SRA to invest $18.9 million in 2016/2017 and continue focus on key Impact Areas

Date Posted

25 May, 2016

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Sugar Research Australia (SRA) has announced its research investment agenda for 2016/2017, delivering research and development outcomes that provide direct benefits to sugarcane growers and millers.

SRA Chairman Dr Ron Swindells said that SRA would invest $18.9 million in contestable research activities for 2016/2017.

“SRA is making this investment in projects that will deliver real benefits on key issues for our investors,” Dr Swindells said. “In seeking new projects, SRA put the call out for projects that focus on the four Impact Areas of Yellow Canopy Syndrome (YCS); conventional and genetically modified plant breeding; harvesting efficiency; and extension and adoption.

“These four Impact Areas have been identified as requiring priority investment from SRA for the Australian sugarcane industry.

“In addition, we also continue to address the eight Key Focus Areas identified in SRA’s strategic plan.

“Our investment includes new projects to commence in the 2016/17 financial year.

“These new projects will improve our varieties through introgression techniques and selections based on plant vigour; improve industry productivity through the analysis of industry data; address new chemical approaches for canegrub control; and improve identification methods for exotic moth borers and soil-borne pathogens.

“Our investment will also include a new three-year project being developed with the University of New England to develop a remote sensing platform.”
Dr Swindells said SRA continues to invest in projects that have a priority on delivering tangible outcomes on-farm and at the mill.

SRA’s investment is funded by the statutory levy of 70 cents per tonne of cane, to which growers and millers each contribute 35c per tonne of cane each. This investment in research is supported by matching funds of about $6M from the Federal Government and an average of $4M from the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) over the previous 4 years.

The list of successful new projects is available on the Sugar Research Australia website here. The full portfolio of contestable research investment is also available here.

Media contact: SRA Brad Pfeffer 0419 175 815

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