Online support for the grazing industry and land managers
Jo Powells, Senior Agriculture Advisor
Despite recent restrictions preventing the running of field days and agricultural workshops there are still plenty of options for land managers and especially graziers to remain up to date and in touch with their industries.
Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) and Sheep Connect recently launched their two part “Back to Business” program. Part one of this program offers a free webinar series for graziers looking to rebuild after recent fires, floods and drought. Topics such as accessing support, personal and business resilience, farm infrastructure, livestock health welfare and biosecurity during the rebuild, managing cashflow and maximising genetics along with many more will be discussed in weekly webinars that run until 9 June 2020.
The second part of the Back to Business program is more direct and provides sheep, goat and cattle producers in fire-affected regions access to up to three free, one-on-one-sessions with a farm business consultant to help get their business back on track.
MLA also hosts other webinar series including the “More Beef from Pastures” and “Productivity and Profitability” for livestock producers. These webinars and their supporting online resources are based on many years of Australian, on-ground research and development by numerous red meat industry partners and researchers.
Dairy Australia hosts a swathe of information for the dairy industry including not only production-based information but industry focussed monthly market outlooks for the dairy sector. The regular hay and grain reports also provide insight into the availability and costs of externally sourced fodder.
AWI and Sheep Connect NSW are also hosting webinars including an online version of their popular workshop “Ramping up Repro” which focusses on ram performance and enterprise productivity. You can access previous events and register for upcoming webinars here.
If you’re interested in learning more about biodiversity in your local community while you’re out getting some exercise, now might be the time to explore the Atlas of Living Australia. The online “atlas” is a huge biodiversity database and if you use the “explore your area” search, you can access to find out what plant and animal species can be found in your local neighbourhood, even down to what species of slug has been recorded!
For those keen on keeping up to date with the latest in soil science, the NSW Department of Primary Industries Soil and Water Unit hold monthly soil webinars and also have a great archive of soil webinar sessions covering topics from soil testing, soil carbon, reading landscapes, drought and soils and many more.
Many of our more locally based farming systems, producer and industry support groups can also be a great source of local agricultural information. Many of these groups have successfully collaborated in on-farm research with their findings, recommendations and current projects available for viewing online. If you’re having trouble finding your local group, contact your nearest Local Land Services Agricultural Advisor who can help you connect with your local industry group.
And finally, if you want to stay up to date with the latest information regarding COVID-19 and its implications for the agricultural industry, the NSW Department of Primary Industries COVID-19 advice page is the place to go.
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