Funding to boost agriculatural research and development

A NEW Australian Government grant will support a national hub of agricultural know-how.

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has invested in a wider community understanding of agricultural research by supporting a team of experienced agricultural communicators.

Regionally based Research for Agriculture is sourcing, curating, sharing and tracking world-leading Australian agricultural and environmental research through print and digital media.

The group’s footprint is national and international with 15,000 initial subscribers, a website, a free weekly e-newsletter, a free quarterly digital publication, social media and plans for an annual printed magazine of the year’s-best research.

The collaboration is supported by a $230,000 grant from ACMA’s Regional and Small Publishers Innovation Fund.

Research for Agriculture is based at Lismore, with linkages across Australia through its partner Agriculture Media - a publishing company with more than 20 years’ experience in the sector.

It is the brainchild of co-founder and entrepreneur John Hancock, former Director of Outreach at the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research.

Recently appointed CEO, Sue Webster is a highly experienced networker and recognised agribusiness leader who has a passion for Research and Development.

“Australia has a long and distinguished heritage of agricultural research,” she said. “Australians invented the world’s first mechanised grain stripper, air seeder, Dethridge irrigation wheel and many shearing technologies. Few people know that an Australian – Bill Mollison – established the global practice of permaculture.”

Ms Webster said the impetus continues into the modern world.

“Advances in IVF have been assisted by Australian livestock research, CSIRO scientists invented the Hendra vaccine and South Australian research saved the world’s tuna stocks by developing the world’s first captive-breeding program.”

“So much good research for agriculture gets buried in low-traffic web pages or dark storerooms,” she said.

“We invite the research community to send us the good oil on what’s happening here and abroad in agriculture. We curate this for various audiences – government, corporate, academic and the layman – and publish it through our website, newsletters, press releases and our magazine.”

“In addition to our media, Research for Agriculture will also run networking events across Australia through the year.”

“I’d encourage everyone with deep interest in agricultural research to get involved.”

Subscribe to the free weekly Research for Agriculture e-newsletter at or visit us at or on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram @Research4Ag. For more information, phone 1300 690 218.

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