"If you want food that is grown locally and seasonally you need to come out and vote with your wallet and say 'this is what I want'."
That's the strong message Slow Food Earth Market Maitland chairwoman Amorelle Dempster had as she celebrated National Agriculture Day in The Levee on Thursday.
The day is an opportunity to reflect upon the farming men and women who produce food and help us to put it on our tables. It's also a chance to celebrate the industry as a whole.
Ms Dempster said supporting local farmers was the only way to help secure their future on the land.
With the drought already biting, and the path to growing food more challenging than ever, she said farmers needed all of the help they could get.
"For too long it has been said that consumers have a lot of choice in the supermarkets. We need consumers to take responsibility of the food they are going to eat in the future," she said.
"Everybody's produce is less because of water restrictions and the lack of rain means what they are growing isn't germinating on its own.
Read more: The Big Dry - everything you need to know about the drought
"This is a serious issue that if this weather continues there will be very tough times ahead."
Ms Dempster said the country had to acknowledge that climate change was impacting on the agriculture industry.
"We need to address this now, it's too late to be talking about it next agriculture day," she said.
"We're all living in a false sense of security because if we don't talk about the relationship between climate change and our food security we are really not addressing the issue about how we are going to feed our own people.
In other news: Call for feedback on Hunter desalination plant
"People who think that Genetically Modified Organisms are going to feed the world should really stop and think about what we already have right now and how we are going to protect it and keep it going.
"We should be putting our resources into supporting our farmers to help them put food on our tables. We need to be able to feed the people now."
Ironically, in the middle of the worst drought in living memory, a part of High Street was in flood due to a burst water pipe on Thursday morning.
It had farmers in a real spin, but for all the wrong reasons. It's getting hard to remember what it was like to see that much water on the ground.
National Agriculture Day is held annually on November 21 and is the brain child of Gina Rhinehart. It is supported and organised by the National Farmers Federation with help from the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources.
The earth market is on Thursday, December 5 and Thursday, December 19 from 12.30pm.