The towns making the finals highlight the breadth of South Australia’s agricultural industries – from cereal and seed crops, to wine grapes and citrus, to sheep and cattle.
Primary Industries and Regional Development Minister Clare Scriven welcomed today’s announcement of the finalists.
“Our regions contribute $29 billion to the state’s economy each year and their contribution deserves to be celebrated,” she said.
There were 72 towns nominated for this year’s award, with the public invited to vote for their favourite.
The towns which received the most votes and made it into the Top 10 are: Ardrossan, Bordertown, Eudunda, Jamestown, Myponga, Orroroo, Strathalbyn, Waikerie and Wudinna, with Crystal Brook and Yunta tied for 10th place.
In previous years, fewer towns could take a finalist spot.
“Having a Top 10 is a new innovation as the Ag Town of the Year award evolves, providing the opportunity to widen the recognition and appreciation of the towns, their surrounding regions and of course their respective communities that make them such dynamic and welcoming places to live,” Scriven said.
The Ag Town of the Year was introduced in 2019 to recognise South Australian towns that are excelling in agricultural practices, and the flow on effect they have in supporting their vibrant and resilient communities.
Scriven said all 11 towns will go through an independent judging process to determine the three finalists, with one receiving the title.
“Congratulations to our top 11 towns and all the best for the next stage in what is a very rigorous process to become our very worthy Ag Town of the Year for 2023,” she said.
Each of the three finalists will have promotional videos and stories produced for them by Solstice Media, the publisher of InDaily.
The winning town of the 2023 Ag Town of the Year will be presented with a certificate and trophy by the minister.
They will also receive a sign for the town entrance recognising their achievement, a community celebration event and a feature in SALIFE magazine.
Of the regions’ $29 billion contribution to the state’s economy in 2021-22, primary industries and agribusiness contributed $17.3 billion, an increase of 11 per cent on the previous year.
Additionally, around 71,000 people were directly employed in primary industries and associated processing.
By revenue, the largest sectors were field crops – which includes wheat, barley, hay, canola, seeds and pulses – at $5.6 billion, livestock ($4.1 billion), wine ($2.4 billion), horticulture ($2.0 billion) and forestry ($1.4 billion).
Favourable seasonal conditions for the livestock industry, which enabled a rebuilding of herds and better carcass weights, plus significantly higher grain export prices helped to drive growth in these sectors.
Estimates released in March for the 2022-23 crop production put it at 12.8 million tonnes, which will make it the highest on record.
The Agricultural Town of the Year Award runs alongside InDaily’s regional news program and the 2023 winner will be announced at its Regional Showcase Awards in November.Jump to next article