Creating a prosperous, sustainable and healthy Northern Australia

Potential for broadacre cropping in the NT – webinar

Potential for broadacre cropping in the NT – webinar
  • Publish date 30 April 2021
  • Type Webinar
  • Broadacre cropping

Summary

Join Matt Hall from the NT Department of Industry, Tourism and Trade as he provides an update on our Potential for broadacre cropping in the Northern Territory project. This webinar was recorded on 31 March, 2021.

 

Projects

Potential for broadacre cropping in the NT

Potential for broadacre cropping in the NT

This project includes co-investment from the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) and the Cotton Research and Development Corporation (CRDC) with funding reported here as combined CRCNA funding. It will collate historical broadacre cropping data, natural resource information and an understanding of market opportunities to support the development of viable broadacre cropping systems in the NT. This will be achieved by project participants who each bring unique expertise to develop crop management strategies which will help to de-risk broadacre agriculture in the Top End. The initial focus of this project will be on dryland  and irrigated systems growing cotton and peanut crops, while maize, sorghum, rice and pulse crops will also be investigated as possible ‘break crop’ options for cotton and peanut producers.  A mixture of on-field and simulation techniques will be used throughout this project. On-farm demonstration crop plots planted on commercial properties will serve two purposes: Additional testing of the crop simulation models Experience for the producer and extension site for promoting agricultural method to local producers. A component of the extension plan for this project will introduce producers to simple methods to establish precision and robustness for on-farm crop trials. The project will work with collaborating farmers to ensure the on-farm demonstration plots are achieving their goal while not impeding commercial farm operations. Additionally, researchers will investigate harvesting wet-season flood flows into off-stream storages and undertaking dry-season cropping as a viable irrigation alternative which could support further agricultural development across the Northern Territory. Researchers will develop a natural resource (soil and climate) database for the NT to further support agronomic decision-making and help identify potential crops, the timing and length of the potential cropping windows, and the impacts of climate and edaphic conditions on yield and quality. These factors ultimately determine the productivity of broadacre cropping systems and thus the potential of diversifying pastoral leases. For those crops which will technically grow based on available resources and environmental conditions, there must also an analysis of their market opportunities to support their successful adoption.

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