Drought hubs to offer help for regions

Drought hubs to offer help for regions

South Australia will host one of eight hubs, funded by the Federal Government, which will be designed to help farmers, communities, businesses and researchers cope with drought.

The adoption and innovation hubs will be located in rural areas across the nation and will be tailored to suit the specific agricultural needs of that region.

Federal Member for Barker, Tony Pasin, said the hub would provide the state with the means to better deal with drought through good practice, tools and technology.

The hubs will also break down silos and provide a physical location where researchers and the community can come together to develop ideas that build drought resilience," he said.

The result will see a range of enduring institutions that cement partnerships among key organisations.

These hubs will provide a direct link for research providers such as the RDCs to primary producers, by providing a way for farmers to co-design innovative solutions that deliver real impact on-farm and along the supply chain."

Through the program there will also be $11 million in funding for Drought Resilience Innovation Grants to support drought resilience initiatives for farmers, community groups, industry, and researchers.

Processes to appoint the hubs and a regional university to lead delivery of the program is expected to open in October.

Mr Pasin said the government would also develop a Digital Foundations for Agriculture Strategy to help agriculture, forestry and fisheries industries access and use digital technology to drive growth.

We know that digital technologies and agtech will drive the next wave of growth for the sector," he said.

In fact, the Australian Farm Institute estimates full adoption of digital tools by the agriculture sector could boost productivity by around $20.3 billion each year."

For information on the Future Drought Fund visit www.agriculture.gov.au/fdf and for the agricultural innovation agenda visit www.agriculture.gov.au/ag-farm-food/innovation/national-ag-innovation-agenda