Tag Archives: Agricultural

Debate @ the Waite

Come and hear two teams debate the topic: Increasing agricultural production is the only sure way to feed 9 billion people by 2050

Ensuring global food security for future generations is one of the greatest challenges of our time.

Increases in agricultural productivity in the second half of the 20th century did much to alleviate hunger in developing countries. However, the rate of this productivity increase is slowing. Do we need another ‘green revolution’ to feed our growing population? Should the focus of investment be on the sustainable intensification of agriculture? Can we continue to push agricultural productivity further while still meeting expectations that resources will be used more efficiently and without harming the environment?

Australian consumers waste large amounts of food every year, and we are not alone. In addition to consumer wastage, vital foodstuffs are lost on the journey from paddock to plate. Political issues can also prevent the movement of food from places of excess to places of need. Do we already produce enough food to feed our growing population? Should the focus of investment be on reducing waste along food value-chains? Is food security a problem of politics rather than production?

At this exciting and important debate moderated by Dr Paul Willis (Royal Institution of Australia), six experts in two teams will argue for your vote.

Team for the affirmative

  • Prof Rick Roush, Dean, Melbourne School of Land and Environment, University of Melbourne
  • Dr Andrew Jacobs, Research Fellow, Australian Centre for Plant Functional Genomics, University of Adelaide
  • Prof Roger Leigh, Director, Waite Research Institute, University of Adelaide

Team for the negative

  • John Webster, Chief Executive, Foodbank Australia Ltd.
  • Dr Wendy Umberger, Lecturer in Agricultural Economics, University of Adelaide
  • Andrew Stoler, Executive Director, Institute for International Trade, University of Adelaide

Will you be for or against?

When: Thursday 25th August, 6.00 pm – 8.30 pm
Where: Lirra Lirra Cafe, Waite Campus, The University of Adelaide, Waite Rd, Urrbrae

Admission free. Bookings essential

Register online at eventbrite or call 83036729
Download flyer (pdf)

Reframing the food agenda: Setting the scene for Australia

As a global provider of food, Australia’s agricultural producers, food industry, researchers and Governments need to make policy, R&D and investment decisions to ensure our food sectors remain productive, competitive and sustainable into the future. Is food security really the most pressing issue for Australian agricultural policy? Are there other issues facing Australia’s agricultural and food industries that demand greater policy attention?

The Waite Research Institute is sponsoring the Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society(AARES) event “Reframing the food agenda: Setting the scene for Australia” to be held on the 19th of August, 2011 at the Waite Campus in Adelaide. The program features an impressive list of both international and Australian experts.

For more information and registration visit http://foodagenda.eventbrite.com

The program .pdf can also be found at the AARES website.

Primary Industries Standing Committee National RD&E Framework

Grains Implementation Committee 2011

Professor Roger Leigh is a member of the National Grains RD&E Framework Implementation Committee as a representative of the Australian Council of Deans of Agriculture.

The national Primary Industries Standing Committee* (PISC) has initiated an agenda to rationalise the national research, development and extension (RD&E) framework servicing agriculture.  The framework spans 14 primary industry sectors and 7 cross-industry sectors.  The 14 industry sectors are: beef, cotton, dairy, fishing and aquaculture, forests, grains, horticulture, pork, poultry, sheep-meat, sugar, wine, wool and new and emerging industries.  The 7 cross-sector strategies are: animal biosecurity, animal welfare, biofuels and bioenergy, climate change and variability, food and nutrition, plant biosecurity and water use in agriculture. These reviews are overseen by the PISC R&D Subcommittee which has a member from the Australian Council of Deans of Agriculture on it.

The PISC National RD&E framework seeks to consolidate investment in RD&E to achieve:

  1. Agreed strategic directions and priorities for national and sector level primary industries RD&E in Australia that enhance the productivity and sustainability of Australia’s primary industries;
  2. Research capability that will more comprehensively and holistically cover the present and future strategic needs of stakeholders nationally;
  3. Reduced fragmentation of research across the nation so that public research capability will become more integrated, interdependent and specialised, and have larger critical mass;
  4. Improved efficiency and effectiveness of RD&E will be improved and as a consequence returns on investment will improve;
  5. Focussed RD&E investment that will improve the capability of the national system in priority areas and ensure effective and efficient use of resources, including infrastructure;
  6. Enhanced collaboration to retain and build capability in fields strategically important to different jurisdictions and industry sectors;
  7. An intergrated national research capability that  will be a component of a wider innovation agenda, supporting development and extension; and
  8. Research undertaken in one location will be developed and extended nationally for primary industries.

(Source:  National Primary Industries Research, Development and Extension Network Statement of Intent)

The PISC RD&E framework is focussing on achieving National R, Regional D and Local E. To achieve this each of the jurisdictions, CSIRO, and the Universities have been asked identify whether their activities will be Major, Support or Link in various designated research activities in each of the sectoral reviews:

Major:  Will maintain a lead role in providing R&D capability towards national outcomes;

Support:  Will contribute to R&D in partnership but the major role will be taken by another jurisdiction or institution;

 Link:  Will not undertake R&D but will access information and resources from other jurisdictions (E only).

The application of the M,S&L categorisation will result in designated major lead (M) and support (S) jurisdictions and institutions undertaking RD&E with a national and sector perspective; as well as other jurisdictions withdrawing from some RD&E activities and sourcing required RD&E outcomes from M&S designated institutions.

(* The Primary Industries Standing Committee comprises the heads of the national and state government departments associated with primary industries).