Weekly Update 9th March 2022

Published on March 9, 2022

Our pick of current industry news, events, developments and opportunities:

Flooded farmers pull together market in Lismore to feed hungry locals fresh produce

Despite the catastrophic floods, farmers trucked much-needed fresh produce to Lismore on the weekend.

The Lismore Farmers Market, held at the showground, was able to go ahead after a massive clean-up effort by volunteers.

Read more at ABC News

WA businesses to benefit from COVID-19 relief sooner

Support for small businesses affected by public health safety measures will come sooner than expected, with detailed eligibility criteria now released and applications opening as soon as next week.

The recently announced $67 million Level 1 Business Assistance Package and $72 million Level 2 Business Assistance Package have been updated, with periods of reduced turnover shortened to deliver assistance sooner.

For more details on eligibility, visit the Western Australian Government website

New global fresh produce body reassures Australian members

HAVING input to the organisation on a world stage has been touted as one of the benefits for Australian members of the newly announced International Fresh Produce Association.

In January 2022 the Produce Marketing Association, including PMA A-NZ, joined the United Fresh Produce Association to create the brand-new entity.

Find out more on The Land

Emergency financial support for people affected by floods

If you have been affected by severe weather and flooding in NSW from 22 February 2022 onwards you may be eligible for financial assistance. 

Find out more here.

For further assistance, we have compiled a list of resources available around Australia for regional communities below.

Natural Disaster Relief

Flood Relief for NSW, Queensland and Victoria residents.

If you’re being affected by an active natural disaster, Services Australia have specific payments to help.

Find out if you’re eligible here and look up specific areas that are currently being assisted on Disaster Assist.

Residents in targeted areas in Gympie and Dallarnil who have been impacted by severe flooding over recent days may be eligible for financial assistance, including Emergency Hardship Assistance grants of up to $180 per person and $900 for a family of five or more.

Applications can be made through Community Recovery Portal.

Natural Disaster Relief for Queensland Businesses

The Queensland government is currently providing grants and loans for businesses affected by flooding and receiving survey submissions on how businesses have been impacted and what assistance they require.

Find out more at Business Queensland.

NSW Flood Assistance Resources

NCOSS (NSW Council of Social Service) have compiled a list of useful resources for NSW individuals and communities impacted by the floods in NSW. This includes evacuation, financial support, disaster response guidance and safety information.

Find out more at NCOSS

COVID Relief

Western Australia

Level 1 COVID-19 Business Assistance Package

A new COVID-19 Business Assistance Package has been announced for Western Australian businesses adversely affected by increasing COVID-19 cases in the community and the necessary implementation of Level 1 public health and social measures.

Small business tenants can apply for rental relief grants of up to $3,000 (based on $500 per week for 6 weeks).

To be eligible for the Rent Relief small business must meet the following criteria:

  • Have an annual turnover of more than $50,000.
  • Have a valid and active Australian Business Number (ABN).
  • Have an Australia-wide payroll of less than $4 million.
  • Be able to demonstrate a 30 per cent reduction in revenue for any six-week consecutive time frame between 1 January 2022 to 30 April 2022, compared to the equivalent period in 2021.
  • Provide proof of tenancy (lease) in WA (excluding Government tenants).

Visit Small Business Development Corporation for more information.

Further resources for COVID and disaster support can be found here for Victoria, South Australia, Northern Territory, NSW, Queensland and Tasmania.

Benestar Mental Health Support

The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) provided by Benestar is a confidential counselling, coaching, and wellbeing service free for all Freshcare certified businesses, their staff, and immediate family members.  The service offers help to manage work and life experiences, issues, or concerns that arise from time to time. 

Access hours of health and wellbeing blogs, podcasts, videos, meditations, self-assessments, activities and more via the BeneHub website and app. View content anytime, anywhere or speak to one of Benestar’s coaches using LiveChat or online messaging. 

To register simply follow the steps below to create your BeneHub account. 

  • Visit www.benestar.com and go to BeneHub Login 
  • Enter Company ID FCR and Token FCR01 

For more information visit www.freshcare.com.au/benestar-eap

Freshcare Resources

Factsheet – Incident Management: Flood Event

Covid-19 Resources