The Hart Field-Site Group in South Australia has been awarded a grant for development of a new field research facility.
GRDC Chairman John Woods said the Hart Field-Site Group had received a GRDC Grains Research and Development (R&D) Infrastructure Grant for more than $71,000 to enable the Mid North farming systems group to build and fit-out a structure.
The Hart Field-Site Group has contributed an additional $7900 to the project which will also involve installation of solar panels and battery storage units.
The new shed will enable the Hart Field-Site Group to undertake grains research activities – such as soil and plant sample preparation, seed storage and packing, and preparation of treatments – in a more efficient manner.
GRDC deputy chief executive, Dr Steve Thomas, said the Hart Field-Site Group had been an important research partner of the GRDC for many years and that its research, development and extension (RD&E) activities – many of which are GRDC investments – continued to generate beneficial outcomes for growers.
“The group is well recognised and respected, not only throughout the Mid North but well beyond, for its commitment to the grains industry. Its field trial site hosts relevant and innovative research that each year plays a valuable role in informing growers’ agronomic decisions.”
Hart Field-Site Group’s research and extension manager Dr Sarah Noack said the organisation was excited to partner with GRDC to continue to deliver high quality grains research to growers.
“For 35 years, Hart has conducted research and trials to improve productivity and sustainability for growers,” Dr Noack said.
“The new field lab facility will improve the efficiency of our operations, including processing soil, plant and grain samples throughout the season. Having permanent access to power will allow us to run research equipment on-site, an option not previously available to us without this grant.”
Federal Member for Grey, Rowan Ramsey said this was an important opportunity for the Hart Field-Site Group.
“The facility will provide long-term storage and workspace for grains research activities such as soil and plant sample preparation, seed storage and packing, and preparation of treatments such as seed coating and fertilisers,” he said.
“It will lead to more efficient research operations, giving the Hart Field-Site Group permanent access to power throughout the season and allowing it to run research equipment on-site for the first time.
“This important research will be applied to improve crop productivity and resistance to disease, thereby strengthening the national grains industry and boosting farm profitability.”
Sources: GRDC, Deputy Prime Minister