NSW grain growers will benefit from the new appointment by the NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) to manage DPI research and development projects as part of the recently announced 10 year $130 million DPI and GRDC Bilateral Agreement.
DPI Group Director, Plant Systems, Dr Alison Bowman welcomed the appointment of Dr Ashley Webb to the role of Manager, NSW Grains R&D Bilateral, based at Tamworth Agricultural Institute, to strengthen the partnership between DPI and GRDC.
“Ashley has been employed by DPI since 2013 as Leader Soils North. He and his team have had a portfolio of projects to increase agricultural productivity and sustainability across multiple sectors with a diverse range of co-investors, including several research and development corporations,” Dr Bowman said.
“Prior to DPI Ashley was employed for 12 years by Forests NSW/Forestry Corporation where he specialised in the research and management of soil and water issues.
“His professional skills and experience will provide strategic leadership to ensure open and impartial advice is provided to the Management and Technical Committees relating to the bilateral projects.”
Dr Bowman said the Bilateral Agreement consists of three major investment areas – winter crop agronomy research, winter crop pathology research, covering cereals, pulses, and oilseeds, and infrastructure, capacity building, and skills development.
“It aims to increase industry productivity and capacity to respond to risks and adapt to change, by providing valuable information for growers to make changes and implement new research outcomes to benefit their farming systems,” Dr Bowman said.
“It also aims to support growers to increase their business profitability through the adoption of improved on farm practices that increase productivity while maintaining or improving the natural resource base.
“The agreement will improve long-term research capacity that is focused on delivering benefits to the Australian grains industry by enhancing collaboration and the integration and co-ordination of research, development, and extension activities.
“The agreement will ensure world class research and development and enable DPI to increase and maintain research capacity, adopt new technologies, and strategically invest in infrastructure.”