$27 mil­lion for game-chang­ing Smart Farm­ing Part­ner­ship grants

Western Times - - NEWS -

SOIL health, in­no­va­tion, dig­i­tal farm­ing and next-gen­er­a­tion weather fore­cast­ing will be im­proved thanks to $27 mil­lion in fund­ing through round one of the Smart Farm­ing Part­ner­ship grants.

Fif­teen projects will be funded through grants of up to $4 mil­lion to adopt the next gen­er­a­tion of sus­tain­able farm­ing prac­tices to ben­e­fit the fu­ture of Aussie agri­cul­ture.

Min­is­ter for Agri­cul­ture and Wa­ter Re­sources David Lit­tleproud said the multi-year grants would bring to­gether farm­ers, re­searchers and com­mu­nity groups.

“We are fund­ing projects to ben­e­fit su­gar­cane farm­ers in Queens­land, gra­ziers in Western Aus­tralia and on-farm weather fore­cast­ing in NSW,” Mr Lit­tleproud said.

“Dy­namic real-time weather fore­cast­ing helps farm­ers make bet­ter de­ci­sions.

“One project will show farm­ers how to use ma­nures and com­posts with other fer­tilis­ers to avoid dou­bling up and wast­ing money as they im­prove soil health and on-farm pro­duc­tiv­ity.

“Many con­sumers want sus­tain­ably sourced food and fi­bre, in­clud­ing sugar. New block-chain tech­nol­ogy will help sugar ex­porters track their sugar over­seas.

“In­no­va­tive tech­nol­ogy will mea­sure pas­ture pro­duc­tiv­ity against soil nu­tri­ents on graz­ing farms in Western Aus­tralia to re­duce fer­tiliser use, im­prove wa­ter qual­ity and de­liver bet­ter pas­ture.”

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