TMA, GPA, SPAA renew partnership around autonomous code

Grain Central June 21, 2024

THE TRACTOR and Machinery Association of Australia, Grain Producers Australia, and the Society of Precision Agriculture Australia have announced a three-year partnership as an extension to the period which generated Australia’s first code written to safely expedite the roll-out of autonomous farm machinery.

With input from other organisations, the Code of Practice for Agricultural Mobile Field Machinery with Autonomous Function in Australia was initially released in 2021.

GPA RD&E spokesperson and Victorian grower Andrew Weidemann said the partnership will help to increase the level of awareness and knowledge about the development and use of autonomous machinery for the Australian grains industry and broader farm sector.

“The code was developed to better support the commercial introduction of autonomous tractors and machinery into Australian field-based plant industries to address public-interest matters such as farm safety, which is a key strategic priority for GPA,” Mr Weidemann said.

“Following industry stakeholder consultation, it was finalised in late 2020 and launched by industry.

“After a period of time dedicated to seeking formal adoption by various state governments, feedback indicates the best approach now is to promote the code as an industry-led initiative.

“This partnership aims to take the code forward and build on this momentum even more to ensure it remains relevant to the pragmatic development and delivery of future initiatives and partnerships aimed at improving the adoption of this technology, and benefits for growers.”

TMA executive director Gary Northover said TMA members were looking forward to working with GPA and SPAA to deliver shared goals and outcomes as autonomous farm machinery becomes more of a commercial reality.

“This partnership will involve a number of proactive activities including an annual survey of growers to understand how they’re thinking and feeling about this technology, and their awareness of the important role our code plays in supporting its evolution and use,” Mr Northover said.

The partnership will also deliver other communication initiatives and engagement opportunities.

Source: TMA




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