Farm to your potential with GRDC Ballarat Adviser Update

Author: | Date: 17 Jan 2011

Farm to your potential with GRDC Ballarat Adviser Update

Key points:

• GRDC Adviser Update to be held at Ballarat on February 9 and 10
• Focus on ‘Farming to Potential’
• Delivery of latest agronomic advice

Developing farming potential and making the most of soil moisture stored during 2010’s wet spring and summer will be the focus of a Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) Adviser Update to be held in Ballarat next month.

Last year’s extraordinary conditions, which have continued into January and caused further delays to harvest, leave in their wake fresh challenges for grain growers in southern Australia.

GRDC Southern Regional Panel chair David Shannon said that while the unseasonal rainfall had boosted soil moisture profiles, which augured well for next season, this potential was tempered by management challenges such as weed control, soil nutrition levels and the volume of residue in paddocks.

Bearing this in mind, Mr Shannon said the Ballarat Update would feature a strong overlap between cutting-edge research results and current seasonal and related issues.

“It will deliver practical advice and critical information to industry advisers to ensure growers have the tools to take maximum advantage of the current conditions and set their farm businesses up for a profitable and productive future,” Mr Shannon said.

“Grain growers and industry advisers operate in a climate of continual change, but this season’s challenges will differ from those of recent years due to the soil moisture levels,” Mr Shannon said.

“Through the Adviser Update series we endeavour to examine and break-down avenues to combat grain growing challenges, provide information on new technology, farming practices and science and discuss global and domestic trends. Most importantly the Updates aim to enable grain professionals to improve productivity and profitability within the current climatic parameters.

“The industry is growing increasingly competitive, add in climate variability, escalating crop input costs and fluctuating commodity prices, and growers have a real need to better understand and operate their farming business.

“The Updates offer the information and tools to assist growers and the industry as a whole to get better at what they do.”

Among the keynote speakers will be Ron Storey from Storey Marketing Services who will discuss national and global grains trends, including a discussion on markets for key grains, shifts in market fundamentals and growers’ changing attitudes to marketing.

Australian Farm Fund Management’s Frank Delahunty will discuss how highly efficient production and management systems will improve the performance of a broad acre farm, key performance indicators to focus on and return on investment.

Matthew Sparke from Dodgshun Medlin Agricultural Management will discuss nutrition needs in the 2011 season, while Dr James Hunt from the CSIRO Plant Industries and Claire Brown from the Birchip Cropping Group will discuss improving water efficiency and how to manage this in a mixed farm enterprise.

The Update will also feature information on stubbles and seeding systems, pesticide application and spray drift management and linking paddock recommendations with whole farm risk.

A series of concurrent sessions will discuss and analyse a variety of farming methods, crop types, pest and disease management and updates from the Birchip Cropping Group and Southern Farming Systems.

The two-day Ballarat Update will run from February 9 to 10. Detailed programs for the GRDC Adviser Updates can be obtained by visiting or by contacting ORM on (03) 5441 6176 or email


Editor’s notes:

• For more information contact ORM on 03 5441 6176 or email


• GRDC Project Code: ORM00001

• This media release and other media products are available via

GRDC Project Code ORM00001