NSW Farmers is relieved action is finally being taken to address the mouse plague crisis affecting parts of regional NSW.
Today the NSW Government announced a $50 million ‘mouse trap’ package which includes free of charge grain treatment for farmers and rebates for small businesses and households.
NSW Farmers President James Jackson said farmers have been tackling this crisis for over six months and it has hit their back pockets hard.
“Some farmers have outlaid up to $150,000 on baiting already, and we’ve seen lost grain fodder and damage to farm machinery, not to mention the stress that has accumulated on top of bushfires, drought and COVID-19,” Mr Jackson said.
“Today’s announcement has been acknowledgement from the government that this is a crisis.”
“Rural residents have been forced to endure the impacts of this plague, and our recent survey on the matter shows the immense toll it has had on people’s health and wellbeing. Communities are at their wits end.”
“We look forward to discussing these measures with Minister Marshall to find out where the bait stations will be located and opportunities to retrospectively reimburse farmers who have spent tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of dollars in baits.”
“A smooth and timely rollout is essential, especially when winter crop planting is underway.”
CEO of the Country Women’s Association of NSW (CWA of NSW) Danica Leys said this mouse plague is the latest challenge for regional communities.
“This plague is not just an economic crisis, it is turning into a health crisis. From mice contaminating food and water, to human diseases spread by mice, the plague is affecting more than crops. This is not to mention the stress the plague is causing.”
“There’s no respite when your home is being invaded by mice.”
NSW Farmers and CWA of NSW will continue their advocacy efforts for the people of rural and regional NSW.
“This bundle is an important first step, but the government must be adaptable in their response to this unfolding crisis,” Ms Leys said.