NOTICE: Hard copies of the Australian New Crops Newsletter are available from the publisher, Dr Rob Fletcher. Details of availability are included in theAdvice on Publications Available.
Contribution from David Stacey, the Farming Diversification Officer, Jamestown District Council, Jamestown, South Australia.
It is often presumed that all new crop research and development in Australia is undertaken either by Government organisations or private companies. However, at Jamestown in South Australia the District Council recently appointed a Farming Diversification Officer to identify new agricultural enterprises for the district.
The Jamestown area is typical of the wheat/sheep zone in south-east Australia and local farmers have experienced financial problems during the past five to ten years as a result of poor commodity prices and high interest rates.
Local farmers saw diversification into new enterprises as one way of increasing farm income and they initiated the Jamestown Agricultural Diversification Project. The Project is being undertaken by the local District Council with funding provided by the Commonwealth Department of Employment, Education and Training (DEET).
Somewhat surprisingly, farmers have sought to diversify into completely new enterprises rather than simply seek alternatives to the traditional winter crops of barley and oats. The main enterprises currently being examined are cut flowers and yabbies, tree crops such as olives and quandongs, and forestry plantings for firewood and timber.
With Government funding to State Departments of Agriculture generally declining throughout Australia other local councils might usefully follow the Jamestown initiative.
Any claims made by authors in the Australian New Crops Newsletter are presented by the Editors in good faith. Readers would be wise to critically examine the circumstances associated with any claims to determine the applicability of such claims to their specific set of circumstances. This material can be reproduced, with the provision that the source and the author (or editors, if applicable) are acknowledged and the use is for information or educational purposes. Contact with the original author is probably wise since the material may require updating or amendment if used in other publications. Material sourced from the Australian New Crops Newsletter cannot be used out of context or for commercial purposes not related to its original purpose in the newsletter
Contact: Dr Rob Fletcher, School of Land and Food, The University of Queensland Gatton College, 4345; Telephone: 07 5460 1311 or 07 5460 1301; Facsimile: 07 5460 1112; International facsimile: 61 7 5460 1112; Email:email@example.com
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originally created by:GK; latest update 6 June 1999 by: RF