We have just seen big rain in some parts Queensland and Australia, the drought is over! Or is it? Let’s look at it from the farmer’s point of view.
No, it doesn’t rain money, but it is good to see the rain, we pray for rain and thank God for it, but after a drought, like we just had in the last few years, the farmer’s struggle goes on.
Financially the farmers have been set back many years, they will need two or three years of good seasons to get back to where they were before the drought even started.
Following are some more points we all must consider if we want to understand what is happening in rural Australia.
Big rain on droughted cattle takes its toll. Feeding cattle in dry weather is hard enough, but feeding cattle after a drought in the wet, muddy and flood conditions is near impossible. The farmer has to get fodder to their stock somehow.
The graziers who had to sell their stock through the drought to survive, or lost them through starvation, now have to buy replacement stock at a record high prices.
The rain came too late for many crops as they had failed; a major loss for fuel, seed and fertiliser.
Excessive rain on ripe crops downgrades the quality.
Grasshopper, army worm and mice infestations cost the farmer dearly for chemical and application costs.
The banks and creditors still want their money.
For many farmers their next income could be up to 12 months away. So, when you see green grass in paddocks and crops growing in the fields, please don’t think that the farmer’s problems are all over.
Lutheran Drought Aid is there to help those farmers who are doing it tough. We are there to listen, help and keep our farmers’ hopes and dreams alive.
If you hear of anyone whose livelihood has been affected by drought (whether they are a farmer or rural worker) please encourage them to get in touch with Lutheran Drought Aid Queensland firstname.lastname@example.org because we have some help to pass on.
Dale is a member of the volunteer lutherandroughtaidqld.org.au team