Mark Stanley comes from a mixed farming background and has had extensive experience in field crops development and extension and more recently in natural resources management within the State and Commonwealth Governments and with industry.
Mark currently operates his own project management business, Regional Connections, on South Australia’s Eyre Peninsula.
He is contracted to lead a large carbon farming outreach and extension project with the Commonwealth Department of Agriculture, and provides executive leadership to Ag Excellence Alliance, supporting farming groups across SA.
He is on the board of the Eyre Peninsula Agriculture Research Foundation and is a committee member of the Lower Eyre Agricultural Development Association as well as providing strategic executive support to Ag Excellence Alliance.
Mark’s vast experience in the agricultural sector meant he was well placed to take on a position with the GRDC Southern Regional Panel.
“My whole life has been about farming, and I have a passion for grain production in particular, especially the research and extension aspects of the industry,” Mark says.
“I thought I had a lot to give back to the industry and that is why I became a Panel member.”
Mark is keen to see more progress in helping growers tackle issues such as soil constraints, herbicide resistance, input cost management and growing crops that meet market demands, ultimately making southern region farm businesses more sustainable.
“I would say the main issue on Eyre Peninsula is soil constraints. We’ve got a variety of soils on the peninsula so we have issues with sodicity, non-wetting sands and duplex soils.
“We have sand over impenetrable clay layers that cause water logging issues down south. Soil would be the biggest constraint in terms of yield potential,” Mark says.
GRDC investments in research and development are focused on helping growers overcome such constraints.
“Other pressing issues are sustainability of our farming systems in relation to herbicide resistance, and input costs, particularly nitrogen. We have projects on the Eyre Peninsula that are addressing these issues.”
Mark says his role as a Panel member is to represent growers in his region by bringing regional issues to the attention of the GRDC.
“It’s a two way conduit – communicating from the region back to GRDC and then from GRDC back to the region.
“I will be using my experience in industry networks to raise those issues, to prioritise those issues and make sure they get addressed through GRDC investment.”
Mark encourages growers in his region and beyond to make contact with him or one of the Regional Cropping Solutions Network members on the EP, should they have an issue they wish to raise with the GRDC.
M 0427 831 151