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The Hon Dr Sharman Stone
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Federal Member for Murray
8 October 2001
Federal Member for Murray and Parliamentary Secretary for the Environment and Heritage, Sharman Stone, toured Timbercorp's Boort olive tree operations this morning to take a close look at the 1,500 hectares of agricultural development that will invest $100m into the local economy.
"Timbercorp are leading the way with their investment in the most efficient and technologically advanced irrigation methods", Sharman Stone said.
"The drip irrigation method used at Timbercorp's Boort and Robinvale operations directly targets water to where it is needed most which results in a minimum amount of run-off. 7.4 million metres of drip line are used on the side of each olive tree".
"The Boort operations are a model for horticultural and agricultural developments across the country - particularly those that are using large amounts of water which we know is not sustainable in the long term", Sharman Stone said.
"The aim of the Boort operations is to promote growth, while conserving our precious water resources on the oldest, driest continent on earth".
Sharman Stone said that the Federal Government had given farm forestry operations, like Timbercorp's, a 'shot in the arm' with the announcement that plantation forestry would be able to access a 12 month pre-payment rule for expenditure on agronomic operations.
"This will allow investors to obtain an immediate deduction for funds contributed in one financial year for activities undertaken during the following year. If re-elected, I will be working hard to see this new rule extended to investment in olives and almonds", Sharman Stone said.
"It is important that we give investors certainty, particularly when their investment is being used on environmentally responsible and sustainable practices".
Sharman Stone said that Boort community had contributed a great deal to making the Murray electorate the 'foodbowl' of the nation.
"Boort is one of the leading tomato growing regions in Australia and once the first olives are harvested in Autumn next year Boort may well lay claim to being the leading olive growing region of the nation as well", Sharman Stone said.
Simon Frost 0419 495 468 or Sharman Stone 0418 392 105
October 8th 2001