It is a difficult subject, but how to talk about debt with your bank manager, is one of the key topics on the program at the Grains Research and Development Corporation's (GRDC) Dealing with the Dry forums being run in southern Queensland and northern New South Wales next week.
Initiated by GRDC Grower Relations Manager - North, Susan McDonnell, the forums aim to deliver practical advice on debt management, on-farm agronomy, farm business strategies and mental health and government support options for those involved in the grains industry and associated sectors.
A grain grower herself, Mrs McDonnell said like many people in the bush, she had a firsthand understanding of the financial, physical and emotional pressure that came with a run of tough seasons.
"These forums are about providing information that effectively supports the farming operation, the farm business and importantly the people involved, during the high stress times of drought," she said.
"As growers, we all know our long-term business goals have been put on hold due to our income changes with the drought, so this is about understanding the different ways we can do things such as effectively manage our debt and limited cash flow while planning for the future.
"These forums are also a reminder to communities that we are all in this situation together and there are things we can do to put ourselves, our farms and farming businesses in the best possible position to come through this drought."
These forums are about providing information that effectively supports the farming operation, the farm business and importantly the people involved, during the high stress times of drought.
Dealing with the Dry forums are being delivered to drought-affected rural and regional communities to ensure those most in need of the information can easily attend.
Topics on the program include:
- Access to government services during dry times.
- Management of dry conditions and effective decision making (benchmarking, addressing the issues and agronomic constraints that come from prolonged dry seasons ie residuals, impact on soils from extended periods of limited ground cover).
- Farm business management in drought (accessing and optimising resources, retaining staff).
- Effective debt management (tips on how to optimise your position, hints on how to ensure banks will look favourably on extending finance, debt security, managing input costs).
The free-of-charge GRDC Dealing with the Dry forums are open to growers, farm advisers, community members and industry stakeholders. This round of forums will be held on:
- November 11, Meandarra, QLD - Meandarra School of Arts Hall, 1-4pm
- November 12, Felton, QLD - Felton Community Hall, 1-4pm
- November 13, Bellata, NSW - Bellata War Memorial Hall, 10am-1pm
- November 14, Narromine, NSW - Narromine Aero Club, 10am-1pm.
GRDC Project Code: SEF1903-001SAX