SA growers to shape research investment

Grain Central, June 5, 2023

Sam Trengrove will be speaking at the Coonalpyn event on June 26. Photo: GRDC

SOUTH Australian grain growers in the south-east of the state are invited to help direct how their levies should be invested in research, development and extension for the grains industry.

Australian grain growers pay levies on 25 grain crops to support industry-relevant RD&E, and the Grains Research and Development Corporation is tasked with investing these funds on behalf of the industry.

GRDC’s National Grower Network (NGN) brings together growers and grains industry stakeholders to directly engage with GRDC to help develop locally relevant RD&E investments, and four of these will be held across the South East from June 26-29.

Lameroo grain grower and GRDC Southern Panel member Lou Flohr said NGN forums were a great opportunity for growers to speak directly to GRDC staff and have a say.

“The NGN forums are the most direct way growers can tell GRDC what issues they are observing and experiencing on their farms, and what RD&E they think is required to improve their farm business,” Ms Flohr said.

“Plus, when we all get together there is a great synergy where new ideas can be generated.

“The experts invited to speak at the NGN forums are also identified based on the interests of local growers – so growers also get to hear some of the most recent research updates relevant to their region.”

Previously, through GRDC’s consultation process, growers from SA’s Upper South East identified the need to fill knowledge gaps relating to the agronomic management of recently ameliorated soils.

As a result, GRDC invested in research with the Mackillop Farm Management Group in 2022 to characterise soils and conduct trials and pit demonstrations in the region, and to share results via extension activities.

GRDC grower relations manager south Courtney Ramsey also noted the large number of NGN investments in the pipeline thanks to the ideas generated by growers.

“We’re in the process now of contracting spray workshops in the mid-north of SA, a stripper front project and a lentil check project for the upper Eyre Peninsula,” Ms Ramsey said.

“It’s exciting for us, and for growers who attend and contribute via our NGN forums, to see grower ideas translate directly into projects and then into improved knowledge that growers can put into practice in their own farming systems.

“I encourage growers who haven’t been to an NGN before to come – not only do you get to help guide how we invest, but we also have experts speaking about local issues of interest too.”

Speakers and details of the upcoming NGN forums include:

  • Coonalpyn: June 26, 5-8pm, Coonalpyn Hotel. Featuring Sam Trengove of Trengove Consulting on powdery mildew-resistance development, the impact of varietal resistance on mildew development and what fungicide products work, including new permitted actives. He will also provide an update on some recent research around sands amelioration, soil pH mapping and subsurface acidity management.
  • Naracoorte: June 27, 1-5pm, Naracoorte Town Hall. Featuring Ashley Amourgis of Southern Farming Systems on recovery strategies for waterlogged crops, and Elders agronomist Adam Hancock on nitrogen strategies to mitigate yield loss from waterlogging.
  • Loxton: June 28, 1-5.15pm, Loxton Hotel. Featuring Barry Mudge of Barry Mudge Consulting on the new GRDC risk initiative which considers nitrogen management risk and reward, plus making risky decisions, and WeedSmart’s Chris Davey on hard-to-manage weeds using herbicide, mechanical and cultural tactics.
  • Bowhill: June 29, 1-5.15pm, Bowhill Community Centre, with details as for Loxton.

A facilitated workshop session will also give growers the chance to share which factors they think affect local farm productivity and profitability most.

NGN forums are free of charge and will be led by GRDC grower relations managers Courtney Ramsey and Rebekah Starick.

Registration is essential, and refreshments and food will be provided.

Source: GRDC


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Your comment will not appear until it has been moderated.
Contributions that contravene our Comments Policy will not be published.


Get Grain Central's news headlines emailed to you -