Unis poor in ag re­search: MacTier­nan

Pilbara News - - Cattle Conference - Tom Zaun­mayr

The State’s new Agri­cul­ture Min­is­ter Alan­nah MacTier­nan has called on WA uni­ver­si­ties to lift their game when it comes to agri­cul­ture re­search in the North West.

Speak­ing at the Kim­ber­ley Pil­bara Cat­tle­men’s As­so­ci­a­tion’s Ru­ralco Field Day and Con­fer­ence in Onslow last Fri­day, Ms MacTier­nan crit­i­cised WA uni­ver­si­ties for not fo­cus­ing key re­search on tropical and sub-tropical agri­cul­ture.

“We need to have a con­certed look at how we can es­tab­lish a fa­cil­ity up here — to look at the cat­tle in­dus­try, at hor­ti­cul­ture, at car­bon farm­ing, at all of these agri­cul­ture and pri­mary in­dus­tries where we know there is un­der­in­vest­ment,” she said.

Ms MacTier­nan pointed to east coast uni­ver­si­ties, in­clud­ing James Cook Univer­sity, as good ex­am­ples of tropical agri­cul­ture re­search fa­cil­i­ties.

“I sus­pect that un­til we are able to get a se­ri­ous re­search in­sti­tu­tion based up here, we are go­ing to con­tinue to be the poor cousins to the North­ern Ter­ri­tory and Queens­land,” she said. “I don’t think we need a new univer­sity — I think we have too many al­ready in fact — but we need to get one or more in col­lab­o­ra­tion to fo­cus on re­search up here.”

The Onslow KPCA Ru­ralco Field Day and Con­fer­ence be­gan with a tour of Ua­roo and Min­deroo Sta­tions.

Guest speak­ers in­cluded Ru­ralco, Fron­tier In­ter­na­tional, ANZ, NBF, Revell Sci­ence, MLA, Har­vey Beef, the De­part­ment of Lands, Iron­gate Wagyu, a Nuffield scholar and Auc­tion­sPlus.

Pic­ture: Tom Zaun­mayr

Agri­cul­ture Min­is­ter Alan­nah MacTier­nan at the Pil­bara Kim­ber­ley Cat­tle­men's As­so­ci­a­tion con­fer­ence in Onslow.

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