Grains park to mark mile­stone

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - News -

Hor­sham’s Grains In­no­va­tion Park will mark a mile­stone this year when it cel­e­brates its 50th an­niver­sary.

Grains In­no­va­tion Park, GIP, of­fi­cially opened on Novem­ber 29, 1968 as the Vic­to­rian Wheat Re­search In­sti­tute.

Vic­to­rian wheat grow­ers and the State Gov­ern­ment jointly funded the orig­i­nal cen­tre to breed wheat va­ri­eties for Vic­to­ria.

Vic­to­rian Wheat Re­search Foun­da­tion was a key driver be­hind the es­tab­lish­ment of the re­search fa­cil­ity and con­tin­ues to have an on­go­ing in­volve­ment as trustees of the site.

Since its in­cep­tion, Grains In­no­va­tion Park, which has also been known as the Vic­to­rian Crops Re­search In­sti­tute, VCRI, and the Vic­to­rian In­sti­tute for Dry­land Agri­cul­ture, VIDA, has grown to be­come one of Hor­sham’s largest work­places.

To­day, GIP is a base for the De­part­ment of Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment, Jobs, Trans­port and Re­sources, DEDJTR, in­clud­ing Agri­cul­ture Vic­to­ria and Re­gional De­vel­op­ment Vic­to­ria, along with the De­part­ment of En­vi­ron­ment, Land, Wa­ter and Plan­ning, DELWP, Vic­to­rian Fish­eries Author­ity and Parks Vic­to­ria.

Pri­vate busi­nesses also op­er­ate from the pur­pose-built busi­ness cen­tre at the site.

Dur­ing the past 50 years the many peo­ple em­ployed at the cen­tre have made a sig­nif­i­cant eco­nomic and so­cial con­tri­bu­tion to the re­gion as well as to the grains in­dus­try as a whole.

To cel­e­brate its many achieve­ments, Grains In­no­va­tion Park will open its doors to the pub­lic this year.

A team is putting to­gether a dis­play recog­nis­ing the site’s his­tory and show­cas­ing the work car­ried out at the park.

From July, stake­hold­ers, busi­nesses, schools and com­mu­nity groups have in­vi­ta­tions to book tours of the site, which will take in the world­class phe­nomics fa­cil­ity, Aus­tralian Grains Genebank, and a spe­cially planted her­itage trial that will fea­ture crop va­ri­eties grown in the re­gion for the past 50 years.

Hor­sham His­tor­i­cal So­ci­ety will also help cu­rate and ar­chive some of GIP’S his­tory as it works towards a pub­li­ca­tion for re­lease in 2019.

An­niver­sary cel­e­bra­tions will cul­mi­nate with an open day from 1pm to 6pm on Oc­to­ber 18, which will in­clude site tours, demon­stra­tions and static dis­plays.

Or­gan­is­ers have urged peo­ple to fol­low de­vel­op­ments on a Grains In­no­va­tion Park web­page, agri­cul­ture.vic.gov.au/hor­sham.

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