COTTON Seed Distributors (CSD) has announced its first funded project under the new Richard Williams Commercial Research Initiative to support research and development of grower-facing issues in a timely and responsive manner to deliver meaningful impact.
The first project is looking at long-season cotton in Central Queensland (CQ).
The initiative originated from CQ growers and consultants wishing to identify opportunities for management improvements and for improving yield, fibre quality and resource-use efficiencies.
“Central Queensland has seen significant changes in production systems in the region where some cotton growers have adopted the long-season cotton system to adapt to these changes,” CSD commercial research manager Michael Bange said.
“Growers have identified more research is needed to understand the opportunities, challenges and risk
mitigation associated with these systems,” Dr Bange said.
The project will be led by CSD extension and development agronomist Stewart Brotherton, who will support more detailed monitoring of crop growth and associated resource use efficiencies to inform current practice or to identify the need for further research.
The initiative honours the late Richard Williams.
He was a pioneer of the modern Australian cotton industry, and in 1967 was one of its foundation directors before become its chairman from 1968 to 1989.
The Richard Williams Initiative was established to support applied and innovative research investment, to directly benefit the Australian cotton growers.
Research and development is one of six key focus areas in CSD’s strategic plan, which aims to
grow the Australian cotton crop through innovative solutions beyond seed.
To meet these objectives, Dr Bange was appointed in December to drive research outcomes supported by CSD, including the Richard Williams Initiative.
“We are really excited about bringing this initiative to the industry; it helps to complement and expand existing industry research efforts by having a strong grower focus with a direct and more immediate impact”.
Dr Bange said the initiative will be principally guided by cotton growers and their agronomists.
“We want to ensure we have meaningful engagement with the growers so we can understand their local issues and needs.
“A key to this initiative will also be to work closely with others in the industry investing in research; we want to add to what is being achieved already.”
CSD extension agronomists and CottonInfo team members would welcome ideas about future investment initiatives.