Following her resignation as Minister for Agriculture, the Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA) has paid tribute to Senator Bridget McKenzie.
Chief Executive Officer Ross Hampton said, “In her relatively short time leading the Agriculture portfolio Senator McKenzie demonstrated enormous passion and understanding for our renewable forest industries. This did not pass unnoticed by the 80,000 people who directly work in our native and plantation-based sectors; from those who plant, harvest and replant to those processing the timber and paper products downstream.”
“It was often noted that in Minister McKenzie’s statements regarding matters affecting her portfolio she generally referred to Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry. She thereby captured and encompassed the majority of Australians who work in the food and fibre value chains of the primary industries sector.”
“In announcing the $75,000 bushfire relief grants Senator McKenzie said, ‘Our farmers, fishers and foresters have been hit extremely hard by these terrible fires. I’ve seen firsthand, farmers who have left their properties to fight fires.'”
“For this Senator McKenzie should be applauded.”
“The tragic bushfires have taken a devastating toll on Australian lives, but even before they are out, we are also counting a terrible cost in terms of plantations damaged and native forest across all tenures burnt over. It is still to be seen just how extensive the losses are, but the rebuild and renewal process will be long and expensive.”
“Senator McKenzie has been quietly active encouraging regional Australians who work in our industries of the Government’s understanding of their plight and ensuring Government processes fold forest industry concerns in with other primary sector issues.”
The original media release can be found here: Media Release – A NEW MINISTER FOR AGRICULTURE MUST STRIVE TO EQUAL BRIDGET MCKENZIE’S PASSION FOR FORESTRY