Legislative Council: Thursday, July 06, 2023


Agricultural Town of the Year

The Hon. R.P. WORTLEY (15:03): My question is to the Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development. Will the minister inform the chamber about the announcement of the top 10 towns left in the running for AgTown of the Year 2023?

The Hon. C.M. SCRIVEN (Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development, Minister for Forest Industries) (15:04): I thank the honourable member for his question. First of all, I would like to thank all of the 49 towns, I think it is, across the state who entered this year's AgTown of the Year competition. The diversity of towns, the regions and the different agricultural industries, which all go towards making our state the wonderful place that it is, have been well highlighted.

In such a competitive field and public voting process, it was always going to be a tough battle to get through to the next stage, but I am sure that already throughout the process so far all the towns that have participated have gained a great deal from the experience. This year's public vote was interesting. For the first time it has been a top 10, but we didn't get the top 10; we had a tie for tenth place, meaning that our top 10 is in fact a top 11.

The top 11 towns that are still in the running are, in no particular order—and I definitely would congratulate them—Ardrossan, Bordertown, Eudunda, Jamestown, Myponga, Orroroo, Strathalbyn, Waikerie, Wudinna, Crystal Brook and Yunta. I am sure that colleagues throughout the chamber on all sides here would join me in congratulating that top 11. As with the initial field of 49 towns, the top 11 really does reflect the broad range of regions and agricultural industries that we are also proud of as South Australians.

I think one of the lovely aspects of the AgTown of the Year Award is that even if you are from a metropolitan area, many people have a connection or perhaps a number of connections to the regions and particular towns. Through this public voting process, people in metropolitan areas can show their support for their favourite town or favourite region. It is also a great opportunity to be able to show support in a way that recognises and uplifts those towns, with locals able to showcase their achievements and build the sense of pride even further that we have seen has been so prevalent since the award's inception a few years ago.

From here, each of the towns will now be invited to provide written submissions to the independent panel of judges, who will then make the difficult decision to put just three towns out of those 11 through to the next stage. A winner will be declared at the regional showcase evening on Thursday 9 November. I wish the top 11 towns all the best and look forward to their showcasing all the things that make them great and make them incredible places to live.