John Hanrahan Scholarship supports agriculture’s next generation

20 March, 2018

Word Count: 551

New scholarship supports agriculture’s next generation

On Friday 2 March, Riverine Plains Inc, hosted an Agribusiness Dinner at Corowa, attended by 165 people. The dinner was held in celebration of the families, communities and businesses involved in agriculture across the region, as well as being the official launch of the John Hanrahan Scholarship.

Riverine Plains Inc Treasurer and Scholarship Fund Trustee, Mr Barry Membrey, said that the Scholarship is named in honour of John Hanrahan, a successful and experienced farmer and respected community member from Coreen, who passed away unexpectedly in 2014.

“John was a great friend and supporter of Riverine Plains Inc and he had a real enthusiasm for the types of ongoing research that Riverine Plains Inc is involved with”, said Barry.

“Through a generous donation made by the Hanrahan family, Riverine Plains Inc has been able to establish a Scholarship in John’s name to honour his passion for farming, his thirst for knowledge and his sense of community”.

The scholarship, awarded annually, will recognise and encourage agricultural excellence in the Riverine Plains region through the support of a local second year student in their agriculture/agribusiness bachelor or diploma degree studies.

Applications for the John Hanrahan Scholarship will open on 1 July and close on 31 August, with details available in the coming months from www.riverineplains.org.au.

“We are aiming to raise additional funds so the Scholarship can continue in perpetuity, and invite members, sponsors and friends of Riverine Plains Inc, and the wider community, to consider making a donation to the Scholarship Fund so that this vision can be realised” added Barry.

The evening also featured Ms Alexandra Gartmann, Managing Director and CEO of Rural Bank, who spoke about her own leadership journey as well as Rural Bank’s Scholarship Program, which has been supporting students since 1992.

Ms Gartmann described how scholarships can open doors for an exciting and diverse agricultural career and commended Riverine Plains Inc and the Hanrahan Family on the establishment of the John Hanrahan Scholarship.

The evening also included an impressive food and wine display, which showcased the diverse and wonderful range of agricultural produce originating from north east Victoria and southern NSW.  Produce featured in the display was donated by a number of local businesses, before being sold in hampers and raising over $3500 for the Scholarship Fund.

Riverine Plains Inc sincerely thank the following businesses for their generous donations: Junee Abattoirs, Rennylea Angus, Murray Valley Pork, Uncle Toby’s, Rich Glen Olive Estate, Cofield Winery, Rutherglen Estate Winery, Willowbank, Holbrook Paddock Eggs, RMB Stillard Nominees (Tomatoes), Winemakers of Rutherglen, Mt Pilot Estate, Jones Winery & Vineyard, Murray Estate Wines, Billabong Produce, Katamatite Garlic, Riverina Dairy, Lupins for Life, Lambtastic, Greta Vale Orchard, Malt Shed Brewery, Murray River Produce, Riverina Oilseeds & Bioenergy, AWB (Canola Oil), John Doyle Potatoes, Ross Tomatoes and The Wicked Virgin.

The John Hanrahan Scholarship Fund has been recognised by the Australian Taxation Office to provide Deductible Gift Recipient status.  For information on how to make a donation to the Scholarship Fund please contact the Riverine Plains Inc office on 03 5744 1713 or email info@riverineplains.org.au.

Riverine Plains Inc is an independent farming systems group specialising in farmer driven research and extension across north-east Victoria and southern New South Wales. For more information, or to become a member, please visit www.riverineplains.org.au.

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More Information or Interview:

Fiona Hart, Executive Officer, Riverine Plains Inc on 03 5744 1713.

Pulse Check (Lentil & Chickpea) Discussion Group Meeting – 7 March, Dookie

19 February, 2018

Word Count: 412

Lentil and Chickpea Marketing and Pre-Sowing Meeting

Farming systems group Riverine Plains Inc will host a pre-sowing Pulse Check Discussion Group meeting at Dookie on Wednesday 7 March. The meeting will provide an opportunity for local growers and advisors interested in lentil and chickpea production to discuss practical aspects of production and marketing.

Riverine Plains Inc Pulse Check Facilitator, Michelle Pardy, explained that local interest in lentils and chickpeas had been growing as growers looked for more reliable pulse options, with favourable pricing contributing to the rising interest.

“A number of growers in southern NSW and north-east Victoria grew chickpeas or lentils for the first time in 2018, with harvest results being largely positive despite the impact of frost, the dry September and harvest rains” said Michelle.

“With more growers curious about these crop types, and with sowing not too far away, this pre-sowing meeting aims to help growers with some of their lentil or chickpea marketing and planning decisions” she said.

“Of particular interest will be the implications of the recent 30% import tariff imposed by India, so we have arranged for experienced pulse agronomist and Pulse Australia Southern Region Industry Development Manager, Phil Bowden, to discuss this and other aspects of pricing and marketing” said Michelle.

Phil will also be involved in other discussions around paddock and variety selection, herbicide options, inoculant use and early nutrition. Growers can also bring in samples of graded seed from 2017 so that individual seeding rates can be calculated for 2018.

The pre-sowing Pulse Check Discussion Group Meeting will be held on Wednesday 7 March, 2018 at the Gladstone Hotel, Dookie, from 1pm – approx. 3pm. Current and prospective lentil and chickpea growers and advisors are welcome, with new growers especially invited to attend.

Light refreshments provided: RSVP for catering purposes to Riverine Plains Inc Pulse Check Group Facilitator, Michelle Pardy, on 03 5744 1713 or michelle@riverineplains.org.au.

For further information visit www.riverineplains.org.au.

The Riverine Plains Inc Pulse Check Discussion group has been established as part of GRDC’s Southern Pulse Extension Project. The Southern Pulse Extension project is being delivered by a consortium of organisations involved in the pulse industry across GRDC’s Southern region and provides a collaborative opportunity to increase the knowledge of growers and advisers on sustainable pulse production. 

Riverine Plains Inc is an independent farming systems group specialising in farmer driven research and extension across north-east Victoria and southern New South Wales. For more information, or to become a member, please visit www.riverineplains.org.au.

 

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More Information or Interview:

Michelle Pardy, Riverine Plains Inc Pulse Check Facilitator on 03 5744 1713 or 0428 734 795.

Rand Soil Pit Day – Thursday 8 February

1 February, 2018

Word Count: 303

SOIL PIT DISCUSSIONS AT RAND

Riverine Plains Inc will hold an informal soil pit discussion for farmers at Rand on Thursday 8 February, 2018.

Riverine Plains Inc Research and Extension Officer, Dr Cassandra Schefe, says that the soil pit session gives local farmers the opportunity to learn more about their local soil type and how this can affect moisture and nutrient movement across the growing season.

“The soil pit is located next to the on-farm weather station and soil moisture probe at Rand, which was installed through a project supported by Murray Local Land Services and funded through the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program”

“By looking at the soil pit in conjunction with soil chemistry results, local weather station and soil moisture probe data, we can devlop a better understanding of where soil water and nutrients, such as nitrogen, went last season. This in turn can then provide us with useful information when planning fertiliser programs for the coming season” said Cassandra.

The Rand soil pit session will run from 10am – 1pm. The soil pit site is located at Roy Hamilton’s property “Bogandillan”, Rand (directions can be downloaded with the event flyer at riverineplains.org.au/events/ ). Signage and light refreshments will be provided on the day. No RSVP is necessary.

This free event is being held as part of the Linking nutrient movement to soil moisture at weather stations in the Murray Region project.

Information from the Rand weather stations and soil moisture probes, along with the entire Riverine Plains Inc weather station network, is available for free public access via the weather page at riverineplains.org.au.

Riverine Plains Inc is an independent farming systems group specialising in farmer driven research and extension across north-east Victoria and southern New South Wales. For more information about this event, or to become a member, please visit www.riverineplains.org.au.

….ends………………

More Information or Interview:

Cassandra Schefe, Extension Officer, Riverine Plains (03 5744 1713 / 0419 238 798)

 

Soil Pit Discussions, Bungeet & Miepoll – 6 February

29 January, 2018

Word Count: 383

SOIL PITS DISCUSSIONS AT MIEPOLL, BUNGEET

Riverine Plains Inc will hold informal soil pit discussions for farmers at Bungeet and Miepoll on Tuesday 6 February, 2018.

Riverine Plains Inc Research and Extension Officer, Dr Cassandra Schefe, explained that the soil pit sessions provide an opportunity for local farmers to learn more about their local soil characteristics and how this relates to moisture and nutrient movement through the growing season.

“In 2017, Riverine Plains Inc installed on-farm weather stations with soil moisture probes at Bungeet and Miepoll, through a project funded through the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program. The soil pits we will be looking at have been established next to these weather station sites, and will provide extra data and context for the day” she said.

“By looking at the soils pits, the 2017 soil test results, as well as the local weather and soil moisture probe data, we can a put together a story about soil water movement and where nutrients, such as nitrogen, went last season. This in turn can also provide us with useful planning information for the 2018 season” she added.

The first session begins at 10am at Bungeet, with the soil pit site located to the north of 320 Devenish-Wangaratta Road, Bungeet West. The second session commences at 2pm at Carters Rd, Miepoll, with the soil pit located between Arcadia Two Chain Road and the Euroa-Shepparton Rd. Signage will be provided on the day.

All are welcome to attend these free events.

This event is being held as part of the Improving fertiliser and chemical use through local real time weather and soil information for farmers of the productive plains project. The project is supported by the Goulburn Broken CMA through the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program.

To register, or for more information, please contact Cassandra Schefe at Riverine Plains on 03 5744 1713, email cassandra@riverineplains.org.au, or visit riverineplains.org.au.

Information from the Bungeet and Miepoll weather stations and soil moisture probes, along with the entire Riverine Plains Inc weather station network, is available for free public access via the weather page at riverineplains.org.au.

Riverine Plains Inc is an independent farming systems group specialising in farmer driven research and extension across north-east Victoria and southern New South Wales. For more information, or to become a member, please visit www.riverineplains.org.au

 

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More Information or Interview:

Cassandra Schefe, Extension Officer, Riverine Plains (03 5744 1713 / 0419 238 798)

 

Sykesy’s Buraja Meeting – 1st February

19 January, 2018

Word Count: 410

SYKESY’S BURAJA MEETING

Riverine Plains Inc will host Sykesy’s Buraja Meeting on Thursday February 1, 2018. The meeting is an opportunity for local farmers to discuss the harvest that was, lessons learnt from 2017 and the challenges likely to arise in the season ahead.  This event continues the tradition started by the late John Sykes and is named in his honour.

Riverine Plains Inc Executive Officer, Fiona Hart says that this long-standing event is important for the grain growing community, because it provides a forum to discuss last year’s experiences, which in-turn helps in planning for the coming season.

“The 2017 growing season was highly variable, with dry conditions, frost and weather damage affecting growers differently across the region. This has created a range of management scenarios leading into 2018, which we aim to discuss on the day” said Fiona.

The day will start with a post-harvest debrief session, facilitated by Chris Minehan from Rural Management Strategies.  Chris will also address key aspects of preparing for the year ahead.

Using results from the local National Variety Trials (NVT) and the Riverine Research Centre at Yarrawonga, Nick Poole from FAR Australia will speak on regional wheat variety performance and options for planting in autumn 2018.  David Burch from NSW DPI will speak on barley varieties, while Phil Bowden from Pulse Australia will address pulse prospects for 2018. Canola varieties and grain marketing will also be discussed.

Sykesy’s Buraja Meeting will be held on Thursday 1st February, 2018 at the Buraja Recreational Ground Hall, commencing at 9am sharp until 12:30pm. All are welcome to this free event and a BBQ lunch will be provided afterwards.  No RSVP is necessary.

A GRDC Southern NSW Regional Cropping Solutions Network (RCSN) Meeting will follow lunch (start time approximately 1:15pm), facilitated by GRDC RCSN Southern NSW Coordinator and Rural Management Strategies consultant Chris Minehan.This Open Forum is a chance for anyone involved in the grains industry to raise issues, constraints and opportunities relevant to the local industry. It is also an opportunity to hear about investments and activities the GRDC is making to improve profitability for growers in southern NSW.

For more information please contact Fiona Hart at info@riverineplains.org.au or phone (03) 5744 1713 or visit the website at riverineplains.org.au.

Riverine Plains Inc is an independent farming systems group specialising in farmer driven research and extension across north-east Victoria and southern New South Wales. For more information, or to become a member, please visit www.riverineplains.org.au

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More Information or Interview:

Fiona Hart, Executive Officer, Riverine Plains (03 5744 1713)

 

New On-farm Weather Stations at Miepoll & Bungeet

28 November, 2017

Word Count: 393

Farmers in the Riverine Plains region now have free access to two additional weather stations and moisture probes, installed at Bungeet and Miepoll, as part of a project facilitated by local farming systems group, Riverine Plains Inc.

Riverine Plains Inc Research and Extension Officer, Dr Cassandra Schefe, explained that access to real-time weather information was important to help farmers manage their spray and fertiliser applications, harvest fire risk and also their response to damaging environmental events such as frost.

“Weather patterns, topography and soil types all vary across a region and while there are official BOM weather stations located at Shepparton, Yarrawonga, Wangaratta and Benalla, these may not reflect conditions at individual locations across the Goulburn Broken catchment” she said.

“Local weather stations, such as those recently installed at Bungeet and Miepoll, can act to fill the void across the region and work to help farmers save time when making decisions” she added.

The on-farm weather stations continuously record air temperature, rainfall, humidity, wind speed and direction: this data is then used to calculate Delta T for spraying, fire safety during grain harvest, as well as frost risk. Soil moisture probes installed at varying depth increments at the sites also provide information to help farmers monitor crop water use and fertiliser application.

The new weather stations at Bungeet and Miepoll complement Riverine Plains Inc’s existing weather stations located at Barooga, Berrigan, Culcairn, Henty, Howlong Lockhart, Pleasant Hills, Rand, Redlands, Dookie, Rutherglen Telford, Yabba and Yarrawonga.

Information from the Goulburn Broken CMA funded Bungeet and Miepoll weather stations, and the entire Riverine Plains Inc weather station network, is available for free public access via the weather page at riverineplains.org.au. Simply select the nearest location then save to your smartphone, tablet or computer.

The Miepoll and Bungeet weather stations were installed through the Improving fertiliser and chemical use through local real time weather and soil information for farmers of the productive plains project. The project was funded by Goulburn Broken CMA through the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program.

For more information please contact Riverine Plains on (03) 5744 1713 or visit riverineplains.org.au.

Riverine Plains Inc is an independent farming systems group specialising in farmer driven research and extension across north-east Victoria and southern New South Wales. For more information, or to become a member, please visit www.riverineplains.org.au

….ends………………

More Information or Interview:

Cassandra Schefe, Extension Officer, Riverine Plains (03 5744 1713 / 0419 238 798)

 

New Weather stations at Bungeet and Miepoll

28 November, 2017

Word Count: 393

NEW ON-FARM WEATHER STATIONS FOR BUNGEET AND MIEPOLL

Farmers in the Riverine Plains region now have free access to two additional weather stations and moisture probes, installed at Bungeet and Miepoll, as part of a project facilitated by local faRming systems group, Riverine Plains Inc.

Riverine Plains Inc Research and Extension Officer, Dr Cassandra Schefe, explained that access to real-time weather information was important to help farmers manage their spray and fertiliser applications, harvest fire risk and also their response to damaging environmental events such as frost.

“Weather patterns, topography and soil types all vary across a region and while there are official BOM weather stations located at Shepparton, Yarrawonga, Wangaratta and Benalla, these may not reflect conditions at individual locations across the Goulburn Broken catchment” she said.

“Local weather stations, such as those recently installed at Bungeet and Miepoll, can act to fill the void across the region and work to help farmers save time when making decisions” she added.

The on-farm weather stations continuously record air temperature, rainfall, humidity, wind speed and direction: this data is then used to calculate Delta T for spraying, fire safety during grain harvest, as well as frost risk. Soil moisture probes installed at varying depth increments at the sites also provide information to help farmers monitor crop water use and fertiliser application.

The new weather stations at Bungeet and Miepoll complement Riverine Plains Inc’s existing weather stations located at Barooga, Berrigan, Culcairn, Henty, Howlong Lockhart, Pleasant Hills, Rand, Redlands, Dookie, Rutherglen Telford, Yabba and Yarrawonga.

Information from the Goulburn Broken CMA funded Bungeet and Miepoll weather stations, and the entire Riverine Plains Inc weather station network, is available for free public access via the weather page at riverineplains.org.au. Simply select the nearest location then save to your smartphone, tablet or computer.

The Miepoll and Bungeet weather stations were installed through the Improving fertiliser and chemical use through local real time weather and soil information for farmers of the productive plains project. The project was funded by Goulburn Broken CMA through the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program.

For more information please contact Riverine Plains on (03) 5744 1713 or visit riverineplains.org.au.

Riverine Plains Inc is an independent farming systems group specialising in farmer driven research and extension across north-east Victoria and southern New South Wales. For more information, or to become a member, please visit www.riverineplains.org.au

….ends………………

More Information or Interview:

Cassandra Schefe, Extension Officer, Riverine Plains (03 5744 1713 / 0419 238 798)

The ‘Evan Moll’ Gerogery Field Day

17 October 2017

Word Count: 337

The Gerogery National Variety Trial (NVT) and Agronomy Field Day has been a fixture on the southern NSW cropping events calendar for many years. Riverine Plains Inc is pleased to continue the tradition by hosting this year’s ‘Evan Moll Gerogery Field Day’, on Thursday 2nd November, 2017.

“The day is an important event for growers in the region, with one of the key features being the inspection of the cereal and canola varieties included in the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) National Variety Trials (NVT)” said Riverine Plains Inc Extension Officer, Dr Cassandra Schefe.

“The NVT trials provide an excellent opportunity to assess new varieties prior to their commercial release. Don McCaffery (NSW DPI) will discuss the characteristics of the different canola varieties in the NVT trials, while Kurt Lindbeck (NSW DPI) will discuss canola disease control” she said.

“The cereal discussions will be led by Peter Matthews and Felicity Harris (NSW DPI), with Peter leading growers through the NVT trials, while Felicity will be speaking on flowering dates in different varieties” she said.

Other speakers include David Leah (Seed Force) who will speak on pasture varieties and John Piltz (NSW DPI), who will address pasture digestibility issues. Adrian Clancy (AC Ag Commodities) will also deliver a lunchtime presentation on grain marketing.

The field day also provides an opportunity to discuss the issues that are developing in the lead-up to harvest.

The field day will commence at 11am on Thursday, 2nd November at “Elderslie”, Fielder-Moll Road Gerogery. A free BBQ lunch will be provided by Seed Force.

This field day is supported by Murray Local Land Services (LLS) through funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Programme.

For more information please contact Cassie at cassandra@riverineplains.org.au , (03) 5744 1713 / 0419 238 798 or download Gerogery Field Day Flyer 2017.

Riverine Plains Inc is an independent farming systems group specialising in farmer driven research and extension across north-east Victoria and southern New South Wales. For more information, or to become a member, please visit www.riverineplains.org.au

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More Information or Interview:

Cassandra Schefe, Extension Officer, Riverine Plains (03 5744 1713)

RPI AGM: Office Bearers Unchanged, updated committee list

Riverine Plains 2017 Annual General Meeting

 The Riverine Plains Inc Annual General Meeting was held at the group’s Mulwala office on Monday 9 October 2017.

The majority of committee members were re-elected with the exception of retiring committee members Clare Robinson and Jo Slattery.  Daniel Moll was newly elected to the Committee.

The following office bearers were elected.

Chair: Ian Trevethan, Howlong

Deputy Chair: Adrian Clancy, Splitters Creek

Treasurer: Barry Membrey, Wodonga

Research Subcommittee Chair:  Peter Campbell, Henty

Extensions Subcommittee Chair: Adrian Clancy, Splitters Creek

Public Officer: John Bruce

 

Committee:

Lisa Castleman, Wagga Wagga

Paul Gontier, Shepparton

Adam Inchbold, Yarrawonga

Fiona Marshall, Mulwala

Daniel Moll, Gerogery

Eric Nankivell, Albury

Andrew Russell, Browns Plains

Curt Severin, Brocklesby

Bradley Stillard, Barooga

 

Executive Support will continue to be provided by Dale Grey, Agriculture Victoria.

 

 

New Discussion Group to focus on Lentil and Chickpea Production

5 October, 2017

Word Count: 417

New Discussion Group to focus on Lentil and Chickpea Production

Local farming systems group Riverine Plains Inc will host it‘s first Pulse Check Discussion Group meeting, focusing on lentil and chickpea production, at Dookie from 9:30 am on Thursday 19 October.

Michelle Pardy, Riverine Plains Inc‘s Pulse Check Facilitator says the discussion group brings together local growers, advisors and experts, with the aim of assisting growers manage the practical aspects of lentil and chickpea production and marketing.

“To date, lentils and chickpeas have been grown across a fairly limited area of southern NSW and north-east Victoria, though their potential has led to significant interest from grain growers wanting to be involved in high value pulse crop production” noted Michelle.

“As part of GRDC’s Southern Pulse Extension Project, Riverine Plains Inc has established a Pulse Check Discussion Group to address this interest.  Participants in the group can learn about whether these crops are suitable for their systems, help manage their production and marketing issues and increase pulse productivity and profitability.  The group will be especially beneficial to growers with limited lentil and chickpea production experience”.

The first Pulse Check paddock walk and discussion is being timed to address pre-harvest and harvesting issues. Topics include crop topping, header set-up, managing header fire risks, as well as harvest logistics, retaining seed, storage, marketing and paddock selection for next year.

“While this first meeting is primarily focused on harvest issues, we will be running 3-4 meetings per year across north-east Victoria and southern NSW for the next few years as part of the ongoing larger project, covering a wide variety of topics such as sowing, varieties, paddock selection and disease management” said Michelle.

The Pre-Harvest Pulse Check Paddock Walk and discussion will be held at the Ludeman Brothers property, 334 Ludeman Road, Waggarandall (Dookie) from 9:30am – 12:00 pm on Thursday 19 October, 2017.

To register for Riverine Plains Inc’s Pulse Check Discussion Group for North east Victoria/Southern NSW, please contact Michelle Pardy, Riverine Plains Inc Pulse Check Group Facilitator,  on 03 5744 1713 or email michelle@riverineplains.org.au.

The Southern Pulse Extension project is being delivered by a consortium of organisations involved in the pulse industry across GRDC’s Southern region and provides a collaborative opportunity to increase the knowledge of growers and advisers on sustainable pulse production. 

Riverine Plains Inc is an independent farming systems group specialising in farmer driven research and extension across north-east Victoria and southern New South Wales. For more information, or to become a member, please visit www.riverineplains.org.au.

 ….ends………………

More Information or Interview:

Michelle Pardy, Riverine Plains Inc Pulse Check Facilitator on 03 5744 1713 or 0428 734 795.