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Grower Group Alliance Newswire
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JULY 2016

Dear <<First Name>> <<Last Name>>

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ACROSS THE GGA DESK


July sees the start of the field events and offers some great opportunities to get out in the paddock and see what research and demonstrations grower groups are involved in for the 2016 season. Scroll down for post seeding field walk dates, and keep an eye out in coming editions of Newswire for all the Spring Field Day dates and locations.

As I reflect on the first six month of 2016, I am pleased at the events and activities the GGA has already delivered to support grower groups and the wider network in WA. Some of these key activities have been regional meetings in Feb/March combined with stakeholder mapping workshops; AICD Governance working in Geraldton; Time Management for Effective Team Leadership workshop; and an array of new resources to support the operational efficiencies of groups. 

Finally, as the GGA expands it network beyond broadacre, we are excited to welcome some new groups to the network that can be seen in GGA news below. 

- Rebecca

GGA NEWS

The 2016 GGA Annual Forum is a not to be missed event! Join us for an exciting program with guest speakers and grower groups presenting on a huge range of topics, specifically focused on creating value through collaboration for success. 

This year’s Annual Forum sees a few changes from recent years such as the new venue, and the introduction of a new format in which tickets are openly available to all those wishing to attend at a cost of $150 per ticket (FREE for GGA grower group members - three tickets per group for staff, committee or grower members).

Also new to the 2016 Annual Forum is the presentation of the inaugural Grower Group Excellence Award. This award will be presented to a Grower Group that has made a significant contribution to the industry and is excelling in achieving their group vision.

The Annual Forum will kick off on Thursday 18 August with a half-day grower group member only workshop to discuss the future strategic direction of the GGA. The full day program will take place on Friday 19 August, concluding with the CBH Group Sundowner. To see the full program click here.

Guest speakers featuring at the Forum will include:
  • Alexandra Gartmann - CEO & Managing Director, Rural Bank
  • Peter Cooke - Director, AgKnowledge
  • Keith Anthonisz - Director New Initiatives, Department of Regional Development
  • Nigel Herring - CEO, AMPS Agribuisness Group (NSW)
As well as breakout and plenary sessions covering topics such as:
  • Funding opportunities and challenges
  • Understanding and measuring impact
  • Collaboration for successful R&D - how to work effectively with partners
  • Extension tools and tricks to effectively engage and influence change 

 
To view the media release for the event click here
To view a range of accommodation options in Scarborough click here.  

For more information visit the GGA website here, or contact the GGA office, T: 6180 5759, E: admin@gga.org.au.

 
 
HAVE YOUR SAY ON THE FUTURE OF THE GGA!

As part of the GGA's strategic planning process, GGA staff will be consulting with grower groups over the coming months in an effort to define the role and direction of the Alliance into the future. The consultation period will conclude with a grower group only session during Day 1 of the GGA Annual Forum on Thursday 18 August.

Grower groups will have received an information pack outlining the new strategic plan direction, which also calls for groups to express their ideas, concerns and suggestions for the GGA going forward. We encourage groups to think seriously about the future direction of the GGA and greatly value your input during the consultation period. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

To discuss the GGA Strategic Plan contact Rebecca Wallis, T: 6180 5759, E: rwallis@gga.org.au
 

WELCOME TO NEW FACES IN THE GROWER GROUP COMMUNITY

Some new faces have been popping up at a number of grower groups over the last month or so. We look forward to getting to know you and wish you all the best in your respective roles.
  • Lance Perry - Mingenew-Irwin Group, Chief Executive Officer
  • Jake McGuire - Stirlings to Coast Farmers, Senior Research Agronomist
  • Kathi McDonald - Stirlings to Coast Farmers, Communications Officer
  • Shae Butler - West Midlands Group, Office Manager
  • Tracy Cook - West Midlands Group, Communications Consultant


NEW GROWER GROUPS WELCOMED INTO THE GGA NETWORK!

We are excited to announce three new grower groups have recently become members of the GGA. We look forward to their involvement and participation in the network going forward. 
GENERAL NEWS
CRITICAL BIOSECURITY MEASURES TO PROTECT FROM RUSSIAN WHEAT APHID 

Western Australian grain growers, consultants and agronomists surveying crops for signs of Russian wheat aphid, which was detected in South Australia and Victoria recently, have been urged to adhere to strict on-farm biosecurity protocols.

Surveillance was critical to demonstrate both the absence and presence of the pest in WA, however it is important for those carrying out surveillance to be extra cautious about their movements to prevent any risk of spreading the pest.

For more information
click here, or contact John van Schagen, T: 9368 3765.
 

POTENTIAL FOR RECORD CROP YIELDS THIS SEASON

Record crop yields could potentially be reached in Western Australia this season, according to the final crop forecast from the Australian Export Grains Innovation Centre (AEGIC). 

Dr David Stephens said overall crop prospects across the Australian grainbelt looked positive for the 2016 season, with WA in particular on track to experience very good yields.

With AEGIC having now ceased crop monitoring and climate forecasting services, Dr Stephens will continue to work in crop and climate forecasting in a private fee-for-service capacity as part of a new venture, Agrometerology Australia.

For more information
click here.
 

GIWA ELECTS NEW CHAIR

Grain Industry Association of WA Inc. last week appointed a new chair, Dr Richard Williams, a grain consultant from GroIQ with more than 25 years’ experience in customer relations, quality management and operations in the grain supply chain. Richard was elected by the GIWA Executive as interim chair to lead GIWA through to its Annual General Meeting on Wednesday 5 October 2016. Richard replaces Mr Sean Powell. 

For more information
click here, or contact Richard Williams, T: 0438 927 868, E: richard@groiq.com
 


 
GRDC PODCASTS

The latest GRDC podcasts are now available from the GRDC website. To listen to Ground Cover Radio, Driving Agronomy podcasts or GRDC Radio Western Updates, click here. Great for those long hours in the tractor!
 


YIELD PROFIT LAUNCHES APP

The Yield Prophet Lite App has been launched by Birchip Cropping Group (BCG). The app is a free tool allowing farmers estimate their potential crop yields based on forecast rainfall probabilities for the rest of the season.

For more information
click here or contact Justine Severin, T: 0488 583 632, E: justine@bcg.org.au.
 


REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY 2016-2025

Regional Development Strategy 2016 - 2025, commissioned by Royalties for Regions, was released in June and aims to provide a common plan to build vibrant regions with stronger economies across the State. The plan outlines the focus and priority areas with example programs and initiatives that will achieve them. 

In addition to the Regional Develop Strategy launch, CEDA has also released a
regional development report that showcases the plans and opportunities for regional WA as drivers of economic and social development. The five overarching recommendations from the report were:
  • Encourage strong leadership in the regions 
  • Agree on each region’s comparative advantages, with a view to developing region-pacific branding
  • Develop a pipeline of large, transformational investment projects that align with State-wide priorities and each region’s comparative advantages
  • Strengthen regional investment decisions by introducing a transparent investment prioritisation framework
  • Create innovation hubs in each region to connect local communities and businesses with government, industry, innovators and financiers.


TRAINING PROGRAM TO LIFT LAMB PRODUCTION

The Lifetime Ewe Management (LTEM) training course is a national training program aimed at increasing the rate of lamb production. Already running successfully in WA, the program has now been updated to focus on local WA pasture conditions and suit the needs of a busy mixed-farming schedule.

For more information
click here, or contact Stephen Tunbridge, M: 0439 512 853, E: stephen.tunbridge@agric.wa.gov.au.
 


AHRI: RETHINKING YOUR COMMUNICATIONS PROGRAM + JOB OPPORTUNITY

AHRI have offered some insights into their successful communications strategy, emphasising that there is more to communication that scientific papers and presentations. Click here to take a behind the scenes look at their approach to communication - why they do the things they do and why they believe research projects deserve their own communications program.

AHRI is also hiring a Communications Officer!  Do you love communications, like the sound of what the team are achieving and are passionate about agriculture, then this could be the job for you. They have an exciting opportunity for a creative and passionate digital communicator who is interested in making a difference in Australian agriculture.

For more information click here, or contact Lisa Mayer, T: 6488 7870, E: lisa.mayer@uwa.edu.au. Applications close Wednesday 13 July.
 
OPPORTUNITIES & EVENTS
POSITION VACANT: CEO, MACKILLOP FARM MANAGEMENT GROUP INC.

The MacKillop Farm Management Group (MFMG), based in the Limestone Coast of SA, is seeking to engage a contractor to undertake the role of Chief Executive Officer.
 
The CEO role will require the successful applicant to deliver a model that ensures overall direction, effectiveness, supervision and accountability to the MFMG members and stakeholders. For further information click here, or email 
kmcelroy@mackillopgroup.com.au.

Applications close Sunday 24 July.


WEEDSMART WEEK COMING TO WA

AHRI are due to host "WA WeedSmart Week" from Monday 8 to Friday 12 August. The week will commence with a full day program at the Royal Perth Yacht Club. On the Tuesday, visiting groups have the opportunity to attend a half day program at Curtin University’s Centre for Crop and Disease Management (CCDM) to hear “The fungi-side story” and thereafter the program will take to the road to visit leading WA growers.  

To find out more and to register for the event click here.


SPAA PRECISION AG EXPO
THREE SPRINGS


The SPAA Precision Agriculture (PA) Expo, a free event held Thursday 28 July in Three Springs, will bring together farmers to learn the practical applications of PA technologies on-farm.

The Expo aims to increase the sustainability and profitability of the farmers by increasing adoption and capacity of PA technologies.

For more information click here, or contact Nicole Dimos, M: 0437 422 000, E: nicole@spaa.com.au.


WACOSS WORKSHOPS TO BOOST BUSINESS SKILLS

The WA Council of Social Service (WACOSS) offer a range of professional development options to inform, consult and build capacity of the wider community to enable them to better respond to the changing demands affecting them in Western Australia. Below are some examples of the topics covered, or click here for their full range of training opportunities and events.
POST SEEDING FIELD WALKS

With the 2016 season well under way, groups are preparing for their Post-Seeding Field Walks during July. Support your local group and get along to an event near you!
PREMIERS AGRICULTURE & AQUACULTURE ENTREPRENEUSHIP PROGRAM

The Premier's Agriculture and Aquaculture Entrepreneurship Program supports entrepreneurship and innovation in agriculture and aquaculture by offering scholarships to regional entrepreneurs in the sector.

This scholarship provides up to $30,000 to develop and pursue an idea through exposure to international best practice and leaders in their field. At the completion of their travel and learning experiences the successful applicant will be expected to share their knowledge and learning with industry.

Applications close midday Friday 5 August. 

For more information click here, or contact Judd Millner, T: (08) 6552 6080, E: science@dpc.wa.gov.au.


RCSN OPEN MEETINGS

A number of RCSN open meetings are coming up in the Geraldton and Esperance Port Zones during July:
  • Coorow - Tuesday 19 July
  • Mingenew - Wednesday 20 July
  • Northampton - Wednesday 20 July
  • Ravensthorpe - Monday 25 July
  • Esperance - Monday 25 July
For further information and to register click here.

MLA PASTURE UPDATES

Pasture Updates, supported by Meat and Livestock Australia and Evergreen Farming, are a one-stop information session for producers and anyone involved in the pastures and livestock sector in WA. The 2016 events will be a mixture of paddock walks and indoor sessions.

Highlight this year will be guest speaker Leon Quilliam, producer from Tasmania, speaking about how he is getting 2000kg liveweight gain on his cattle.
  • Manjimup - Tues 2 August
  • Walkaway - Thursday 4 August 
For more information click here or contact Erin Gorter, T: 0429 833 752, E: events@agvivo.com.au
FUNDING 
COGGO RESEARCH FUNDING 

The Council of Grain Growers Organisations (COGGO) established the COGGO Research Fund to invest in innovative research and development projects across the whole supply chain that can demonstrate a direct benefit to Western Australian grain growers. 

The next round of COGGO Research Funding is now open. For more information contact Ian Longson, E: CoggoResearchFund@giwa.org.au. Applications will close Friday 22 July.

 

ROUND 5 NACC FARM DEMONSTRATION SITE GRANTS

NACC Farm Demonstration Site Grants of up to $25,000 are now available to support the promotion and uptake of sustainable and innovative farm practices and management in the Northern Ag Region.

For more information click here, or contact Kym Jefferies, T: 9938 0124, E: kym.jefferies@nacc.com.au. Applications close Tuesday 5 July.
 

WHEATBELT NRM COMMUNITY SUPPORT GRANTS

A number of $500 grants are currently available to encourage groups to increase the knowledge and skills of the Wheatbelt community by participating in and directly contributing to the management of our natural resources and delivery of ecosystem services.

The grants are available for community event support, event attendance and equipment purchase. For more information click here, or contact Leigh Whisson, T: 9670 3100, E: lwhisson@wheatbeltnrm.org.au 
GROWER GROUP SPOTLIGHT


YUNA COMMUNITY CROP EMERGES AS A NEW KIND OF FUNDRAISING


The Yuna P&C recently undertook a new kind of fundraising - counting canola emergence over 32 trial sites planted on the Yuna Farm Improvement Group (YFIG) community crop. The trial was funded by NEFF and COGGO, and is being run by YFIG. For the majority of the day there were 11 women and three children counting the trials, with more children arriving after school to help out.

Jasmyn Allen of YFIG explained that it is important that their children gain an understanding of how food comes to be on their plates. Lots of questions were asked throughout the day as women from agricultural and non-agricultural backgrounds came together to fundraise for the Yuna P&C. 


To read more click here

To view the full Grower Group Alliance Calendar of Events, please go to the GGA Website

If you found this newsletter helpful, please feel free to send it on to your friends and fellow community groups in your area.

People can subscribe to Newswire or contribute by contacting the editor Rebecca Wallis, E: rwallis@gga.org.au

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