Software keeps growers on the pulse

A new computer software package supported by growers through the GRDC could speed farmer adoption of advanced pulse production techniques.

The program, developed by researchers at the Western Australian Agriculture Department, can be used on any IBM-compatible computer operating Windows 3.1 or Windows 95.

GRDC Western Region Panel Deputy Chairman, Mike Perry, said the Pulse Pak program was developed to provide farmers with a new interactive method of receiving up-to-date pulse information. "GRDC spends about S7 million on pulse research every year. The program was invented to combine the latest recommendations and research results in an easy-to-use format." Mr Perry said. "Most farmers have farmnotes and factsheets on every topic under the sun, but how many can find the information when they need it?"

The program provides delails on chick peas, faba beans, field peas, lentils, lupins, albus lupins, vetch and lathyrus. Each crop has vital information on its market potential, soil and climate requirements, varieties, nutritional quality, crop production, weeds, diseases, and pests.

Mr Perry said it also includes crop production information relevant to the range of growing conditions across the Western Region, allowing growers to discover exactly how to grow lupins in their particular area.