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On-Farm Experimentation

This project will future-proof Western Australia's grains sector by demonstrating the power of digital agriculture.

In Partnership With:

WA Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development
Curtin University of Technology
CSBP

On-Farm Experimentation

The Challenge

Grains is currently the most productive agricultural sector in Australia, contributing $18 billion to national GDP. Western Australia is our largest grain producing state, and is renowned for producing high quality wheat, canola and barley for the global market.

Whilst Australia’s reputation for quality grains is high, pressures such as low rainfall and geographic spread generally result in our productivity and yield/ha rates sitting below international competitors such as the US and the EU. Indicators suggest this yield gap of Australian grains may be greatly shortened via digital transformation of farm management via tools such as spatial data management and variable-rate delivery of inputs.

These digital technologies and data management systems offer great promise for the future of on-farm decision making, and are strengthened by the input of reliable and automated data. This data is often continuously collected but its use is yet to be optimised by many WA grain growers.

The Solution

This project aims to unlock the value of collected data by placing it in the hands of producers through on farm experimentation. Growers have always trialled altering input rates or frequencies for specific plots, but have lacked the means to precisely analyse the data that comes from these trials. The project will build systems to help connect growers and their data, so that they may interpret results with confidence and use these to make better informed management decisions.

By building this system collaboratively and from the ground up, growers will be empowered in their management of farm inputs and resources, resulting in improved economic and sustainability outcomes across the Western Australian grains sector. The rollout will mimic growers’ own principles of continuous improvement by informing decisions progressively via our partnership with key stakeholders across the value chain.

To get involved

Contact Food Agility or Project Lead, Julia Easton.

Professor Simon Cook (left) and Stan Sochaki (centre) speaking with a researcher from the Muresk Institute after a recent harvest on the edge of the WA wheatbelt.

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