Skipton grains forum to support local growers

Date: 10 Aug 2011

Skipton grains forum to support local growers

Key points:

• GRDC Grower Update to be held at Skipton on August 24
• Focus on harvest management, slug control, cropping/livestock balance and other grain research developments

Grain growers throughout the Western District of Victoria will gather in Skipton this month to discuss regional agronomic issues and to equip themselves for the remainder of the crop growing season and the coming harvest.

The Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC), supported by Southern Farming Systems, is hosting a research Update for growers on August 24 at the Skipton Golf Club.

GRDC Southern Regional Panel chair David Shannon says the Update will offer local growers insights into cutting-edge research and the latest recommended practices and systems that have the potential to improve the productivity and sustainability of their farm enterprises.

“Growers in the Western District of Victoria are faced with a unique set of agronomic, environmental and seasonal conditions so it is important that they are provided with information and resources that are relevant and of practical use,” Mr Shannon said.

“The Update in Skipton will be a valuable forum for discussing local cropping issues and for delivering advice and support to local growers as they strive to build and improve their farm businesses.”

The line-up of speakers includes experts from throughout Australia as well as local grains industry personnel.

In the wake of a sporadic and weather interrupted harvest last year, farm consultant Phil O’Callaghan of ORM and grower and contractor Scott Blurton will discuss the drivers of harvest efficiency and will analyse the options available to growers to improve their efficiency at harvest time.

On-farm storage aeration and drying options will be outlined by storage expert Peter Botta, of PCB Consulting, while Dr Peter Sale from La Trobe University will summarise local research on the subject of taming hostile subsoils with subsoil manuring and the production benefits to be gained.

Melbourne University’s Dr Michael Nash will provide an overview of current research into slugs and snails and the options available for control of these troublesome crop pests.

With many farmers juggling the balance of livestock and crop intensity, Cam Nicolson from Grain & Graze will present on changing the livestock/cropping balance and the likely impact on long-term business risk. An added dimension on this topic will come from Gippsland farmer and Nuffield scholar Rowan Paulet.

The program will conclude with a panel of local agronomists discussing spring and summer crops as options for water logged paddocks.

Mr Shannon said he encouraged all growers in the region to take time out from their on-farm activities to attend the forum to learn of the latest in grains research and industry developments and for the opportunity to discuss issues of most importance to them.

The Update will be from 9am to 1pm (registration starts at 8.15am) at the Skipton Golf Club in Geelong Road. Growers wishing to attend can now register for the Update online via

More information about the Updates is available by visiting or by phoning 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