Data is a businessperson’s friend. With the right information, you can monitor and evaluate trends over time, track income against expenses, and assess which decisions reaped the greatest benefits.
During our ongoing discussions with people affected by the 2019 North Queensland flood event, there is much talk about the merits of supporting businesses to make better use of data so they can respond to opportunities and threats, and be in a better position to apply for grants and loans.
It’s considered one of the top priorities for ongoing recovery from the event, and to improve the region’s prosperity and resilience in the face of future economic shocks. This is reflected in the “Building prosperous enterprises” priority of the locally-led long-term recovery strategy.
Regional Recovery Officer for Townsville-Mackay Emma Rush, said producers and grazers know a lot about their properties and their businesses, but often that knowledge is in their heads and not formally captured in records.
“That’s not overly helpful when a natural disaster hits and the full extent of any damage needs to be correctly assessed to access support and undertake repair works, or for future generations to compare changes to the landscape over time,” Emma said.
With this in mind, AgForce has been running free mapping workshops across the region, under the joint Australian and Queensland Government Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements established after the 2019 event.
Using special mapping software, landowners can map different aspects of their property, from the location of infrastructure to watercourses, erosion to soil types.
We recently caught up with Emma and AgForce’s Noel Brinsmead at a workshop for cane farmers at Ingham. By all accounts it was a winner!