The Member for Melton, Don Nardella MLA, has welcome funding for the upgrade of the irrigation infrastructure for Bacchus Marsh producers.
Mr Nardella said:
Funding of 65 million dollars for producers in the Marsh will see their ageing irrigation infrastructure upgraded to increase water security and boost agricultural production.
The Andrews Labor Government has provided these funds as part of Victorian Budget 2016/17 to ensure the on-going viability of farm businesses in the district.
These projects will underpin existing jobs in agriculture and related industries, as well as helping to create new on-farm positions through boosting farm production.
The Bacchus Marsh upgrade will modernise 43km of irrigation infrastructure, mainly through replacing open channels with pipelines, generating 1.1 billion litres of water savings annually. This will underpin 430 jobs in agriculture and related industries and lead to 42 new positions through boosting farm production.
The Bacchus Irrigation District covers an area of about 1000ha and produces lettuces, tree fruit, turf for commercial home use and other produce generating about $50 million a year.
Two thirds of the water saved from these projects will be returned to irrigators to boost agricultural production and irrigation system reliability while the remaining third will be provided to the environment.