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COVID-19 (CORONAVIRUS) Information and updates for Industry


Last updated: Tuesday 31 March 2020, 9.30am

The AMS acknowledges the significant impact the coronavirus (COVID-19) is having on communities and individuals across the world. Our thoughts are with you, your families and communities during this time of uncertainty.

We will continue to support our members and industry by providing updates  and information via our regular channels (emails & Enews) and updating this page as often as possible. However, to ensure you receive regular, timely updates in a fast-moving crisis situation, we suggest joining the AMS Facebook group now. (To join the group, you must be an AMS member or registered as a levy payer with the AMS).



Monday 30 March 2020

JOB KEEPER STIMULUS PAYMENT

Businesses will receive a fortnightly wage subsidy up to $1,500 per employee as part of a Federal Government bid to prevent millions of people from losing their jobs to the Coronavirus pandemic. Read more here. Growers and macadamia businesses wanting to register for the payment to retain employees can register their intention via the ATO website here.


FARM HUB: COVID-19 FAQ'S AND OTHER KEY INFO

FAQ's and other key information on the COVID-19 is now live on Farm Hub. Read more...


MANUFACTURER'S SUPPLY MATCHING REQUEST FORM (QLD)

If you are finding it difficult to obtain vital materials and supplies to remain open, the QLD Government now has a web form where you can register your supply needs as well as manufacturing capability. The Department of State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning will look to match supply and demand. Read more...


Friday 27 March 2020

COVID-19 PERSONAL DISCLOSURE STATEMENT

We recommend that you require all workers to fill in a worker disclosure form before starting work on your farm. Click here for the template.


WHAT STIMULUS ARE YOU ENTITLED TO? AND BUSINESS BANK LOANS

The Federal Government has flagged that additional stimulus measures will be required but what does the current Stage 1 & 2 packages that have passed parliament mean for you? A summary and in-depth information for business and individuals. Read more...


AMS UPDATE: We recommend that you require all workers to fill in a worker disclosure form before starting work on your farm. Find the template HERE.


Thursday 26 March 2020

FOOD SAFETY & QUALITY INCIDENT MANAGEMENT - ADDITIONAL MEASURES DURING ADVERSE EVENTS

Freshcare has developed a number of resources to highlight additional measures that may need to be considered to ensure businesses remain focused on delivering safe, quality fresh produce through out the supply chain. Read more...


AMS UPDATE: The AMS is linked into key working groups at the national and state levels to ensure industry issues are tabled and we can get information to members and macadamia levy payers as it comes to hand. AMS CEO Jolyon Burnett outlines a number of updates and other matters following a briefing with Federal Agriculture Minister David Littleproud. Read more...


QUEENSLAND BORDER RESTRICTIONS FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

To slow the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), the Queensland Government is implementing restricted entry to Queensland from 12:01am on Thursday, 26 March 2020. This page includes a list of frequently asked questions and links to more information. Read more...


CONTINUITY PLANNING AND MANAGING SUPPLY CHAIN DISRUPTION

Queensland Farmers Federation will deliver a series of webinars over the coming weeks to provide expert support to help minimise the COVID-19  impact on industry and lead discussions on the key issues as they unfold. The first webinar will take place today from 1.00-2.00pm. Read more...


Wednesday 25 March 2020

AMS UPDATE:

We have been asked a number of questions including:

Will government shut growers/processors/dehusking facilities down?

NO. All governments have assured us that all businesses involved in agriculture are exempt from shut down provisions. They tell us this will not change but there are no certainties at this time. Keep checking this FB page for any changes.

Will government shutdown allied services – eg machinery shops etc

NO. The answer is the same as above. Any business that supplies a farming enterprise is exempt from the shut down (although some may choose to close or restrict business hours).

Will this stop us accessing world markets?

Minister Littleproud assured us today that all ports were operating on a business as usual basis and would for as long as possible. He said there may be delays and restrictions to air freight. The Minister said they have contingency plans in place to keep exports flowing should things change but did not detail them.

He went on to say that this may be an opportunity for Australian exports to grow as we show the world we can be a reliable, consistent supplier of food in troubled times.

Will it drive the price down?

This is a conversation you should have with your processor.


AGRICULTURE JOBS ARE ESSENTIAL IN AUSTRALIA

Agriculture Minister David Littleproud has announced that Australia's food production and supply chains will not be affected by COVID-19 (Cornavirus) shutdowns. Read more...


QLD GOVERNMENT DECLARES AG AN ESSENTIAL SERVICE

The government has moved to assure Queenslanders the movement of agricultural goods will continue and transportation of produce will not be impacted by localised lockdowns or heightened interstate border restrictions. Read more...


Tuesday 24 March 2020

AMS UPDATE: The AMS has received personal assurance from NSW Minister for Agriculture Adam Marshall that primary industry production and related businesses and the entire food supply chain are NOT impacted by the new Covid-19 restrictions. These businesses can continue to operate on a ‘business as usual’ basis, though should attempt to practice appropriate social distancing measures. He says: “Primary Industries are critical to our State and Australia and the effort of every government to grapple with the developing coronavirus pandemic. Just as important is the freight industry which delivers our primary produce from the paddock or ocean to consumers’ plates.”


NSW FARMERS COVID-19 UPDATE: STAGE 2 STIMULUS PACKAGE

The Federal Government’s Stage 2 stimulus package includes an extra $66.1 billion in stimulus measures, taking the total package in response to the Covid-19 crisis to $189 billion. A business hotline for SMEs impacted by Covid-19 will now be available seven days per week, operating 7am – 11pm AEST. The hotline is 13 28 46. Click here to read the summary and more...


Monday 23 March 2020

AMS UPDATE: Peak industry hort and ag bodies, including the AMS, are working with the State and federal governments to ensure food supply chains are listed as an essential service under the Covid-19 response. Until further advice, macadamia production, processing & distribution services can continue. Members should strictly implement the necessary social distancing & sanitising measures, and any other changes in line with government guidelines.


NSW DPI CONCIERGE SERVICE: To assist industry with a clear flow of information, the NSW DPI have established a concierge service for issues related to COVID-19. This will be up and operational TODAY at noon via www.dpi.nsw.gov.au. Or you can get in touch with the concierge service by email: covidinfo@dpi.nsw.gov.au


OBLIGATIONS TOWARDS YOUR EMPLOYEES SHOULD THEY BE AFFECTED BY COVID-19

A brief discussion document on a range of circumstances businesses may face due to COVID-19 outbreak. Read more...


Saturday 21 March 2020

LOST YOUR JOB DUE TO CORONAVIRUS? HERE'S WHERE TO GET HELP

We know, understandably, macadamia businesses are worried about the workers they may have to let go at this time. The advice is to ensure the worker applies for Centrelink Jobseeker Payment. This website also offers several other useful suggestions if people find themselves unemployed. Read more....


FARMHUB: KEY INFORMATION AND UPDATES

This page contains information on basic health advice, mental health and wellbeing, the Federal Government Stimulus Package, individual state and territory assistance, business assistance, and frequently asked questions (FAQ’s). Read more...


Friday 20 March 2020

SUPPORT FOR SMALL BUSINESS

Small business employers with fewer than 20 full-time employees will be able to apply for a 50 per cent subsidy of their current apprentice’s or trainee’s wage for up to 9 months from 1 Jan to 30 Sept 2020. The subsidy will also be available to a new employer who hires a trainee or apprentice who was not able to be retained by their prior employer. Click here for further information.


FAIR FARMS WEBINAR: Workplace issues in context of the coronavirus

Australia is currently bracing for the impact of coronavirus, but how do growers protect their workers and ensure supply chains remain open? The webinar will be held Wednesday 25 march, 3.00-4.00pm. Read more...


HORT CONNECTIONS 2020 POSTPONED

Hort Connections top priority is the health and safety of the industry that provides fresh produce for Australia and New Zealand. As such Hort Connections 2020 has been postponed. Mark your calendars for Hort Connections 2021 which will be held from 7-9 June 2021 in Brisbane.


Tuesday 17 March 2020

COVID-19 (CORONAVIRUS): RESOURCES FOR BUSINESS AND THE COMMUNITY

Organisations and employers who are responsible for a workplace or venue should start to take actions now to reduce the risk of transmission of coronavirus. More information and resources regarding your responsibilities can be found here.


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Supported by Hort Innovation and Macadamia Fund

This website has been partly funded by Hort Innovation, using the macadamia research and development levy and contributions from the Australian Government.