AgriFutures - AGenda newsletter - Issue 12

Welcome to AgriFutures AGenda

Innovation has always been at the heart of Australian farming. From unusual crops to futuristic machines and mysterious methods. This newsletter explores how doing things differently has paid off.

Discover the technologies ready to address some of the honey bee industry's biggest challenges and learn about the new approach where young people can afford to buy farms. And if you are looking for other insights and learnings into the people leading the way with doing things differently, head to to secure your ticket to the Asia Pacific's not-to-be-missed agrifood tech event.

We are celebrating all but the status-quo and we hope these stories leave you feeling inspired to try something new.

How to break into the farm market

How do young people from non-farming backgrounds pursue a career on the land? And an even harder challenge, how can the same people eventually buy a farm?

Inaugural AgriFutures Rural Women’s Acceleration Grant recipient, Fiona Taylor is a woman on a mission. She wants young people to feel they have a future on the land. With the average age of Australian farmers currently hitting 61, her scheme is set to attract more young people on the land and keep the ones who are already here.

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Navigate and connect to the innovation ecosystem

It was on a trip to San Francisco when AgriFutures Australia Managing Director John Harvey first grasped the scale of excitement, energy, and investment going to agrifood tech around the world.

After attending the 2018 World Agritech Innovation Summit, it became crystal clear that there was a huge opportunity for Australia to play a role in agrifood technology. Learn how we pivoted to stay connected to what was happening globally and the benefits it has brought to our rural industries and communities.

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Out of the box thinking for bees

Bee populations are in a global decline and technology has become an increasingly critical component to combat this. To help support this approach, we have launched the inaugural Bee Tech Challenge – the first of its kind in Australia. We recently announced our Bee Tech Challenge finalists who will display and pitch their innovations at the Australian Bee Congress. Read more about each of our finalists.

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Winds of change for one small farming community

Imagine if your only weather information came from a location one hour away. This is what the Woorak farming community (1.5 hours from the South Australian border) had to face until 2021 when locals successfully applied for the Producer Technology Uptake Program. The group embarked on a project to trial soil moisture probes and weather stations over a 30km radius of their local hall. Data gained from the trial has been life changing.

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Building an agtech business through the eyes of an AgriFutures Horizon Scholar

It was during an AgriFutures Horizon Scholarship Program industry placement where Bill Hyem had the opportunity to work alongside the Founders of Ceres Tag, a direct to satellite animal monitoring information platform. Here he learnt the workings behind a leading and innovative start-up agtech business.

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Maturing vine of innovation: new viticulture technology app

“This app will be able to define what nutritional deficiency exists in the vine through detecting very distinctive patterns on the leaves that indicate an issue” - Dr Paul Smith, Senior Research, Development & Adoption Manager, Wine Australia.

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Keeping up with one of the fastest growing industries in agriculture

“I love the ways that drones can be used in horticulture. Technology is vital in making sure growers can get their produce into consumers' hands quicker and at a higher quality” - Lilly Rehbein, AgriFutures Australia Horizon Scholar.

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Tickets on sale: AgriFutures Rural Women’s Award Gala Dinner

“We understand the crucial role we play to support emerging female leaders so they can turn projects and businesses into opportunities that benefit rural industries and communities” - Stephen Hannan, National General Manager Agribusiness, Westpac.

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