The Australian Cool Farm Initiative: reducing greenhouse gas emissions

Date: 4 October, 2018

Word Count: 354

The Australian Cool Farm Initiative: reducing greenhouse gas emissions while driving efficiencies

NSW and Victorian grain farmers interested in monitoring or reducing their greenhouse gas emissions are invited to take part in the Australian Cool Farm Initiative being delivered by Riverine Plains Inc and Central West Farming Systems, through a partnership with the USA-based Sustainable Food Laboratory.

Riverine Plains Inc Research Officer, Dr Cassandra Schefe explained that the Australian Cool Farm Initiative is supported by global food company Mars Incorporated, as part of an effort to reduce the environmental impacts of their business. In Australia, Mars Petcare is a significant purchaser of grain from southern NSW and north east Victoria.

“Grain growers produce greenhouse gas emissions in a number of ways and the Australian Cool Farm Initiative provides an avenue for growers to monitor and manage their emissions, while also exploring how different farm practices can provide long-term carbon benefits” said Cassandra.

“The Initiative can also help growers identify inefficiencies and production constraints within their systems, which has the potential to lead to significant input cost savings and production gains” added Cassandra.

Farmers who participate in the program will receive support in the use of the Cool Farm Tool greenhouse gas calculator as well as soil sampling of up to five wheat paddocks annually. Farmers will also receive technical support and information on management options for the key limiting factors in their farming systems.

The Cool Farm Tool has been tested and adopted by a range of multinational companies including Nestle, McDonalds and Unilever through their membership of the Cool Farm Alliance. The Cool Farm Alliance works with their suppliers to measure, manage, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the effort to address global climate change.

Farmers are encouraged to contact Riverine Plains Inc or Central West Farming Systems to learn more about the program.

For more information, please contact Cassandra Schefe, Riverine Plains Inc 0419 238 798; cassandra@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, Research Officer, Riverine Plains (03 5744 1713 or 0419 238 798)

Photo Caption: Juliette Caulkins, Global Sustainable Sourcing Director, Mars Petcare, speaking about the Australian Cool Farm Initiative at the recent Riverine Research Centre Open Day.