The Darling Downs is set to become an epicentre for Queensland grains and cropping research with the announcement of an $11 million investment into a new facility.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources Barnaby Joyce last week announced the $11 million co-investment by the Grains Research Development Corporation (GRDC) and the Queensland Government.
Through an industry trust (Grains and Cropping R&D Trust), a 740 hectare property on the Condamine River, south-west of Toowoomba, has been acquired and is set to become one of Australia’s biggest cropping research stations.
The farming property will be developed into a grains applied research, development and extension (RD&E) facility, which will be operated by the trust on behalf of Australia's grain growers.
Deputy Prime Minister Joyce said the co-investment highlighted Queensland’s and northern NSW’s importance to the national grains industry and the need for ongoing, grass-roots driven RD&E.
- The gross value of production of Queensland’s grains and crops is estimated to be around $4 billion in 2016-17. Apart from sugar and cotton, the major contributors are wheat, chickpeas and sorghum.
- DAF and GRDC have co-invested $11 million ($5.5 million each) into an industry trust which has purchased a Darling Downs farming property that will be developed into a research facility for grains and crops.
- The research facility will be overseen by a trustee, Queensland Crop Research Limited (QCR) Trust on behalf of Australian grain growers.
- The 740ha ‘fit-for-purpose’ property, 'Tosari', is located on the Condamine River, on Yarramalong Road, 70km south-west of Toowoomba.