Scientists lay out plan to future proof Australia’s agricultural sector

June 20, 2017
Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister, Luke Hartsuyker MP launching the Academy’s ten-year strategic plan for Australian Agricultural Sciences.

Australia’s leading agricultural scientists are calling on industry and government to establish a $100 million agricultural translation fund to help boost productivity and profitability, future-proofing Australian farmers against looming shocks like climate variability or major disease outbreaks.

The recommendation is one of five in a ten-year strategic plan for Australian Agricultural Sciences developed by the Australian Academy of Science.

The plan was launched today by the Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister, Luke Hartsuyker MP.

Developed by the Academy’s National Committee for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, the plan recommends a new research translation fund supported by public and private equity to fast-track investment in the development of applications for the most promising Australian research.

The fund would boost Australia’s economy through new and improved agricultural products and services in domestic and international markets.

The Academy’s report has also identified opportunities to improve efficiencies in the sector by streamlining governance arrangements between Commonwealth, state and territory governments, research agencies and universities.

“There remains a distinct lack of coordination of agricultural research and innovation in Australia and a culture of competition over collaboration,” said Dr Jeremy Burdon, Chair of the Academy’s National Committee for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food.

“The scientific and research community must form stronger partnerships across sectors and industries, focusing on better-integrated global data, modelling and analytical capacities, to better respond to new opportunities and prepare for major threats to agricultural production.”

Read the media release.

© 2019 Australian Academy of Science

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