Variable Rate Technology: Maximising Returns for Western Australian Grain Producers

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Variable Rate Technology – is it for me?

This book serves as an overview of how some progressive farmers in Western Australia are working with rapidly changing technology in their farming systems.

Precision Agriculture (PA), using Variable Rate Technology (VRT) is seen by some as an obvious and on-going gradual progression in refining their farm management program. But others are either daunted by the new technology, or can’t see the benefits outweighing the cost of purchasing new machinery.

VRT involves developing a management strategy to target inputs rather than applying them as a blanket rate at paddock scale. It can be used throughout the year from pre-sowing; sowing and in-crop application to maximise profit and efficiency by varying inputs as required.

The required technology and machinery is easier to use and more affordable than ever before, but many growers are still sitting on the fence when it comes to adopting PA. Their usual causes for reticence include: the expense in getting new machinery, paying for expertise support, difficulty in understanding the technology, access to technical support, and the amount of time needed to learn and implement the technology.

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GRDC Project Code SEP00016-A

Region West