Andrew taking the lead in grains industry research
Author: Sharon Watt | Date: 22 Feb 2018
A research scientist who is making an impact in the area of new crop varieties and best practice agronomy has been recognised as one of the grains industry’s most influential young leaders.
Andrew Ware, from the South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI), a division of Primary Industries and Regions SA (PIRSA), has been presented with the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) Southern Region 2018 Emerging Leader Award.
The annual award – voted upon by the GRDC Southern Regional Panel – acknowledges, encourages and rewards young emerging leaders of the grains industry in South Australia, Victoria and Tasmania.
Mr Ware, who is based at Port Lincoln on Eyre Peninsula, leads the New Variety Agronomy group for SARDI and plays an important role in a number of regional, State and national research initiatives.
GRDC Southern Regional Panel deputy chair Dr Mike McLaughlin said Mr Ware was fast becoming a respected agronomic authority, not only in SA but beyond.
“Andrew has an innate understanding of cropping systems, environmental and other agronomic constraints and how to get the most out of the varieties available to growers,” Mr McLaughlin said.
“He has already established an enviable reputation, not only for his agronomic knowledge and research skills, but also for his work ethic, enthusiasm and commitment to supporting grain growers as they strive to improve their farming systems.”
Mr Ware started his career with SARDI at the Minnipa Agriculture Centre in 1994, and then spent time at CSIRO Land and Water in Adelaide. This was followed by 10 years away from research, managing the family farm on Lower EP, before returning to SARDI in late 2009.
He recently assumed leadership of SARDI’s NVA group which conducts field trials at a number of locations to evaluate a range of new material from field crop breeding programs, including the GRDC’s National Variety Trials program. The group also conducts field trials aimed at developing agronomic packages to improve crop production.
Mr Ware is currently involved in a number of major GRDC research, development and extension (RD&E) investments, including the national Optimised Canola Profitability Project which is focused on understanding the relationship between physiology and tactical agronomy management to provide growers with a better understanding of the drivers behind canola’s development, to help improve management of the crop and variety selection.
The National Canola Pathology Program is another key GRDC undertaking to which Mr Ware contributes. This project aims to increase stable production and yields of canola in Australia, through the minimisation of blackleg, sclerotinia and other diseases.
He also works with farming systems groups which, through GRDC research investments, are looking at reducing the limitations to farming in retained stubble systems.
Mr Ware has authored and co-authored a number of industry publications – he is responsible for compilation of the annual SA Crop Variety Sowing Guide which is a highly regarded publication – and is a committee member of Lower Eyre Agricultural Development Association and an ex-officio member of Eyre Peninsula Agricultural Research Foundation board.
Dr McLaughlin said the Emerging Leader Award was a financial scholarship and could be used for travel or another agreed activity to further the skills or expertise of the recipient.
“The award is designed to encourage the emerging leader to establish linkages that leverage international knowledge and opportunities to assist the Australian grains industry to address gaps in research and skills.
“The award fosters networking opportunities and the development of linkages with leading researchers from around the globe – this will help Andrew in his efforts to identify new paths to profitability for our grain growers,” Dr McLaughlin said.
Mike McLaughlin, GRDC Southern Panel
Sharon Watt, Porter Novelli
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