Steph Cooke crouches on a dirt road in front of a mob of sheep who eat from a feed trough.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke has today welcomed the appointment of Daryl Quinlivan to the role of NSW Agriculture Commissioner, labelling him a strong ally for farmers in the Cootamundra electorate.

Minister for Agriculture Adam Marshall announced Mr Quinlivan’s appointment, and Ms Cooke said that it was yet another election commitment fulfilled by the NSW Nationals in Government.

“Farmers in the Cootamundra electorate have today gained a formidable fighter in their corner,” Ms Cooke said.

“We are determined to protect the right to farm, and the appointment of the state’s first ever Agriculture Commissioner is a significant step towards further strengthening those rights.

“Daryl will be particularly focused on resolving land use conflict and identifying growth opportunities for industry.”

Mr Quinlivan comes to the role with strong leadership experience and a track record of practical contributions to policy development, having previously served as the Secretary of the Commonwealth Department of Agriculture and Water resources.

“Daryl is an excellent choice for this key role,” Ms Cooke said.

“He is widely respected within our primary industries, and is prepared and willing to stand up for our farmers as they fight their way out of this record-breaking drought.

“Farmers in our region, like all across the State, have battled through one of the driest times on record, but as some seasonal conditions begin to improve, they need to be sure they are free to farm in the most effective and efficient ways possible.

Today’s announcement will further strengthen NSW farmers’ right to farm, following the passage last year of the NSW Nationals Right to Farm Bill 2019.