports that as of mid-2014, water quality is improving across all catchments, but more slowly than hoped. More >

19 August 2015: Support grows for legislative fix to sugar marketing row
Close to half of the Queensland Parliament is now ready to vote to secure choice and fairness for sugarcane growers in raw sugar marketing. CANEGROWERS Chairman Paul Schembri said growers were a step closer to facing the future with confidence now the Liberal National Party has confirmed it has met its election commitment of drafting pro-competition amendments to the Sugar Industry Act. More >

2 August 2015: TPP: Aussie sugar says it plans to use every bit of time to mount pressure
The difficult issue of market access, particularly for sugar, has not been resolved and will be deferred for further discussion. More >

30 July 2015: Stay Strong on Sugar in Trade: TPP (Australian Sugar Industry Alliance)
As negotiations for the massive Trans-Pacific Partnership, covering 40 percent of global GDP enters a critical stage, the Australian sugar industry and a cohort of government heavy weights have moved with conviction in their message to the US, as word comes that the US is holding its ground in the bitter struggle to extend market access for sugar into the country. More >

24 July 2015: Sugar is key to Trans Pacific Partnership trade agreement success (Australian Sugar Industry Alliance)
Sugar will be the word on everyone’s lips at what looks set to be the final round of big trade talks in Hawaii this week.  The Australian sugar industry says there is an unprecedented magnitude of opportunity for Australian sugar in the Trans Pacific Partnership talks, but it is important not to underestimate the size of the task at hand. They say Australia will need all its resolve to stay strong and focussed on getting the much talked about improved access for Australian sugar over the line. More >

3 July 2015: CANEGROWERS welcomes UNESCO call to not list our reef as 'in danger'
CANEGROWERS has welcomed the UNESCO World Heritage Committee’s decision not to list the Great Barrier Reef as ‘in danger’. Although climate change is the greatest single long term threat reef’s health, and cane growing is just one of the many industries that boarder the reef, the sugarcane industry has been very visible in driving action where they can. More >

25 June 2015: Growers call Wilmar’s ‘gold standard’ nothing more than a clayton’s offer, fool’s gold
Cane growers supplying Wilmar mills were shell-shocked that Wilmar has continued to tell growers that they can not have choice in marketing, even though the senate inquiry and code of conduct taskforce made it clear that it is needed to rectify the commercial imbalance against the nation’s cane growers. More >

25 June 2015: By George, we've got it: code released on sugar marketing
The nation’s cane growers heartily welcome the release of a proposed mandatory code of conduct for sugar marketing by the federal government taskforce today. More >

24 June 2015: Unanimous bipartisan Senate finding for mandatory code for sugar marketing
A Senate investigation has unanimously found that there is a case for a mandatory code of conduct in the marketing of Australia’s sugar.  More >

22 June 2015: Power price increases halted, but need to push down costs looms large
The Queensland Competition Authority has announced this week that electricity prices will remain on hold for the State’s irrigated farmers. More >

5 June 2015: Draft sugar marketing code much needed confidence boost for growers
Peak group CANEGROWERS has welcomed the release of a draft code of conduct for sugar marketing which they say shows that the federal government is serious about taking action that supports growers’ interests. More >

15 May 2015: Canetube video competition to celebrate farmers
It’s time to unleash your filmmaking and animation creativity for your chance to share in cash prizes! More >

13 May 2015: Budget 2015: CANEGROWERS response
CANEGROWERS says this year’s budget delivers modest gains for the farm sector through specific initiatives that are aimed at assisting cash flow on farm, lowering business taxes, boosting bilateral trade agreement outcomes and recognising challenging seasonal conditions facing parts of the sector. More >

1 May 2015: Grower choice and rights to be recognised by LNP bill The peak sugarcane farmers’ group CANEGROWERS has welcomed an LNP commitment to prepare a Private Members Bill for the Queensland Parliament to fix the anti-competitive marketing environment that has evolved within the sugar industry. More >

23 April 2015: Ethanol back on agenda, Government green lights exploration into expansion of biofuels
CANEGROWERS has added its support to the announcement by the Queensland Government today that they are looking into the potential of unlocking the potential of Queensland’s biofuels, which could well point towards taking a serious look at introducing an ethanol mandate for Queensland. More >

22 April: Crunch time for TPP (Australian Sugar Industry Alliance)
The Australian Sugar Industry Alliance has sent in two high profile Australian sugar industry representatives, Warren Males and Dominic Nolan, to critical trade talks in the United States this week. More >

17 April 2015: New Queensland Government throws support behind Smartcane BMP Sugarcane growers across Queensland are elated today by news that the new government in Queensland has thrown their support behind the industry’s best practices program for sugarcane growers, Smartcane BMP. More >

8 April 2015 Dan’s the man: CANEGROWERS scores agricultural leader as new CEO
Well known agricultural leader and advocate Dan Galligan is taking a walk on the sweet side, taking up the sought-after role as CEO of the peak industry group for sugarcane growers, CANEGROWERS.   More >

24 March 2015: 2050 Sustainability Plan offers reef opportunities CANEGROWERS says the Reef 2050 Long Term Sustainability Plan released by the Minister for Environment, the Hon Greg Hunt MP, is an opportunity for government to support sugarcane farmers as they continue their efforts to improve water quality. More >

9 March 2015: Watershed trade negotiation ahead for sugar (Australian Sugar Industry Alliance)
Australia’s sugar industry is fighting tooth and nail for Australian sugar’s full and rightful inclusion in the forthcoming all important Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement, with the next round of negotiations due to take place in Hawaii next week. More >

5 March 2015: Veteran staffer appointed as CANEGROWERS Acting CEO
The CANEGROWERS Board has appointed well-respected and long-serving staffer Ron Mullins as the Acting CEO of CANEGROWERS. More >

24 February 2015: CANEGROWERS CEO resigns
The peak sugarcane farmers group CANEGROWERS has announced the resignation of CEO Brendan Stewart. CANEGROWERS Chairman Paul Schembri said it was with great regret that the Board has accepted Mr Stewart's resignation. More >

21 January 2015: CANEGROWERS & ACFA welcome LNP commitment to legislate if necessary
Today cane farmers across Queensland are buoyed by news that the first party on the election trail has answered their passionate calls to take action to fix the market failure which is ripping confidence from the State’s cane growers and placing their very futures at the mercy of monopoly millers. More >

20 January 2015: 93% growers don't trust mills to share profits fairly: farmers say fix needed now
A strong message has been shot across the bow of every party on the election campaign trail that if agriculture is a priority for the State of Queensland, they must move now to fix the market failure which is ripping confidence from the State’s cane growers and placing their very futures at the mercy of monopoly millers. More >

7 January 2015: QSL Board Changes
CANEGROWERS today welcomed incoming Chairman, Guy Cowan, to the Chairmanship of sugar marketer QSL, saying Mr Cowan brings considerable corporate experience to the role and is well known to the industry being the longest serving director with QSL, a position he has held since 2009.  Mr Cowan was appointed to the QSL for a further 3-year term and assumed the Chairmanship on 1 January 2015. More >

7 January 2015: Regional Queensland must be a priority this election: CANEGROWERS quick to outline key platforms
With the Queensland State election confirmed for 31 January, CANEGROWERS has set out five key priorities which must be addressed by every campaigning party serious about growing the State’s second largest export commodity, sugarcane, and the strength of regional Queensland. More >


17 December 2014: New electricity body formed; must now deliver fairly priced power to the people
The establishment of a new body to look into the huge electricity prices being faced by rural Queenslanders is being welcomed by CANEGROWERS.  Instigated by the Queensland Government, the new “Agriculture Energy Council” is being formed to look into failures in the State’s electricity sector. More >

16 December 2014: Draft electricity determination fizzles for farmers
CANEGROWERS says that growers are angry with the disappointing response on electricity prices in QCA’s latest draft determination; even after an independent report released two months ago clearly showed that Queensland’s rural users are paying more per connection for power than the rest of Australia, whist their energy provider was raking in more profits per connection. More >

10 December 2014: Sugar hopes pinned on new Taskforce to protect growers from monopolies
Peak group CANEGROWERS has welcomed the official announcement by the Australian Government today that it is establishing a new sugar marketing taskforce to look into competition and marketing issues facing the cane sector. More >

17 November 2014: Importance of trade reform escalates as sugar on sacrificial alter in China FTA deal
In this day and age it is simply not acceptable to leave sugar out of an free trade agreement – Australia’s trade agreements needs to be comprehensive and tackle the politically sensitive issues, says CANEGROWERS after news that sugar was excluded in the declaration of intent for a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) signed with China today. More >

3 November 2014: Grower protection against monopolies fails, fix outlined in Senate submission tendered today
Peak grower groups CANEGROWERS and ACFA today tendered a powerful joint submission into the Senate enquiry into Australia’s sugar marketing systems, outlining robust and workable strategies to rectify the clear market imbalance in favour of the mill which has now been created. More >

21 October 2014: More on-farm change faster, another Wet Tropics partnership kicks off today for cane
The sugar industry in the Wet Tropics is about to embark on an exciting new project, which will further accelerate the rate of change seen on sugarcane farms across the region. More >

10 October 2014: Slugged: Qld’s rural users pay shed-load more for electricity
A new report reveals the ugly truth about the shocking electricity price hikes being experienced by rural users in Queensland. The new report delving into the extraordinary price hikes in electricity for Queensland cane growers and rural householders has revealed that they are charged amongst the highest network tariffs in Australia. More >

4 September 2014: Senate inquiry doubles chance of the right outcome for farmers
Australia’s peak sugarcane growers group says the announcement of a Senate inquiry into raw sugar marketing underlines the fact that there are significant problems with the future that large milling corporations have planned for the industry. More>

17 July 2014: CANEGROWERS welcomes carbon tax repeal
Queensland’s sugarcane growers welcome today’s repeal of the carbon tax and the positive impact it will have on a wide range of farm input costs, including electricity. More >

15 July 2014: Sugar marketing reaches fever pitch, state govt to investigate
Recent moves by multi-nationals which would rip from the State’s sugarcane growers the choice of who markets their cane and force growers to price through the corporate-owned mill pricing businesses has come to a head today with the Queensland Government announcing a major market investigation. More >

4 July 2014: Petition fails to spark solution to unsustainable electricity prices
CANEGROWERS thanked Minister for Energy and Water Supply Minister McArdle for responding to a petition supporting CANEGROWERS proposal for a 33% cut to the crippling price of electricity by irrigators, but says unfortunately it does not resolve the issue. More >

30 June 2014: Blatant disregard for cane growers by corporate millers: farcical
Peak group CANEGROWERS says news that Tully Mill’s COFCO has now given notice to exit the industry-owned sugar marketer QSL is nothing short of farcical. More >

27 June 2014: Bitter pill for sugar growers: calls mount on government to intervene
The fight for the rights of Australia’s cane growers against multinational interests has escalated quickly today with news that Australia’s second largest milling interest, MSF, has now also served notice to withdraw from industry owned marketing group QSL. More>

24 June 2014: CANEGROWERS urges further sugar marketing talks
CANEGROWERS Chairman Paul Schembri has welcomed the Agriculture Minister John McVeigh's offer to broker further discussions towards developing a mutually beneficial and financially sustainable future for the sugar industry. More>

17 June 2014: Growers not falling for Wilmar claims that only tell half the story
CANEGROWERS says Wilmar’s claims of outperforming growers in the QSL system are only half the story, and says that the peak group is disappointed that Wilmar is resorting to attacking the industry, rather than backing up its claims. More >

30 May 2014: Power price rise bad for farmers
Queensland Farmers will vote with their power switches and turn off their irrigation pumps if the State Government accepts a Queensland Competition Authority recommendation for a further 15% hike in electricity costs for irrigators. More>

27 May 2014: Wilmar to growers “you have no rights”
After over 12 months of negotiations, Wilmar has finally come out and showed their true colours with a blatant statement in a press release that “growers do not have any legal or contractual rights”. CANEGROWERS and Australian Cane Farmers Association (ACFA) are united in the fight to protect grower interests. More>

22 May 2014: Fight for QSL escalates overnight, intensifying as Wilmar serves notice of formal exit
Cane growers have warned Wilmar to be ready for a fight on a scale not seen before in the Australian industry as they prepare for the battle of their lives to convince the miller to stay within the industry-owned QSL marketing model and not set up its own marketing arrangements. More>

19 May 2014: Growers meet in Wilmar areas to find out real deal for marketing
Cane growers are expected to turn up on-masse to a series of local meetings being held by CANEGROWERS in Wilmar areas to explore what the miller’s proposal to set up their own marketing arm actually means for the future of the family farm in Australia.More >>

Ravensdown exits
Growers will be watching the price of fertiliser nervously, with news that the only major fertiliser competitor on Queensland’s eastern seaboard will exit, effective immediately. More>

13 May 2014: Agriculture survives tough budget
The National Farmers’ Federation (NFF) acknowledges that in a tough budget environment, the Government has largely delivered on its election commitments to the agriculture sector. More>

7 May 2014: Cut surging power costs to benefit farmers, Ergon & the economy Sugarcane growers have written directly to the Premier, Campbell Newman, ahead of the state budget, formally requesting his support for a 33% cut to electricity prices for all irrigators to save farm businesses and boost Queensland’s economy. More >

1 May 2014: Adding fuel to the fire: diesel fuel hikes untenable for farming sector
CANEGROWERS say mooted cuts to the diesel fuel rebate for Australia’s farmers will impact hundreds of cane farmers, who are already almost at breaking point under the weight of increasing costs of inputs needed to grow the nation’s crops. According to the peak group, any reduction of the rebate would impact every business across the supply chain, from growing to harvesting to transport and milling. More >

29 April 2014: Sugar Research Australia’s very first strategic plan welcomed by industry: ASA
The Australian Sugar Industry Alliance has welcomed the release of Sugar Research Australia’s five year Strategic Plan at the Australian Society of Sugar Cane Technologist (ASSCT) Conference on the Gold Coast today. More >

14 April 2014: Steamrolled by Ita: Sugarcane down, but not out
Cyclone Ita tracked along Queensland’s northern coastline impacting nearly 90% (27.5 million tonnes) of Australia’s sugarcane crop in its wake, but to hugely varying degrees according to peak sugar cane group CANEGROWERS today. More >

8 April 2014: Bitter pill as sugar sacrificed in Japan trade deal: CANEGROWERS
After years of negotiations, Australia's sugar growers are bitterly disappointed at being again cast as the sacrificial lamb in trade. More >

8 April 2014: Japan as disappointing as ‘04 US free trade agreement for sugar: ASA
The Australian Sugar Industry Alliance has described the outcome of the Japan trade pact for sugar as disappointing as sugar’s exclusion from the US free trade agreement a decade ago. More >

3 April 2014: Growers mount fight of their lives to keep profits transparent
CANEGROWERS and ACFA have issued the strongest possible warning to the miller of close to half of Australia's sugar that it must consider the future viability of growers, as news that it plans to break away from QSL and set up its own marketing arm ripples across the industry. More >

27 March 2014: First cane farmer in Australia gets Smartcane BMP accredited
This week the sugarcane industry celebrated the first farmer in Australia to receive accreditation in the new best practices farm program, Smartcane BMP. Mackay grower, Michael Deguara, was today presented with the first certificate of accreditation for the Smartcane BMP Soil Health and Nutrition module, a critical module in the eventual roll-back of regulation for the sugarcane industry and one which covers of on a key issue for the farming community – nitrogen use efficiency. More >

6 March 2014: New look CANEGROWERS to meet changing needs of growers
CANEGROWERS will implement a plan which will see the successful agricultural lobby group restructure to better serve the changing agricultural landscape it is now operating in. The peak body says the new approach strengthens, modernises and streamlines the well-recognised traditional approach to strong member representation for which CANEGROWERS has been renowned for over 88 years. More >

12 February 2013: Don’t sell Australia short in trade negotiations says sugar (Australian Sugar Industry Alliance release).
The Australian Sugar Industry Alliance (ASA) says allowing exceptions for one country in the current trade negotiations could lead to the unravelling of the agreement, as other parties pull their offers on sensitive products or their concessions on sensitive products. More >

31 January 2014: Cyclone Dylan: sugar hopes it weathered storm lightly.
While it is too early to accurately assess the cost to the sugarcane industry from Cyclone Dylan which made landfall at around 3.30am near Hideaway Bay near Proserpine this morning, the cane growing areas in its path are so far this morning hoping that the feared major damage expected, has largely been avoided. More >

7 January 2014: Sugar shaker: state of play Australian sugarcane industry.
If thirsty crops get a much needed drink soon, the Australian sugar industry could be on track to deliver a crop in excess of 32 million tonnes in 2014. This would be great news for Australia’s sugarcane farmers who have faced back-to-back disappointing results in recent years.  Paul Schembri, Chairman of peak group CANEGROWERS, says last month was the driest end of the year in a decade and hopes were high in the industry that January would herald in some good soaking downpours to spur along the coming crop and deliver good returns for the 2014 season. More >


  • 17 December 2013: Making every drop count: Water efficiency funding welcomed by cane.
    CANEGROWERS has welcomed the announcement of almost $8 million in funding from the Queensland Government, which the peak group says will really kick along the efficiency of water use in the agricultural sector. More >
  • 5 December 2013 > Boost for sugar exports as Australia and Korea reach a sweet trade agreement.
    Australia’s largest sugar export market, Korea, is set to sign a renewed trade agreement which will boost Australian sugar’s trade access with its important trading partner. The Prime Minister announced today that as the Australia-Korea free trade negotiations concluded, sugar was listed amongst the commodities which will see tariffs eliminated; a decision worth millions of dollars to Australian farmers. More >
  • 3 December 2013 > Australian sugar launches world-class best practice program.
    A new program that sugarcane growers will voluntarily become part of to prove that they are world-class farmers was formally launched by the Queensland Government and CANEGROWERS today. The Australian Cane Farmers Association, was also there supporting the launch. More >
  • 24 November 2013: COFCO urged to honour commitments made to Tully growers.
    Tully cane growers are hammering their local mill to honour commitments made by new owner, COFCO, when the mill was purchased. If they are not honoured, it will cost local growers millions of dollars in lost revenue every year. CANEGROWERS says that unless the Tully Sugar mill honours the written commitments made by new owner COFCO when the mill was purchased, local cane growers will be forced to absorb some $3.25 million in lost revenue. Meanwhile, the mill stands to gain by some $4.95 million. More >
  • 20 November 2013: Sugar industry warns of sour trade deal.
    Something must be done, is the overwhelming message from the Australian sugar industry as key world trade agreements get closer to finalisation. The Australian sugar industry is in overdrive conveying the message strongly that sugar must not be excluded in this round of talks. Peak group CANEGROWERS says if sugar is left out of trade negotiations this time, it could be decades before the Australian industry gets another chance at real reform. More >
  • 20 November 2013: Sugar must be part of a comprehensive trade deal (ASA Media release).
    Sugar must be part of the latest round of trade deals, says the concerned Australian sugarcane industry. More >
  • 14 November 2013: All systems go for BMP launch 3 December.
    A new set of guidelines that sugarcane growers will voluntarily sign-up to so as to prove that they are world-class farmers, was formally endorsed by the Queensland Government today. The modules underwent rigorous third party scientific and technical assessment before being signed off. More >
  • 14 October 2013: Spate of power line accidents spark concern for cane growers.
    A spate of power outages caused by accidents involving large farm vehicles and power lines saw thousands of homes without power in north Queensland last week. More concerning is that the four accidents, which all happened in one day last week, could have had fatal consequences. More >
  • 6 September 2013: Cane growers to stake claim over sugar beyond farm gate.
    A watershed report released today says cane growers can and must move now to take their stake in sugar beyond the farm gate. More >
  • 3 September 2013: CANEGROWERS scores big name in agribusiness for top job.
    CANEGROWERS has announced that one of the biggest names in agriculture will head up the organisation. Brendan Stewart will join CANEGROWERS as their Chief Executive Officer, taking over the reins on 30 September. More >
  • 30 August 2013: Responses to CANEGROWERS election priorities are in.
    CANEGROWERS says that four of the five major parties have formally responded to each CANEGROWERS five major platforms, ahead of the 7 September federal election. More >
  • 26 August 2013: Sugar unlikely key to unlocking trade market access impasse.
    Sugar could prove just the sweetener the latest trade negotiations need to unlock the current export market access impasse. More >
  • 19 August 2013: Sugarcane zaps governments over electricity pricing at Energy Forum.
    Government policy is pushing electricity and fuel costs higher and eroding the international competitiveness of the Australian sugarcane industry. That was the strong message from peak group CANEGROWERS at the Energy Forum held at Parliament House in Brisbane today. More >
  • 16 August 2013: CANEGROWERS releases election priorities on TV.
    CANEGROWERS has today released a hard-hitting list of actions it says government must address, to rebuild the strength of the Australian sugarcane industry - an economically important industry for Australia. More >
  • 24 July 2013: Disaster assistance deadline extended.
    The sugarcane industry has welcomed the extension of the deadline to apply for disaster assistance from 30 August to 29 November 2013. Today’s announcement by Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, John McVeigh, was heartily welcomed by peak body CANEGROWERS. More >
  • 24 July 2013: Southern Queensland sugar harvest will go on: dredging funding approved.
    The sugarcane industry is breathing a collective sigh of relief today as the Federal government announced much needed disaster assistance to restore the Port of Bundaberg to pre flood conditions. More >
  • 10 July 2013: Sugar gets enviro tick in government reef scorecard.
    The sheer amount of environmental work by the State’s cane growers has today been recognised with release of a scorecard monitoring the health of the iconic Great Barrier Reef. More >
  • 1 July 2013: Sugar Research Australia signed, sealed, delivered 1 July.
    Today is a landmark day for the Australian sugarcane industry as a streamlined new body for sugar research, Sugar Research Australia (SRA), can move into full operation. More >
  • 28 June 2013: Cane growers ecstatic as Sugar Research Australia Bill passed in Senate. Legislation which allows the Australian sugarcane industry to streamline and modernise its research function under new body, Sugar Research Australia (SRA), was passed in the Senate today. More >
  • 21 June 2013: Developing the north end: CANEGROWERS says yes please. There is an ever increasing appetite for Australia’s quality sugar, and CANEGROWERS says that growers would like nothing better than to step in and fill that demand. The vision for developing northern Australia released by the Coalition today would be a big step in the right direction says the peak group. More >
  • 18 June 2013: Sweet success for ‘green’ sugar: Premier's Sustainability Awards. The State’s top gong in farming was awarded to a sugarcane growing family in the Burdekin last week. The prestigious Premier's Sustainability Awards was held in Brisbane on Friday evening; a long-running event recognising top performers in business and industry across Queensland. More >
  • 13 June 2013: Hive of activity as Qld's cane crush kicks off. Australia’s 2013 sugarcane crush has commenced in earnest, however initial crop estimates have been revised down due to flood damage and the unknown impact of yellow canopy syndrome, says peak sugarcane industry body CANEGROWERS. More >
  • 6 June 2013: Qld ag strategy ambitious but achievable, says cane industry.Peak sugarcane industry body CANEGROWERS has welcomed the Queensland Government’s release of the Queensland agriculture strategy, saying the vision to double the State’s agricultural production by 2040 was ambitious, but achievable. More >
  • 4 June 2013: Electric shock halved: dialogue opened to discuss high voltage prices in future years. CANEGROWERS has today cautiously welcomed a halving of the proposed 20% hikes to electricity prices next year, as the Queensland Government handed down the State budget today. The surprise announcement of a 10% cap on electricity prices for one year follows a sustained campaign by the peak lobby group against the viability-threatening hikes on the State’s irrigated farmers. More >
  • 3 June 2013: Changing of the guard for CANEGROWERS Queensland. The Chairmanship of CANEGROWERS Queensland changed hands today, with well-known Mackay cane grower, Paul Schembri, elected unopposed. More >
  • 31 May 2013: Electricity report release jolts cane growers worst fears.Growers’ worst fears on electricity price hikes were confirmed today as the Queensland Competition Authority released its Final Price Determination coming in with a 20% hike for farmers. More >
  • 31 May 2013: Cane growers arc up about electricity prices. A report into the recent rapid price increases for electricity in Queensland has been released this week. It contains some startling revelations, and provides some very doable, solutions. More >
  • 28 May 2013: Water announcement wolf in sheep’s clothing. All is not what it seems in announcement made by the Queensland Government today on water rebates, says peak sugarcane group CANEGROWERS. More >
  • 17 May 2013: Good news for cane growers as MSF looks to come back into QSL. MSF Sugar’s announcement that the company would sign a new Raw Sugar Supply Agreement with Queensland Sugar Limited (QSL) for the 2014 season is good news for the sugarcane industry and growers who supply MSF, although Chairman of peak group CANEGROWERS, Alf Cristaudo, says it is six months later than it needed to be, especially for Tableland growers. More >
  • 14 May 2013: Common sense, sustainable vegetation reforms on the way. CANEGROWERS says vegetation management reforms being proposed should in essence be trying to achieve a common-sense, sustainable balance between environment and agriculture. More >
  • 23 April 2013: Acting CEO appointed for CANEGROWERS Queensland. CANEGROWERS Chairman, Alf Cristaudo, has announced that CANEGROWERS CEO, Steve Greenwood, has resigned as CEO for personal reasons. A recruitment process for a new CEO has begun. In the interim, the CANEGROWERS Board has appointed well-known and long-standing Chief Operating Officer, Ron Mullins as Acting CEO. More >
  • 15 April 2013: Local management of water: a step closer for cane.CANEGROWERS has welcomed the Queensland Government’s announcement today of a step which could see irrigation transitioned from SunWater to local management. More >
  • 10 April 2013: Another YES vote: sugar research reform almost here. Australian sugarcanes’ push to streamline and modernise its research function is a step closer today as the members of BSES Limited voted enmasse to transfer the assets of BSES to Sugar Research Australia (SRA), when it is formed. More >
  • 20 March 2013: Veg reforms: a potential boon to sugarcane expansion. CANEGROWERS has strongly welcomed the announcement today by Deputy Premier, Jeff Seeney, and Minister for Natural Resources and Mines, Andrew Cripps, proposing major reforms to vegetation management. The sugarcane industry says this will go a long way to support its plans to expand. More >
  • 6 March 2013: Sugarcane growers – your BSES asset vote papers are on the way says ASA. Sugarcane growers who are BSES members will receive their BSES asset transfer voting information pack in the mail soon with all the material they need. Growers are being encouraged to tick the BSES Chairman as their proxy, tick Yes-agree, sign the form and to post it back to BSES by 4 April. More >
  • 6 March 2013: CANEGROWERS says YES vote for asset transfer a no brainer. Peak sugarcane group CANEGROWERS has put the weight of its full support behind a YES vote in a ballot announced by sugar research group, BSES Limited yesterday. More >
  • 25 February 2013: Cane growers shocked by $5,000-$10,000 increase in power bills. Hundreds of cane growers will be seriously considering their future in farming, after the government announced a major hike in electricity last week. More >
  • 18 February 2013: Category D a godsend for cane growers. Flood ravaged cane growers in the Bundaberg, Maryborough, and Childers areas have called the announcement of Category D assistance a godsend. “Category D will be the thing that keeps some cane growers in the game,” CANEGROWERS CEO, Steve Greenwood said today. More >
  • 25 January 2013: Never rains but it pours: deluge brings mixed blessings for sugarcane. What was shaping up to be a bumper sugarcane crop, may in some areas be helped and in others hindered by soaking rains as ex Cyclone Oswald tracks south. More >
  • 20 December 2012: Sugar shaker: state of play Australian sugarcane industry (season 2012 wrap up). The sugarcane industry is surprisingly upbeat about future seasons, despite 2012’s slightly dampened production, heralded by a slower than expected recovery from flooding, cyclones and prolonged dry in previous years. More >
  • 20 December 2012: Cheaper water for cane growers a step closer. CANEGROWERS has welcomed the invitation for Queensland’s eight channel irrigation schemes to develop business proposals to transition from Sunwater to local management, made by the Queensland Government’s Minister Mark McArdle yesterday. More >
  • 19 December 2012:  Sugar Research Reform 1 July 2013 target for Sugar Research Australia. For the Australian Sugar Industry Alliance (ASA), and founding organisations, CANEGROWERS and the Australian Sugar Milling Council, 2012 has been the year of on-target reform of sugar industry research, development and extension (RD&E) arrangements. More >
  • Jettison export subsidies and comply, says Global Sugar Alliance. Export subsidies must be eliminated and the EU must be made to comply with its trade commitments says the Global Sugar Alliance which brings together 85% of the world cane sugar exports. More >
  • 29 November 2012: Australian Government decision adds more cost for cane growers. Australia’s sugarcane industry is looking down the barrel of severe hikes in the cost of farming, following the Australian Government's decision to severely restrict use of the vital weed management tool diuron. More >
  • 19 November 2012: World-class BMP announced for Aussie sugarcane: Game changer says CANEGROWERS. A world-class best management system for sugarcane growing was kick-started today, as the Queensland Government announced a game changing project under which CANEGROWERS will lead development of a new standard for sustainable sugarcane production in Australia. More >
  • 5 November 2012: $100 million sweet growth for Australian sugar industry. CANEGROWERS says that the Australian sugar industry has increased in value by a $100 million in four years. More >
  • 25 October 2012: CANEGROWERS Chair returned to NFF Board. Herbert River cane grower, Alf Cristaudo, has been re-elected to the board of the National Farmers' Federation (NFF), the peak group for agriculture in Australia. This will be his fourth term on the board and has been Chair of the Finance and Audit Committee for the past two years and a member of the Members Council of NFF since 2004. More >
  • 24 October 2012: Foreign register a start, but CANEGROWERS lays challenge for Aussie investors to look again at agriculture. CANEGROWERS says the foreign ownership register announced today is a first step, but encourages Australian super funds and other large Australian investors to take a leaf out of Asia's book, and take a serious look at investing in Australian agriculture. More >
  • 18 October 2012: Sugar Advisory Services Development Program tops 300  (Australian Sugar Industry Alliance Media Release). Over 300 interested people from Queensland and northern NSW have become involved in the Sugar Advisory Services Development Program (SASDP) over the past seven months. Many of these 300 individuals have participated in multiple activities, with over 535 attending or registering for the 34 short courses conducted by the SASDP so far, and the 10 sessions currently on offer. More >
  • 17 October 2012: Rapping brickie and film students take out top honours in Cane Tube competition. An animated video featuring more than 3000 digital photographs has taken out the top prize of $8,500 in the second annual Cane Tube competition run by peak sugarcane industry organisation, CANEGROWERS. More >
  • 3 October 2012: Check out my new wheels: smart permit gets cane to mill faster. A special permit will allow sugarcane growers to get cane to the mill faster. CANEGROWERS had been lobbying the Queensland Government to allow use of a special type of ‘flotation’ tyres, which carry heavier loads on the road while providing minimum soil compaction in the field. More >
  • 20 September 2012: Sugar reform tabled to Minister today, after blockbuster vote. The fully worked up proposals to overhaul, streamline and modernise sugar research have been tabled to the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Joe Ludwig today; replete with the resounding voice of industry asking the Australian Government to make this reality. More >
  • 20 September 2012: Sugar Research Australia – Application forwarded to Minister Joe Ludwig (Australian Sugar Industry Alliance Media Release). Supported by the unambiguous Yes Vote in the Sugar Poll 2012, leaders of the Australian Sugar Industry Alliance (ASA) today forwarded a full application to Senator Joe Ludwig, Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry on establishing an Industry Owned Company 'Sugar Research Australia', with a new statutory levy, to consolidate and modernise the industry’s existing research structures. More >
  • 14 September 2012: Cane growers applaud changes to vegetation management. Peak sugarcane industry organisation CANEGROWERS has thanked the Queensland Government for their announcement to restore balance to vegetation management laws, saying this will increase productivity and profitability. More >
  • 14 September 2012: Water use efficiency continuation welcomed: CANEGROWERS. The continuation of the Rural Water Use Efficiency (RWUE) program by the Queensland Government has been welcomed by CANEGROWERS. More >
  • 13 September 2012: Tightening belt: short term pain, long term gain. CANEGROWERS today described government job cuts announced this week as an extremely difficult but necessary step in the move to a - much needed - return of Queensland to a AAA credit rating. More >
  • 11 September 2012: Budget's tight but cane industry welcomes renewed focus on ag. Peak sugarcane industry organisation CANEGROWERS has welcomed the release of the Queensland Government’s first budget under Premier Campbell Newman, with a renewed focus on agriculture and RD&E a shining light in the restrained budget. More >
  • 7 September 2012: Industry says YES: Growers vote overwhelmingly for sugar research reform. Sugarcane growers across Australia have thrown their support behind a new, modernised research and development model by voting overwhelmingly ‘yes’ in the sugar industry’s Sugar Poll. More >
  • 22 August 2012:Sugar Poll 2012: progress report on voting to form Sugar Research Australia  (Australian Sugar Industry Alliance Media Release). Sugar Poll voting opened on 6 August and the Australian Sugar Industry Alliance (ASA) is encouraging all sugarcane growing businesses and milling companies to have their say by posting their votes to the Australian Electoral Commission as soon as possible. More >
  • 17 August 2012: Australia's 2012 sugarcane crush hits quarter-way mark. Australia’s sugarcane crush has hit the 25% mark, with almost 8 million tonnes of cane crushed so far this season. More >
  • 6 August 2012: Voting papers for sugar research hit mailboxes today. CANEGROWERS has told growers to keep an eye out for large yellow envelopes which will arrive in mailboxes across Australia’s sugarcane growing regions this week. More >
  • 16 July 2012: BSES directors confirm the importance of a Yes vote to form Sugar Research Australia (BSES Limited Media Release). With the Sugar Poll vote approaching, BSES directors are supportive of a YES vote and are urging all growers and millers to take part to secure the future delivery of sugar industry RD&E. More >
  • 10 July 2012: Count down to Sugar Poll 2012 underway: Growers and millers preparing to vote to form Sugar Research Australia. This week, over 4,000 sugarcane growing businesses and mill companies will receive their first formal letter from the Australian Sugar Industry Alliance (ASA), CANEGROWERS and the Australian Sugar Milling Council leading into the Sugar Poll vote to be run in August. More >
  • 6 July 2012: Local management of rural water: yes please. A large step in the right direction, was the sugarcane industry’s overwhelming response on the back of the Queensland Government’s announcement that a working group was being set up to delve into the potential for local management of water. More >
  • 2 July 2012: Muddy waters: water pricing decision murky. A decision to adopt new water prices for SunWater irrigation schemes will be a serious kink in the pipe of expansion plans for the sugar industry – and for one of the Queensland Government’s four pillars to strengthen the Queensland economy – says peak group CANEGROWERS. More >
  • 14 June 2012: Sugar scoops pool at Premier's Sustainability night of nights. Sugarcane growers have once again been recognised for their environmental credentials with north Queensland cane grower Doug Rasmussen awarded the State’s top award for sustainability (rural category) last Friday night. More >
  • 14 June 2012: New sugar industry adviser and grower upskilling events in July. The Sugar Advisory Services Development Program (SASDP) is expanding its short course offering as part of a series of SASDP Events in six sugar industry locations this July from Cairns to New South Wales More >
  • 12 June 2012: CANEGROWERS dismisses toxic sugar claim: Irrelevant. CANEGROWERS today dismissed toxic sugar claims made by a United States researcher on Channel 9’s 60 Minutes program on the weekend as irrelevant. More >
  • 5 June 2012: Cane growers call on banks to pass on interest rate cuts. Growers are calling on financial lenders to pass on the full 0.25 percent cut to their agribusiness customers. More >
  • 01 June 2012: Rain delays sugarcane harvest start: But hasn’t dampened spirits. CANEGROWERS has today published a revised list of estimated start dates for the sugarcane harvest, following prolonged rain which has delayed kick off in some sugarcane growing areas. More >
  • 31 May 2012: Shock electricity price hike: Lights out for some cane growers? The numbers are being crunched, and cane growers are worried at hikes being proposed to some of their largest costs – water and now electricity – and what that means to their future viability. More >
  • 29 May 2012: Sugar Poll 2012: Growers and millers to vote in August on forming Sugar Research Australia. In early August 2012, all sugarcane growers in Queensland and New South Wales plus the eight milling companies will receive papers from the Australian Electoral Commission so they can vote in the Sugar Poll 2012. More >
  • 25 May 2012: Sugarcane harvest starts Monday: Hopes for sweeter times ahead. The Australian sugarcane harvest kicks off on Monday, and is marked by more optimism than seen in a decade. More >
  • 23 May 2012: Debilitating water hikes: simple decisive action needed. The fear of water price hikes has Queensland farmers really worried. CANEGROWERS says if not addressed decisively now, the QCA recommended price hikes, which were the result of a directive of the previous cash-strapped government, would singlehandedly make hundreds of farmers unprofitable almost overnight. More >
  • 11 May 2012: Tap must be turned off on iniquitous water price hike. CANEGROWERS has called on the new Queensland Government to put massive water price hikes recommended by QCA, under a directive of the previous cash-strapped government, on hold. More >
  • 8 May 2012: National Farmers' Federations response to federal budget 2012. More >
  • 1 May 2012: Mackay Sugar congratulated on Mossman Mill aquisition. More >
  • 30 April 2012: More sugar industry adviser courses for May & June. The Sugar Advisory Services Development Program (SASDP) is widening its offering of short courses in sugar production, with more scheduled in May and June across sugarcane regions including NSW. More >
  • 28 April 2012: Sugar Advisory Services Development Program. 1. Technical short courses for May and June | 2. More on Machinery Inspection | 3. Irrigation-Water-Soil potential 2 day courses. More >
  • 27 April 2012: Ravensdown fertiliser now open to everyone: Farmers vote for Ravensdown growth. Ravensdown Fertiliser Australia is set for a new chapter of growth as 98% of shareholders who were present at its special shareholder meeting voted in favour of its plans to make joining the co-operative much easier. More >
  • 24 April 2012: Dictator-like moves by MSF unacceptable says CANEGROWERS. CANEGROWERS says it appears that MSF Sugar is trying to pull the wool over growers’ eyes, in what can only be described as a very tricky move by the milling group. More>
  • 28 March 2012: Sugar industry adviser courses starting in April. The Sugar Advisory Services Development Program (SASDP) has short courses across important aspects of sugar production ready to go in April and May. More >
  • 28 March 2012: Growers can again use diuron at 1.8 kg/hectare: final decision delayed while full scientific review conducted. CANEGROWERS says the decision of chemical regulator, APVMA, to give itself more time to complete a robust scientific review of the evidence around use of weed management agchem, diuron, is sound. In the meantime growers have been given the green light to continue to using diuron at the 1.8 kg/hectare rate from 1 April until the final decision is handed down – which is expected to be no later than 30 November. More >
  • 27 March 2012: Diuron gets stay of execution: time needed to look at science. CANEGROWERS says the decision of chemical regulator, APVMA, to give itself more time to complete a robust scientific review of the evidence around use of weed management agchem, diuron, is sound. More >
  • 26 March 2012: Turning point: CANEGROWERS welcomes new government. The historic win for the LNP is a clear signal from Queenslanders that they are ready for change said CANEGROWERS today. The peak group has prepared a clear advocacy position, which it will now prioritise with the new government, as they take the helm and start delivering on promises made during the campaign. More >
  • 18 March 2012:  CANEGROWERS releases election scorecard: how the major parties stacked up in strengthening rural & regional Queensland. CANEGROWERS today released its election scorecard rating the policies of the four major parties against CANEGROWERS’ six election platforms, ahead of the 24 March State election. The peak group says each of its six election planks underpins the continued strength of the industry and is critical for the strength of rural and regional Queensland. More >
  • 15 March 2012: Election promises: LNP answers call for skilling support. Another of CANEGROWERS election platforms has elicited response today on the election trail today; as the LNP announced $3 million over three years to improve training in conjunction with industry, universities, training providers, the Australian Agricultural College Corporation and schools. More >
  • 9 March 2012: CANEGROWERS says labour ag policy weak, lack-lustre. Peak group CANEGROWERS says the agriculture policy released by Labor this week is weak, focusing on a holding-pattern of maintenance and not putting increased focus and investment where it is needed – even though the big issues and how to address them have been clearly spelt out in the lead-up to the election. More >
  • 1 March 2012: Election promises: LNP focuses on biosecurity and growth. Two more of CANEGROWERS election platforms have elicited a clear response on the campaign trail today. The peak group has welcomed the announcement by Campbell Newman of two new policies which would see a much greater focus by government on vital areas to the sugarcane industry - biosecurity and land use. More >
  • 23 February 2012: Election promises: LNP first to say it will ‘reinvest in research’. CANEGROWERS has welcomed a statement from Campbell Newman today that under an LNP state government, there would again be an increased priority and investment into research and development (R&D) for the sugar industry. More >
  • 17 February 2012: Sugarcane growers urged to attend important research reform meetings. Sugarcane growers and everyone interested in a strong future for the sugar industry are being urged to attend meetings in their local district in March to learn more about reforms underway for research in the Australian sugar industry including local approaches to extension and services. More >
  • 16 February 2012: State government slammed for falsely claiming reef success as its own. CANEGROWERS today slammed claims by the Queensland Government that increased forms, red tape and paperwork, required of just a small section of the agricultural sector, has saved growers money or the iconic Great Barrier Reef. More >
  • 2 February 2012: Sugarcane’s got talent: canetube competition 2012 launched. Singing, dancing, animations and quirky children’s segments hosted by idiosyncratic presenters are not something that you usually associate with the sugarcane industry. But that’s just what CANEGROWERS is expecting when they launched their ‘Canetube’ competition today. More>
  • 2 February 2012: Solid pedigree to lead QSL: CANEGROWERS welcomes move. CANEGROWERS says that the official appointment of Greg Beashel as CEO of QSL is a welcome move. Beashel had been acting in the role since November. More >
  • 24 January 2012: 2012 marks year of sugar research reform. 2012 will be a watershed year for Australia’s sugar industry as reforms to its research and development (R&D) model create a single and sustainable sugar research organisation with a larger research funding pool. More >
  • 18 January 2012: More rigour in assessment of foreign ownership: yes please. CANEGROWERS has welcomed news that the Australian Government has promised more rigour in its assessment of foreign investment in agriculture, following today’s release of a report into Foreign Investment and Australian Agriculture by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES). More >
  • 21 September 2012: Diuron announcement slammed: will rip profitability from cane. Cane growers are readying themselves for another hit to their profitability as news comes through from the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicine Authority (APVMA), which pares back use of the key weed management tool diuron so severely, that it is effectively banning the vital tool on farms. More


  • 22 December 2011: Sugar shaker: state of play Australian sugarcane industry 2011. Tough times, resilient optimism: The industry is surprisingly upbeat about future seasons, despite the aftermath of the horror wet season that was 2010, followed by flooding, cyclones and prolonged dry in 2011. More >
  • 22 December 2011: Flood and cyclone recovery assistance extended. An extension of the deadline to apply for cyclone assistance to 30 June 2012 has been welcomed by peak group CANEGROWERS. CANEGROWERS had been actively lobbying for an extension to give growers, who were still struggling to get back on their feet post Cyclone Yasi and flooding, more time to complete the paperwork and access the vital recovery assistance measures. More >
  • 21 December 2011: Research reforms start delivering for sugar industry. This week, sugar cane growers will receive a letter from BSES Limited on the changed service fee arrangements for 2012. The service fee is collected by BSES from growers and millers to fund a range of activities including plant breeding and variety development. More >
  • 19 December 2011: Sweet news on much-needed seasonal workers for cane industry. The sugarcane industry could soon have access to much-needed additional labour from countries such as East Timor, Kiribati, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu, as part of a small-scale 3-year trial announced by the federal government yesterday. More >
  • 16 December 2011: CANEGROWERS welcomes plan to develop agriculture in north QLD. Peak group CANEGROWERS has welcomed the announcement by the federal and Queensland Governments that $10 million will be invested in establishing new irrigation industries in northern Queensland. More >
  • 15 December 2011: ASA leaders outline vision for sugar research reform. A single, streamlined sugar research organisation will modernise Australia’s sugar industry by funding more research to keep the industry competitive and sustainable, Australian Sugar Alliance Chair Alf Cristaudo said this week after key industry meetings. More >
  • 12 December 2011: Reforms to modernise sugar industry R&D underway: progress report. Reforms to the Australian sugar industry’s research and development model have begun, paving the way for a single, sustainable and streamlined industry research organisation with a larger funding pool. More >
  • 29 November 2011: Diuron window more like a door: CANEGROWERS says but non-use period perverse. CANEGROWERS says it will ramp up its ongoing campaign taking government to task over the proposed non-use period of important agrichem diuron, and has today spoken about its plans to lobby strongly over the coming days and months to have the temporary measure contained in the interim permit, overturned. More >
  • 24 November 2011: EU to breach WTO sugar commitments – Again! There is strong market speculation that the European Commission (EC) is set to breach its WTO commitments on sugar export subsidies for the second time in two years. More >
  • 21 November 2011: CANEGROWERS welcomes new QSL Chair. Peak group CANEGROWERS has welcomed the appointment of Mike Carroll as the incoming Chairman of sugar marketing group, Queensland Sugar Limited (QSL). “Carroll brings a great depth of expertise, with particular strength in the areas of agribusiness and finance, and his appointment will underpin the continued commercial focus and drive that has seen QSL achieve premium pricing for Australian sugar on the world stage in recent years,” said CANEGROWERS CEO, Steve Greenwood today. More >
  • 17 November 2011: Ravensdown Fertiliser Now Looking To Grow In Queensland. In the space of two years Ravensdown Fertiliser Australia has achieved annual sales in excess of $26 million in Queensland and northern New South Wales, and has fully achieved its objective of establishing itself as a significant participant in the local cane growing sector. The value of shareholding has increased to $6.2m. More >
  • 28 October 2011: A new era for sugar industry R&D announced today. The Australian sugarcane industry today has revealed a comprehensive plan to strengthen and streamline the research, development and extension (RD&E) function. The changes more than double the industry’s contribution to funding R&D from $10 million in 2005/06 to $21 million in 2013/14, creating certainty in the delivery and funding of core RD&E activities. More >
  • 26 October 2011: CANEGROWERS welcomes modernised Biosecurity Bill. Peak group for sugarcane growers, CANEGROWERS, has today welcomed the introduction of the Queensland Government’s Biosecurity Bill as an important step forward for the state’s biosecurity. More >
  • 26 October 2011: CANEGROWERS seeks delay in rolling out regulation audits. CANEGROWERS has today sought a delay in the roll out of regulation audits by the state government. According to peak group, growers are still battling to get on top of farm maintenance following the damage caused by the worst season on record last year, followed by floods, cyclones and more floods, and just don’t need the additional layer of pressure of regulation audits right now. More >
  • 12 October 2011: On farm change jet-powered by Reef Rescue: new report shows change in cane well ahead of schedule. The groundswell of onfarm change seen right across the sugarcane industry has been jet-powered by the Reef Rescue program, said peak group CANEGROWERS today as the Reef Rescue Impact Statement which evidences this transformation was released in Canberra. More >
  • 26 September 2011: First ever sugarcane Nuffield scholarship awarded to CANEGROWERS Burdekin grower, Bryan Granshaw. This week peak group CANEGROWERS has congratulated north Queensland sugarcane grower, Bryan Granshaw, who has been awarded the first ever sugarcane Nuffield scholarship, which was sponsored by the Sugar Research and Development Corporation (SRDC). The Dalbeg sugarcane grower was over the moon to have his inventive research proposal funded by the prestigious program, but says he was even more honoured when he met the field of innovative farmers across Australia – past and present – to be accepted into the program. More >
  • 22 September 2011: Kerfuffle over water quality report released this week: out of context says CANEGROWERS. CANEGROWERS is investigating the facts around a water quality report released this week, which they say has been taken out of context, saying the document will form part of a baseline report on the state of play at the beginning of the Reef Rescue project. They explain it will be at least two years before the final measurements will be taken at the end of project, and the Reef Rescue program’s effectiveness can be measured. More >
  • 21 September 2011: Ravensdown to the rescue: freezes spiralling urea cost – for now. Ravensdown has emerged the good-guy today after announcing that they will be holding the price of urea for as long as they can, following news of price spikes which have driven prices up a whopping 60% in a few short months. More >
  • 17 September 2011: LNP Ag Strategy welcomed by CANEGROWERS. Doing Queensland’s part in meeting the global demand for food, which is set to double by 2050, appears to be high on the LNP’s agenda says peak group CANEGROWERS after perusing their election strategy released yesterday. More >
  • 12 September 2011: 2010’s soggy legacy causing issues for cane growers as harvest reaches half-way. The impact of last year’s extraordinary wet season is only now truly being felt across Australia’s sugarcane regions, as the 2011 crush reaches the half-way point and Australia’s production has again been revised downwards. More >
  • 31 August 2011: Survey looks set to reveal that push to ban diuron is based on old data. The latest push to ban diuron is based on old data says CANEGROWERS. The peak group for sugarcane growers says banning the extremely important farm management tool is premature, and is setting out to show that the cane industry’s use is actually a good deal lower than the current label recommendations. More >
  • 16 August 2011: CANEGROWERS draws battle lines on diuron. CANEGROWERS says the sugar industry’s wins should be recognised in the fight to retain diuron. The peak group has mounted a full-scale campaign to retain the vital management tool for the industry. It says access to essential agrichem diuron, for which there is no viable alternative, must be kept in play while the peak group redoubles its calls for resources to be put into the development of a practical replacement for use in sugarcane. More >
  • 15 August 2011: Scorecard released: sugarcane on track to achieving water quality targets. The sugarcane industry says that the recently released baseline scorecard shows agriculture is on the right trajectory to achieving its 2013 targets. More >
  • 26 July 2011: Cowboys in the classroom: talking sugarcane & water quality to kids. Schools now have access to a fun module about one of Australia’s most important agricultural commodities – sugarcane. Launching the Cowboys in the Classroom sugarcane module was Cowboys player, Scott Bolton, who rolled up his sleeves on 26 July, leading a class at Vincent State School in Townsville through the new farming practices and technologies employed by growers to protect water quality. More >
  • 26 July 2011: Proposed suspension of diuron a major blow for the sugarcane industry. The proposed suspension of key agricultural chemical diuron would be yet another major hit for the sugarcane industry still recovering from one of the worst seasons in history, says CANEGROWERS CEO Steve Greenwood today. More >
  • 15 July 2011: Extraordinary weather calls for cane fires to help growers through harvest. Cane growers are asking communities to ‘bear with them’ as the extraordinary wet conditions in sugarcane regions have meant the use of cane fires to prepare cane for harvest is being utilised in more regions this season. More >
  • 10 July 2011: Carbon tax proposals an $81 million slug on sugarcane alone in next 5 years. Sugarcane growers are looking down the barrel of an $81 million slug for industry over the next five years – an impost that will not apply to any of Australia’s international competitors, says peak group CANEGROWERS today following the planned introduction of a carbon tax outlined by the Gillard government today. More >
  • 29 June 2011: Sweet reward for good practice: Australian Sugarcane Grower of the Year Award Announced. A very surprised and pleased Cairns Region cane grower, Ray Vicarioli, was awarded the overall Australian $10,000 prize sponsored by Suncorp, in the sugarcane industry’s inaugural CANEGROWERS Sugarcane Grower of the Year Awards, announced at the Rural Press Club in Brisbane today. More >
  • 16 June 2011: 2011 Sugarcane Grower of the Year Awards Regional Winners Announced. Cane growers are well known for being laid back, but the results of the inaugural Australian Sugarcane Grower of the Year Awards has shown that their easy going attitude is a world apart from the way they farm. More >
  • 15 June 2011: Potentially devastating cuts to R&D funding headed off at pass: godsend says CANEGROWERS. The agricultural sector is breathing a collective sigh of relief with news that the federal government will not be making the wholesale cuts to research and development funding, which had been mooted in the draft Productivity Commission report tabled in September last year. More >
  • 14 June 2011: Disaster budget underwhelms: CANEGROWERS. Peak sugarcane group CANEGROWERS has said that, as one of the industries which bore the brunt of floods, cyclone, and more floods, the Queensland Government has showed a fair hand; but as far as driving visionary policies to lead the State into a future-focussed economy, this year’s Budget fell short of the mark for rural Australia. More >
  • 31 May 2011: Arbitrary water increases a joke: CANEGROWERS outraged by govt decision. Cane growers are outraged after receiving news from the Queensland Government that they intend to hike prices for water - without robust data to back the decision. According to peak sugarcane growers’ group CANEGROWERS, this will be another massive dent in the profitability of thousands of Australian cane growers, who are already suffering from back-to-back climatic events which has already crippled their cash flow. More >
  • 30 May 2011: Keeping it local: Mackay ups the ante on race for Tully. Grower ownership of mills is hard to go past, says peak group CANEGROWERS today, on the back of news that Queensland Sugar Limited had sold its shares to Australian-based Mackay Sugar for $43, the same as the offer being put to Tully shareholders by Chinese company COFCO and New York agribusiness Bunge. More >
  • 18 May 2011: Heavy machinery ahead: cane harvest kicks off early. Heavy machinery on the roads and extra care at cane rail-crossings is the strong message to sugarcane communities today, as the first cane harvesters fired up, and will soon be heard around Queensland and northern New South Wales. Pioneer Mill in the Burdekin has led the charge, kicking off the sugarcane season for another year on Wednesday 18 May. More >
  • 09 May 2011: CANEGROWERS welcomes extension of assistance to Mackay/Whitsunday. CANEGROWERS has welcomed the announcement by Minister for Agriculture, Food and Regional Economies Tim Mulherin, that further recovery assistance has been extended to Mackay and Whitsunday Regional Council areas following the devastation of Tropical Cyclone Yasi. More >
  • 3 May 2011: Get on blower and access cyclone clean up help: CANEGROWERS. While the media from Yasi has all but blown over, the clean up following the Category 5 cyclone has only just begun. CANEGROWERS has heartily welcomed deployment of ‘Industry Recovery Officers’ who will assist Cyclone Yasi impacted primary producers and tourism businesses get back on their feet. More >
  • 18 April 2011: Food grade lands must not become sacrificial lamb for tree production. CANEGROWERS says it will work with government to ensure quality land for food production is not lost at the expense of trees which can grow in lower quality soils, as the government finalises its strategic cropping policy. More >
  • 18 April 2011:  Formal dispute lodged on recalcitrant mill by far northern cane growers. Bundaberg Sugar is being called to account this week, after cane growers in the Cairns Region, Tablelands and Innisfail areas supplying Bundaberg Sugar, served formal notice for dispute resolution on the recalcitrant mill owner. Peak growers group, CANEGROWERS, says that taking away income to which cane growers are fully entitled is not on, and they are about to raise all hell to get to a fair outcome. More >
  • 18 April 2011: Sugar industry R&D to be revitalised following broadscale review. Australian sugar industry research and development is set for some revitalising changes following an industry-wide review. The review was sparked by the sheer pace of technological advances occurring world-wide as well as the need for a sustainable funding model, according to the review’s sponsors CANEGROWERS and the Australian Sugar Milling Council (ASMC). More >
  • 14 April 2011: Overdue concession by Sucrogen a few lumps short: dispute ongoing. CANEGROWERS has come out today saying that while the concession made by Sucrogen is a small breakthrough, the peak group has reinforced that it is only what cane growers are entitled to and in fact still falls short of the mark. CANEGROWERS says it will continue to hammer hard with the mill to play fair and come up with a more equitable loss-sharing solution. More >
  • 13 April 2011: Bitter fight ahead: cane growers angry as mill attempts to underpay them $3 million. Cane growers are up in arms with news that Bundaberg Sugar Limited, owned by Belgian-company Finasucre, plans to underpay them to the tune of $3 million, following the disastrous 2010 season. This comes at a time when cane growers and their local communities can ill-afford the unfair decrease in income. More >
  • 4 April 2011: Costs of water under review, locals meeting seek grower input. Cane growers will attend local meetings this fortnight, calling for transparent price setting of water, based on cost-efficient schemes. More >
  • 24 March 2011: Cane industry welcomes new research into impacts on reef. Peak sugarcane body CANEGROWERS says it believes that any urban development or industry astride the reef will heartily welcome the chance to see what impact they have on water quality and where the best bang for their buck will be in addressing water quality and reef health. More >
  • 18 March 2011: Cooperative approach needed on sugar pricing solution. CANEGROWERS has reiterated the need for the sugar industry to pull together and work cooperatively to get the best outcome from the industry pricing review. More >
  • 8 March 2011: New recovery officers will help Yasi recovery, says CANEGROWERS. Four dedicated industry recovery officers will be in place in cane growing areas by end of this week. CANEGROWERS has congratulated the government activating this valuable resource, will they say will greatly assist in the recovery process following Cyclone Yasi. More >
  • 1 March 2011: Cane workers alone can’t fill cotton jobs: more needed says CANEGROWERS. CANEGROWERS says cane alone cannot fill the landslide of jobs registered for Operation Harvest Help, and is encouraging any skilled workers to jump on and register their interest in the cotton jobs on offer to bring in bumper cotton crop. There has been a landslide of cotton jobs registered on following the launch of Operation Harvest Help last week by CANEGROWERS and Cotton Australia. More >
  • 19 February 2011: Operation “Harvest Help” launched: matching service bringing cane workers and cotton employers together. Operation Harvest Help will match cane growers looking for alternative employment with cotton growers who need experienced staff to bring in this year’s bumper cotton crop. More >
  • 16 February 2011: Activation of C and D a ray of hope for farmers, says CANEGROWERS. CANEGROWERS is pleased that Category C and D has now been activated in cyclone ravaged areas. The peak group says that the proposal appears to be an extension of assistance offered after Larry, and is now seeking to clarify which levels of support apply in which areas – as there appear to be differences. More >
  • 02 February 2011: TC Yasi estimated to wipe half a billion from sugar industry alone. Sugarcane growers in far north Queensland are amongst those nervously awaiting the arrival of TC Yasi, currently bearing down on far north Queensland. The current course is aimed straight at one of Australia’s sugarcane heartlands, with 30% of Australia’s crop grown north of Townsville – in the cyclone’s direct path. More >
  • 01 February 2011: CANEGROWERS Australia supports NSW appeal for same assistance as QLD and VIC. CANEGROWERS Australia has come out strongly in support of the NSW sugar industry’s plea to make the same assistance available to New South Wales flood affected growers as that currently in place for farmers in neighbouring states. NSW’s support measures currently fall some $10,000 short of the assistance available to farmers in Queensland and Victoria, who are able to access up to $25,000 reestablishment assistance in flood declared areas. More >
  • 11 January 2011: CANEGROWERS has confirmed that record rain events on the eastern seaboard over the past 6-months have wiped some 20% off the 2010 crop. More >
  • 10 January 2011: Information Update > Big Wet financial & mental health contacts for growers. More >
  • 5 January 2011: CANEGROWERS encourages growers to see what assistance is available to them. CANEGROWERS is encouraging growers to pick up the phone and make the call to see what assistance is available to them, following the widespread damages sustained from the big wet. More >


  • 22 December 2010: 2010 Sugar shaker - sweet and sour. CANEGROWERS has released its season 2010 roundup of the season. More >
  • 22 December 2010: CANEGROWERS says Sucrogen sale to Wilmar a vote of confidence in Aussie sugar. CANEGROWERS has warmly welcomed news that Wilmar International has successfully closed the deal on Sucrogen. More >
  • 17 Decemeber 2010: CANEGROWERS welcomes government decisions on water pricing. After months of intense lobbying by CANEGROWERS and irrigators, the Queensland Government has made the sensible decision to withdraw from imposing huge and largely unjustified increases to rural irrigators’ water bills. More >
  • 10 December 2010: CANEGROWERS supports Emerson’s straight shooting on fair trade. CANEGROWERS says the Trade Minister has cut through the bull and demanded a no-nonsense commercial, rather than geo-political approach to free trade, hitting the nail on the head for farmers and the national economy, given agriculture is the most distorted sector of global trade. More >
  • 30 November 2010: Productivity drowned: investigate existing assistance programs urges CANEGROWERS. CANEGROWERS has continued to review options for growers whose productivity has been drowned by the big wet. Acting CEO of CANEGROWERS, Ron Mullins, says there are a range of existing programs for farmers in these types of situations. He says CANEGROWERS is encouraging affected growers to explore these options. More >
  • 25 November 2010: CANEGROWERS not seeking special assistance. CANEGROWERS has confirmed they are not seeking special assistance for cane growers, after a prolonged wet has washed away the silver lining on what was shaping up to be a great year. It is, however, throwing the weight of its support behind individual growers accessing existing relief arrangements. More >
  • 23 November 2010: 200 growers attend Ravensdown Fertiliser Australia’s first annual meeting (RAVENSDOWN MEDIA RELEASE). Ravensdown Fertiliser Australia had a profitable first full year of operation, 200 shareholders heard at the company’s first annual meeting in Townsville last Thursday 18 November 2010. More >
  • 16 November 2010: CANEGROWERS says changes to QSL vital in keeping sugar marketing strongarm. CANEGROWERS says that constitutional amendments to Queensland Sugar Limited’s Constitution made today during QSL’s AGM will help keep the sugar marketing group strong for its industry stakeholders. More>
  • 16 November 2010: Don’t slash R&D – it is critical, says CANEGROWERS. CANEGROWERS says strong research and development in agriculture is mission critical and has called on government to continue its contribution to the sugar sector, which matched by industry, provides a robust platform for a positive future for the important Australian industry. More >
  • 9 November 2010: CANEGROWERS greets new player to Aussie sugar: Wilmar posed to close Sucrogen deal. A conditional approval by the Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) will likely see Wilmar International close the deal on CSR’s Sucrogen by month’s end, said peak sugarcane group, CANEGROWERS, today. More >
  • 29 October 2010: E5 slashed for now. Peak sugarcane group CANEGROWERS is disappointed that the Queensland Government has announced a delay into the introduction of the E5 mandate, while acknowledging that now may not be the time. More >
  • 25 October 2010: Cane growers seek clarification on strategic cropping land policy. CANEGROWERS is remaining cautious about the Queensland Government’s recently released strategic cropping land policy framework, saying more information and clarification is needed. More >
  • 19 October 2010: R&D booster for sugar: One-off fee a necessary impost say cane growers. The proposed one-off fee hike for sugarcane growers in 2011 is a big ask – but one that sugarcane growers across Queensland have said ‘has to happen’ to underpin the very future of the Australian sugar industry. More >
  • 5 October 2010: Sugar tour to bring the biggest news in cane to a town near you. Sugarcane growers have the opportunity to attend action-packed local meetings featuring some the biggest issues in sugarcane, at a location near them next week. Some of the headline items to be tackled include the forthcoming overhaul of the Australian sugarcane industry’s R&D sector and international experts from London giving an easy to understand grass-roots run-down on what growers need to know about forward pricing. The tour kicks off in Bundaberg on Monday 11 October and concludes in Cairns on Friday 15 October. The jam-packed agenda addresses many of the serious issues facing sugarcane growers and the cane industry. More >
  • 1 October 2010: Against the odds: Cane meets Govt ERMP demands. All sugarcane growers required by the Queensland Government to complete an Environmental Risk Management Plan (ERMP) have pulled out the stops and met the new reporting demands by deadline, reported peak sugarcane group CANEGROWERS today. More >
  • 13 September 2010: CANEGROWERS rallies Government for much needed extension. CANEGROWERS is rallying for government to overturn previous rulings in which it has refused to budge on what is looming as an impossible timeline for many of the State’s cane growers to deliver the much maligned requirement of Environment Risk Management Plans (ERMPs). More >
  • 7 September 2010: Sugarcane scoops national sustainable farming award. Sugarcane is headlining its frontline environmental stewardship again this month, scooping the prestigious national award for sustainable farming at the recent National Farmers’ Federation conference. Third generation cane growers from Dalbeg in northern Queensland, John, Bryan and Terry Granshaw were presented with the national Sustainability Award at the NFF’s national 2010 Innovation in Agriculture Awards. More>
  • 31 August: Greenwood hits the ground running as new CANEGROWERS CEO. A week of meeting representatives from every sugarcane growing region in Queensland is the first order of the day for Mr Steven Greenwood who has taken over the reins of peak body for sugarcane growers, CANEGROWERS this week. More>
  • 25 August 2010: Ballantyne Bows Out > end of an era. Ian Ballantyne signs off this week, clocking nearly two decades in the maelstrom that is the Australian sugar industry. As CEO of CANEGROWERS, one of Australia’s most respected agricultural representative bodies, he has experienced the highs and lows of this most volatile international commodity. More>
  • 23 August 2010: Farmers aren't cowboys, Cowboys tell schools. The Cowboys and CANEGROWERS recently joined forces in a bid to highlight the importance of sustainable farming practices, beginning with our nation’s youth. Schools now have access to a fun module about one of Australia’s most important agricultural commodities – sugarcane. More>
  • 26 July 2010: Sugar virtual bus tour to drive change. Sugarcane growers across Australia will receive a DVD with a difference in their letterboxes from today. CANEGROWERS is launching its “Virtual Bus Tour”, a DVD showcasing growers, on farm, showing new technology and farming practices. More>
  • 15 July 2010: Reef regulation in, but how to comply not yet clear. Confusion reigns about how farmers can comply with the onerous new Reef Regulations. There is a distinct lack of information from the Queensland Government who instigated and rushed the legislation into effect this year. They had not taken the time to develop the supporting information that could be used by farmers to work out what they need to do to comply. More>
  • 12 July 2010: Strong Aussie presence on world sugar front. The key gathering of world sugarcane and beet growers in mid-July will have a strong Australian presence as a leading world sugar producer. More>
  • 5 July 2010: Marketplace stunned by Sucrogen’s $1.75 b sale to Wilmar. Collective surprise was the sentiment shared by the sugar industry and its stakeholders this morning. More>
  • 1 July 2010: Greenwood to build on CANEGROWERS strong foundations as CEO. CANEGROWERS has announced that Mr Steve Greenwood will be heading up the peak body for sugarcane growers, taking over the reins as CEO of the strong agri-political body on 30 August 2010. More>
  • 15 June 2010: CANEGROWERS CEO talks with key sugar reps in Europe. CANEGROWERS CEO Ian Ballantyne is back in Brisbane after a short but constructive flying trip to Brussels last week where he met with European sugar industry and government representatives. More>
  • 2 June 2010: Unanimous support in CANEGROWERS Executive Elections. The Queensland Cane Growers Organisation Limited executive elections were held this week at the first meeting of the newly elected CANEGROWERS Board. The Board have shown faith in the current leadership, returning the experience of the existing team, for another term: Alf Cristaudo, Chairman; Joe Russo, Senior Vice-Chair; Paul Schembri, Vice-Chair. More>
  • 2 June 2010: Changing face of the sugar industry: Ballantyne to step down. After more than 19 years at the helm of one of Australia’s most iconic agricultural organisations, CANEGROWERS CEO, Ian Ballantyne, has announced that he intends to spend the next three months bringing some of the big issues on the boil closer to finalisation, before standing back from full time executive responsibility. More>
  • 26 May 2010 > The sweet sound of cane harvesters (and the season) starting up. The sound of sugarcane harvesters firing up will soon be heard around Queensland and northern New South Wales, as sugarcane season 2010 kicks off for another year. Tablelands Mill is the first cab off the rank, scheduled to cut its first cane this Monday, 31 May. More>
  • 18 May 2010 > Don’t axe lifeline to the bush. Farmers up and down the coast are up in arms as reports have leaked that cuts are imminent for regional reporters and their programs that farmers and those associated with agribusiness at large, rely on for credible, relevant, local and up-to-date information. More>
  • 15 April 2010: CANEGROWERS Elections 2010. Please be advised that a printed copy of the Declaration of Results pertaining to each of the CANEGROWERS Triennial Elections 2010 is being mailed to each CANEGROWERS office. More>
  • 8 April 2010: Ag colleges change offers sweeter deal for cane The proposed changes to Queensland’s agricultural colleges have been addressed in a series of regional meetings, and have been met positively although a number of sites will be sold. More>
  • 31 March 2010: Only a week left to vote in local CANEGROWERS elections. members have until 5pm on 7 April 2010 to complete and return their ballot papers to the Returning Officer for their forthcoming local elections. More >
  • 25 March 2010: Primary Industries Week QLD 19-23 April 2010. A day to teach kids about where food comes from, a celebrity cook off in Brisbane’s Queen Street mall, and a Rural Press Luncheon are just three of the events headlining this year’s Primary Industries Week 19-23 April 2010. More >
  • 22 March 2010: The real cost of Cyclone Ului will not be known until harvest says CANEGROWERS. While it is too early to accurately assess the dollar cost to the sugarcane industry from Cyclone Ului which hit the area from Proserpine to Mackay in the early hours on Sunday morning, early reports of damage from across the district have started to flood in. More >
  • 17 March 2010: Market levelling but optimistic: Sugar Update 2010. Peak sugarcane group CANEGROWERS will conduct its first briefing of its banking and commercial business partners in Brisbane on Thursday. The message to be delivered by CEO Ian Ballantyne will focus on the continued strength and resilience of the industry and that despite global sugar price contractions this month, grower confidence and optimism remains high; not for only the season ahead, but for several further seasons. More >
  • 22 February 2010: Candidates for 2010 directors elections. CANEGROWERS has announced the candidates for its 2010 Triennial Elections. More >
  • 8 February 2010: Throw your hat in the ring & nominate, cane growers urged. The strength of the Australian cane industry is built on strong regional representation, and cane growers are being encouraged to throw their hat in the ring to be part of the body tasked with driving the future of the sugarcane industry in Australia. More >
  • 28 January 2010: Ravensdown expands into soil testing & a local team. Just a year after fertiliser giant Ravensdown put its toe in the fertiliser market on the eastern seaboard, it has already set about its expansion program – launching a new soil test service very much at the behest of local growers. In addition they have consolidated their position in the Queensland and New South Wales market by adding to their local team, based out of Brisbane. More >
  • 21 January 2010: Sugar price increases sweet for everyone. Suggestions that consumers will ‘feel the pain at the supermarket’ as a result of increases in sugar prices are just plain silly according to CANEGROWERS CEO Ian Ballantyne. He says that recent alarmist reports need to be tempered with a touch of reality. Publicity given to increases in the retail price of sugar is misleading and there should be very little impact on Australian shoppers’ hip pocket. More >
  • 13 January 2010: Growers watching brief on Asian interest in CSR. Interest in CSR by one of the largest food companies in the world, Chinese-owned Bright Foods, has stormed media and financial commentary over the past 24 hours, and cane growers are keeping a watching brief on developments which would potentially impact the business of cane growing industry. More >


  • 21 December 2009: Sugar Shaker - Industry Overview 2009/10 - A Bright Light. 2009 has set the scene for 2010 to be a most positive year for the Australian sugar industry. More >
  • 12 December 2009: 18 December deadline on Ravensdown orders. Transparency and ownership were fundamental to CANEGROWERS’ participation in the establishment of Ravensdown Fertiliser Australia, a company established to supply competitively priced fertiliser products to Queensland and northern New South Wales. More >
  • 10 December 2009: Smut impact should not be understated. Peak sugarcane group, CANEGROWERS, says the ongoing cost and extent of the major disease, sugarcane smut, should not be underestimated nor its ongoing impact on profitability understated. The infestation across industry is likely to peak in 2010 and remain a major issue in 2011. More >
  • 4 December 2009: Growers get first look at reef regulation requirements. CANEGROWERS has informed the sugarcane industry that the long-awaited information for growers affected by the controversial reef legislation to be introduced by the State Government in 2010, has finally started to drop. More >
  • 16 November 2009: Cane says Ag out, but still paying price of CPRS. Exclusion from a future CPRS doesn’t mean there will be no impact on farmers, says peak sugarcane group CANEGROWERS today, following the announcement that agriculture will not be included in the Government’s latest revision of its Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme. More >
  • 12 November 2009: Reef science not rhetoric say cane growers. Over 100 people walked away from a reef meeting in Townsville this week amazed by the under-publicised uptake of good farm practice on farms around Queensland. The workshop was aimed at scientists, researchers and government commentators involved in the reef debate, rather than farmers who are at the mercy of decisions made by these people. More >
  • 9 November 2009: Ravensdown second offer just weeks away. Ravensdown Fertiliser Australia has confirmed that a further offer of fertiliser would be made to Queensland and Northern NSW farmers in the immediate future. This would be the second traunche of deliveries for the grower owned company in its first year of operation and foreshadows a rapid move towards its goal of year round supply. More >
  • 4 November 2009: Two landmark cane workshops in Townsville next week. Registrations are just days away from closing for two events to be held 9-10 November in Townsville. The Next Gen Regional Farmers Workshop which will be run concurrently with the Herbicides on the Reef Workshop have a separate focuses, but will come together to look at reef science and best management practice issues including a half day farm tour. More >
  • 20 October 2009: Use it or lose it: STL voting closes soon. CANEGROWERS has urged sugarcane growers to exercise control of their future and to vote in the forthcoming Sugar Terminal Limited (STL) elections, or the decision may be made by non-grower interests - the peak group for sugarcane growers warns. More >
  • 9 October: Cane growers applauded one day, condemned the next. Queensland cane growers have this week been applauded for their good farming practices aimed to improve reef water quality by the Federal Government and condemned by the State Government which has introduced heavy handed and inappropriate regulations to police farming practices and appease the conservation movement. More >
  • 16 September 2009: Leaner, Tougher but Definitely Sweeter. A world sugar deficit and higher Brazilian production costs have been driving sugar prices higher, which is paying dividends to a leaner, commercially focused sugarcane industry. More >
  • 3 September 2009: CANEGROWERS Backs a Healthy Reef. CANEGROWERS is assessing two documents dealing with the long term health of the Great Barrier Reef which were jointly released yesterday by the State and Federal Governments. The peak group for the sugarcane industry says one appears based on science, the other on politics. More >
  • 21 August 2009: Fertiliser Senate report links competition to lower prices. CANEGROWERS has backed the findings of the Senate Committee report into fertiliser prices that found the impact of new entrants into the Australian market such as Ravensdown led to a decline in retail prices this year. More >
  • 11 August 2009: Sugar Nears 30 Year High. There is a buzz in the air of Australian sugarcane townships across regional Queensland and New South Wales this week, with news that raw sugar prices are set to pass the $600 a tonne mark. The New York sugar market surged through 23 US cents/lb overnight, reaching close to a 30 year high. More >
  • 6 August 2009: Sugar prospects strengthen local communities. The resurgence in the Queensland sugar industry is continuing. Spring planting is shaping up to be one of the biggest in a long time and cane growers are finally looking forward to a reasonable period of profitability with analysts predicting the world sugar deficit will continue into next year. More >
  • 24 July 2009: Farmers See Criticism & Obstruction, Not Partnership. CANEGROWERS has rejected claims of a ‘partnership’ with activist group WWF, saying that farmers are practical, pragmatic people who aim to base their activities on fact and sound science, rather than the continued emotional and ideological rhetoric spewing forth from the activist group. More >
  • 2 July 2009: Queensland Govt jeopardises Federal reef approach. CANEGROWERS has welcomed confirmation of the Federal Government's funding for the next phase of Reef Rescue but warned the good work was being jeopardised by the Queensland Government's complicated legislative approach. More >
  • 16 June 2009: Black hole budget for agriculture. Disappointed rather than surprised is the feedback from farmers and rural and regional Queensland, as the State delivered its bleak black hole Budget today. More >
  • 4 June 2009: Government sells off farm and sells out farmers. Farmers are outraged they have been made a target in legislation tabled by the State Government today which in name only sets out to protect the reef, but according to peak sugarcane group, CANEGROWERS, does not deliver any such outcome. More >
  • 27 May 2009: Ravensdown-CANEGROWERS Chairmen speak out on fertiliser deal. The Chairman of CANEGROWERS, Alf Cristaudo, has applauded the groundswell of interest in Ravensdown’s entry to the eastern seaboard, which only seems to have increased since Ravensdown confirmed that it would supply Queensland and New South Wales growers with fertiliser this year. More >
  • 24 May 2009: Ravensdown to proceed: fertiliser competition greenlit. Cane growers resoundingly welcomed news that New Zealand based fertiliser co-operative, Ravensdown, had confirmed that it would proceed with the highly anticipated fertiliser importation program on the eastern seaboard. More >
  • 22 May 2009: Cop this you lot! The State Government is effectively telling the State’s agricultural industries to COP THIS! The lack of communication from the State Government on its intentions to further regulate Queensland farming has CANEGROWERS up in arms. More >
  • 20 May 2009: Fertiliser suppliers, on back of huge profits in 2008, now cry unfair. Fertiliser companies, who in 2008 extracted millions in super-profits for growers, are now purporting to have the best interests of growers at heart. More >
  • 19 May 2009: Tantalisingly Close: Fertiliser Extension Tabled. The bold exercise by CANEGROWERS and New Zealand fertiliser farmer co-operative Ravensdown to bring transparency, competition and grower determination to Queensland’s agricultural fertiliser market is within grasp. More >
  • 6 May 2009: Payment Options Boost Fertiliser Scheme. Fears that cash flow pressures would limit growers’ capacity to participate in the CANEGROWERS –Ravensdown fertiliser program have been largely overcome following an agreement by Suncorp to provide finance support which will allow growers to pay through a system of future cane payments in 2009. More >
  • 17 April 2009: Local Fertiliser Workshops Announced. CANEGROWERS is urging growers to attend meetings on fertiliser which are being held in every cane growing region during the week commencing the 27th of April. More >
  • 31 March 2009: New fertiliser player assessing the market. A major deal aimed at changing the face of fertiliser supply on Australia’s eastern seaboard is in the pipeline. More >
  • 23 March 2009: Let’s roll up our sleeves post-election: agriculture. Peak sugarcane grower group, CANEGROWERS has congratulated the Bligh Government on its re-election. More >
  • 17 March 2009: Bligh Reef Election Platform Shallow: Cane. Agriculture has long been the backbone of Queensland’s regional and rural communities, but now the backs of farmers are being used for a very different purpose – to shoulder a political agenda in an uncertain election, says CANEGROWERS. The grower’s organisation is unimpressed by the politicisation of farming and water quality in the upcoming State election. More >
  • 12 March 2009: Securing sugar’s future. At a time when Australian agriculture is fighting the impacts of the ‘GFCs’ (the Global Financial Crisis and Global Food Crisis) and preparing for the impacts of climate change and the impending imposition of the Climate Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS), the sugar industry will receive a boost to its defences when the Sugar Industry Biosecurity Plan is officially released today. The Plan provides a blueprint for protecting the industry from exotic pests and diseases such as ramu stunt, stem borer and leaf scorch. More >
  • 10 March 2009: If regulation is in, commonsense is out. The Bligh Government’s approach to increasing the already comprehensive regulation on cane growing in Queensland demonstrates that it has little comprehension of what motivates farmers, says peak sugarcane group CANEGROWERS. More >
  • 24 February 2009: Election battle lines drawn. The sugarcane industry has called for the principal parties in the forthcoming election to be clear that the State extends beyond the boundaries of Brisbane, the Gold and Sunshine Coasts. More >
  • 9 February 2009: Growers want sunlight to minimise flood damage. Queensland's cane growers are desperately seeking sunshine to enable floodwaters to recede and for their remaining crop to recover and grow after a fortnight of wet conditions. More >
  • 30 January 2009: Sugarcane a brighter part of the QLD economy. Queensland is used to seeing headlines about jobs being lost, but one sector experiencing a return to profitability and confidence is the sugar industry. More >
  • 29 January 2009: Remove the politics - show us the science. The cane industry has made huge advances in implementing good management practices which have a positive spin off for the environment, including the iconic Great Barrier Reef, says CANEGROWERS. The peak group for sugarcane growers has been bewildered at Premier Bligh’s renewed threats of the introduction of new laws that will restrict farming practices in Queensland. More >
  • 19 January 2009: NFF Release: Federal Budget ’09 must offer more than a short-term fix. With the Australian Government’s Federal Budget focus on injecting economic stimulus – and Australian agriculture vital in keeping the national accounts from falling into the red – the National Farmers’ Federation (NFF) is urging the Government to invest in long-term development and growth to sustain Australians through the global financial crisis. More >
  • 8 January 2009: What Does 2009 Hold for the Sugarcane Industry? The current international financial crisis has placed the sugar industry on the same rollercoaster as other commodities and markets, however the fundamentals of supply and demand continue to point to an international production deficit over the next two years, which in turn points to a more cautiously positive outlook for the industry in 2009. More >
  • 6 January 2009: Politics Cloud Reef Science. Farming cannot be blamed for recent declines in Great Barrier Reef coral health, according to a new report. More >