Young grains forum to address issues and opportunities

Author: | Date: 14 Jan 2011

David Shannon

Young grains forum to address issues and opportunities

Key points:

• GRDC Adviser Update at Young on February 15-16
• Focus on ‘Farming to Potential’

Opportunities and challenges arising from recent wet conditions will be explored and addressed at next month’s Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) Adviser Update at Young.

The Update on February 15 and 16 will be an important forum for grains industry advisers and growers throughout southern New South Wales as they deal with issues stemming from the unseasonal finish to the 2010 harvest.

GRDC Southern Regional Panel chair David Shannon said that while the 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 Young Update would feature a strong overlap between cutting-edge research results and current seasonal and related issues.

“The Update 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.

“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 also discuss global and domestic trends.”

Mr Shannon said that most importantly, the GRDC Updates aimed 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 at the Young forum 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.

Growth Farms Australia Chief Executive Officer David Sackett will address the performance and profitability associated with broadacre farming investment, while Dr Jim Virgona from Charles Sturt University will discuss the concept of evidence-based agriculture.

Growing more crops with less weeds will the subject of a presentation by Professor Steve Powles from the Australian Herbicide Resistance Initiative, based at the University of WA, while Dr Chris Preston from the University of Adelaide will speak about the glyphosate resistance threat and the latest herbicide management tools.

The Update at the Young Services Club will also feature information on pesticide application and spray drift management, water use efficiency and integrated fodder systems on mixed farms. A series of concurrent sessions will discuss and analyse a variety of farming methods, stubble management, crop types, pest and disease management, frosts and seeding systems.

A highlight of the two-day event will be the dinner at the Young Golf Club on February 15, featuring guest speaker Nils Vesk, a professional designer skilled in helping businesses and individuals – particularly those in stressful and high-pressure situations – create and execute innovative ideas.

A dynamic and engaging presenter, Nils helps people come up with good ideas, hold onto them and turn them into a reality. He is the author of the best-selling book Life's Little Toolbox and has worked with some of Australia’s biggest companies who seek his expertise in accelerating business growth through innovation.

A detailed program for the Update can be obtained by visiting or by contacting ORM on 03 5441 6176 or email


• 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