Six new regional agronomy roles are being created in regional South Australia as part a $50 million deal between the State Government and the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC).
The five year bilateral agreement included $25 million from GRDC and $25 million from the South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI), a division of Primary Industries and Regions SA (PIRSA).
“The new regional research agronomists will be critical in boosting research targeted to the priorities of the key South Australian cropping regions, including the Eyre Peninsula, Mid North and Yorke Peninsula, the South East and the Mallee,” SARDI’s Acting Executive Director Kathy Ophel-Keller said.
“These agronomists will not only be able to deliver high quality, locally relevant research in the major cropping regions of South Australia, but provide a vital link with regional grain growers and agribusinesses.
“They will be instrumental in delivering the benefits of national research initiatives, and tailoring the outcomes to the state’s cropping regions. The research will assist cereal growers to reduce risk and increase profitability.
“The new agronomists will work within existing SARDI regional teams, and utilise the investment by PIRSA in improved facilities at regional sites such as Clare and Loxton.
“The research agronomists will specialise in areas of relevance for each region. For example, In the Mid North and Yorke Peninsula, the focus is likely to be on weed management, and in the Upper Eyre Peninsula, they will be working with national initiatives to better manage heat and frost risks.
“The focus in the Mallee will be on overcoming constraints to crop growth on sandy soils while in the South East they will be working on the integration of grazing and cropping systems.”
GRDC is a statutory authority under the Commonwealth Government.