Narrogin to host WA’s inaugural OATSPO

Grain Central July 1, 2024

WESTERN Australia is one of the world’s major oat producers and exporters, and Narrogin, in the heart of its growing area, is hosting its inaugural OATSPO to bring together researchers, growers and industry stakeholders.

Organised by the WA Government and the industry-led Processed Oat Partnership, it is to be held on September 10, and will provide an overview of the latest oat research being undertaken across WA while
offering attendees a walk through the Oat Tech trial and research site.

POP steering committee chair Mark Narustrang said OATSPO was an opportunity to focus on the developments within the WA oat industry, with emphasis on breeding, innovation and market access expansion.

“The WA processed-oat industry is continuing to invest in new capacity, and is increasingly reliant on
WA growers, with demand for oats exceeding 300,000 tonnes each year,” Mr Narustrang said.

“To support this growth, the POP has invested in a range of projects and OATSPO will enable further demonstration of current oat research and development, along with a review of the latest varieties and benefits they provide.

“OATSPO will also offer insight into some of the innovations and market opportunities being developed in concert with the WA processed oat sector.”

ConsultAg’s Garren Knell. Photo: GIWA

OATSPO coordinator and ConsultAg agronomist Garren Knell, said oats were a major part of the rotation in the Narrogin region and the event would assist in demonstrating the latest R&D, and upskilling growers in adoption of recently released varieties.

“Narrogin is a major oat-growing centre for WA as it is near both grain and hay processors, so it was
the ideal location for OATSPO,” Mr Knell said.

“Oats are popular across most of WA and there is a strong desire by growers to use the most innovative techniques available to them.

“OATSPO is well timed to provide intelligence to growers and industry, in preparation for season 2025.”

Funded by Royalty for Regions, the POP was a 2021 election commitment from the WA Government and brings together the oat industry supply chain with the aim of growing the milling processed oat industry over the next two decades.

The POP aims to increase investment in the WA oat processing supply chain, including infrastructure, equipment and systems, to increase productive processing of raw oats locally, generating economic benefits for WA and increased job opportunities.

The Grain Industry Association of WA is organising OATSPO, and through the GIWA Oat Council, is the lead program partner and advisor, providing a communications portal between stakeholders.

According to ABARES data released last month, WA is pencilled in to produce 450,000t of Australia’s forecast 2024-25 crop of 1.1 million tonnes.


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