South Australian agriculture’s flagship event, GROWING SA, will be rescheduled to later in 2022 in response to the uncertain COVID-19 landscape in South Australia and interstate.

The event, which is hosted by Grain Producers SA and Livestock SA and was to be held in February 2022, will be postponed to Monday and Tuesday, 29-30 August 2022.

Livestock SA acting chief executive officer Libby Tedstone said the continued uncertainty and potential safety implications for the event’s participants with the Omicron variant were key concerns, so both organisations felt the decision to postpone was necessary.

“There is still a large level of concern regarding COVID and the potential for changing restrictions which may cast a shadow on event attendance,” Ms Tedstone said.

“The event is crucial in communicating the policy priorities and objectives of both organisations, and to highlight progress on the significant project partnerships we undertake, so we want to be able to ensure the conference has the prominence it deserves in SA’s ag calendar.

“By postponing until August 2022, we aim to give confidence to speakers, sponsors, and delegates so that we can maximise attendance, discussion and networking and ensure this Growing SA event is the best yet.”

Grain Producers SA board director Wendy Umberger said both organisations were hopeful the August timing – which is when the event is traditionally held – will ensure many of the valued local and interstate speakers and sponsors can attend uninhibited.

“We’re looking forward to operating Growing SA back in its usual home in the ag calendar and will be hosting each organisation’s AGMs on the Monday, followed by the conference dinner that night and full day of sessions on the Tuesday,” she said.

“We’re encouraging primary producers, industry stakeholders and service providers to save the new dates for Growing SA 2022.

“As has come to be expected from Growing SA, we will be providing the highest level of insights into policy development, business and economic trends, and commodity research as well as the chance to network with industry and policy decision makers.

“Growing SA has become a much loved and anticipated fixture for SA’s grains and livestock industries and the Boards of both organisations look forward to hosting you in August 2022.”

Conference organiser AgCommunicators will be in contact with sponsors, speakers, and delegates to transition the program and support to the new date.