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Archive for December, 2018

$24m boost for irrigated agriculture

12.21.2018, Comments Off on $24m boost for irrigated agriculture, 苏州美甲美睫培训学校, by .

Water Minister Mia Davies (second left), with WA College of Agriculture, Harvey, Years 11 and 12 college councillors Ben Ablett, Australind, Samantha Adams, Australind, college captain Kyle Hickman, Harvey, Megan McSeveney, Rockingham, Jarrad Symes, Cockburn, Jordan Hynes, Waterloo and Stuart Richardson, Pinjarra. Behind them is the college’s ‘Whoosh Factor’, a jet of water from a 2EXPANSION of the Myalup and Collie River irrigated vegetable-growing and dairying areas will head seven water-for-agriculture projects across the State to receive a $24.5 million funding boost.
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Water Minister Mia Davies announced the projects and funding at the WA College of Agriculture, Harvey, on Thursday last week as stage two of the four-year $40m Royalties for Regions-funded Water for Food program launched last year in the Kimberley.

Ms Davies said the aim was to increase WA’s “fresh food and animal protein production” by half by 2025, and to double it by 2050.

“Government would work with the private sector to improve water-use technology, establish new irrigation precincts and expand existing agricultural and pastoral opportunities to tap the emerging markets of South East Asia, China and the Middle East,” Ms Davies said.

“Water for Food is a policy that sets out to de-risk economic opportunities for the private sector to take up.

“Right now WA has just 50,000 hectares under irrigation.

“We have the potential – matching water with arable land – for far more.

“There is only 6000ha in the Waroona, Harvey and Collie River irrigation area, yet the total irrigable land in this district is estimated to be 34,000ha.

“It is imperative that we do everything we can to create opportunity for irrigators to expand.

“Our mandate to do this was reinforced recently with the release of a new report from the Regional Australia Institute.

“It clearly states that diversification of the State’s regions is critical for WA’s economic strength and new opportunities must be pursued.”

In the Myalup Irrigated Agricultural Precinct and the Collie River Irrigation District, a large part of the $5.7m made available by Water for Food would focus on how to make best use of saline water from Wellington Dam, with a number of technical options to be explored.

“We have a 186 gigalitre capacity in Wellington Dam but salinity is limiting growth in the Collie River Irrigation District,” Ms Davies said.

“In preparation for this project and having consulted with key stakeholders in the district, at the end of last year I established the Myalup-Wellington Steering Group to look at how we can deal with salinity issues and independently assess innovative private-sector concepts to improve water quality below the dam wall.

“Part of the funding announced today will support that work.

“I am not prepared to accept the status quo when it comes to Wellington Dam.

“The Myalup-Wellington Steering Group will be heard at the top levels of government by feeding into the Water for Food ministerial steering committee.

“It will be supported by a technical advisory group, with all water treatment proposals, concepts and water delivery models to be independently assessed,” Ms Davies said.

John Shannon, chief executive of VegetablesWA, welcomed Ms Davies’ announcement.

The Myalup area was already a “significant contributor” to the State’s economy and “dominates” national vegetable export earnings, Mr Shannon said.

“For example, 93 per cent of Australia’s carrot exports come from Myalup”, he said.

“The gross value of production in Myalup is currently about $65m and it generates employment for 150 full-time workers and an additional 200 seasonal workers.

“Recent work done by VegetablesWA shows that a significant majority of vegetable growers in Myalup are able and keen to expand their businesses, but water availability is a key impediment to this expansion.

“The work looked at a large range of scenarios and even if an extra 15 to 20 gigalitres were made available, then production value would easily double to well over $120m.”

Myalup vegetable grower Joe Castro of Castro Farms said being able to use Wellington Dam water would take pressure off coastal groundwater resources which he currently used to water crops.

“I’m pumping groundwater which is 1400 (parts per million salt) and from the sound of it, Wellington Dam water is already better at 1100 (ppm salt) and with the head pressure from the dam I wouldn’t have to pump,” Mr Castro said.

He said his farm filled 28 12-metre (40 feet) shipping containers with carrots in November.

“It was our best month yet, we normally average about 200 containers a year,” he said.

Harvey dairy farmer Sam Epiro said he hoped Water for Food-funded research and improvements would reduce the risk of increased soil salinity from irrigation, particularly flood irrigation used by many dairy farmers to water pasture.

Geoff Calder, general manager of Harvey Water – the 707-member co-operative licensed to distribute water from Wellington and five other dams along the Darling escarpment – said he hoped the funding announced by Ms Davies would be supplemented by Federal funding for infrastructure.

“In Harvey Water’s current five-year strategic plan we have adopted the theme that we would be using our access to water to promote regional development,” Mr Calder said.

“The Minister’s funding announcement fits firmly within that theme as there is a lot to be obtained on both a regional and State economy basis by increasing the production of vegetables from the Myalup area,” Mr Calder said.

Water for Food initiatives could also help the area’s beef and dairy producers and processors meet expected increased export demand generated by Free Trade Agreements, he said.

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Swan brothers fly high with Angus

12.21.2018, Comments Off on Swan brothers fly high with Angus, 苏州美甲美睫培训学校, by .

Angus producer Craig Swan at the yard where cattle are weaned on his family’s Narrung property.FORGING strong ties with their customers and suppliers has been the key to success for the Swan brothers at Meningie.
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Craig and Anthony Swan grew up in the town, and went into their family fertiliser business Swan Bros, which was established by their father and grandfather.

But, a decade ago the brothers moved into farming on the Cooke Plains.

Six years ago they sold up and bought 1600 hectares on the Narrung Peninsula.

And, when deciding what farming enterprise to run at Narrung, Angus cattle were the obvious answer.

The property was run almost solely as a sheep enterprise so the Swans undertook a lot of work renovating lucerne pastures, establishing fencing and water points.

“Most of the property consists of lucerne pastures, but we also crop and have 100ha of irrigated lucerne for hay production,” Craig said.

They produce 1500 tonnes of lucerne hay a year.

The brothers also run 500 Angus breeders, bought PTIC, with all progeny sold off at a minimum weight of 450 kilograms.

“We don’t keep any heifers so we purchase cows and we purchase quite a few Wanderribby cows locally,” he said.

All calves are sold over-hooks after being finished.

“They are sold directly to Thomas Foods International – for its Angus Pure brand – and then we purchase the number of cows we want from breeder sales or direct from farmers,” he said.

“The main benefit we see of using this system is building a relationship with our customer and the producers we deal with, we see it as a major advantage.

“We find TFI’s Peter Bond really good to deal with and he’s someone with a huge amount of knowledge.”

The brothers produce silage, which is used when weaning their calves.

“Calves are yard weaned for 10 days,” he said.

“We find it easy to wean using the yards, we contain them and they’re fed quality silage, and they put on significant weight during the weaning period.

“We also find they settle down really well in there.”

Another management tool the Swans use is a tight mating period.

“We mate for eight weeks, so we have a tight group of calves to come through,” he said.

“In the first week of April, the first of the calves are due, and calving happens over the next eight weeks.

“Once we have weaned the calves, the cows go onto stubbles, so we can preserve the quality pastures for the weaners.”

Most of the Swan brothers’ bulls are sourced locally, through the Gunner family’s Coorong Designer Angus Stud.

Other bulls have also been sourced from the Coolana Angus stud at Willalooka.

“With bull selection we choose based on growth and structure,” he said.

“Both studs are very strict on structure and it means a lot for the durability of the animal.

“We find they produce the growth and carcase traits we’re after.”

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Punches thrown after race remark

12.21.2018, Comments Off on Punches thrown after race remark, 苏州美甲美睫培训学校, by .

A Wollongong woman has been sentenced to at least three months’ jail over aracially-motivated attack on another woman on Corrimal Street last New Year’s Eve.
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Amy Grant, 24,grabbed the female by the hair andrepeatedly punched herin the face,causing the victim to fall and hit her head against a metal Telstra boxjust after 9.30pm.

The unprovoked attack began moments after Grant pulled up in a car and askedthe girl and her friends if they were “wogs”.

The victim was treated in hospital for a cut above her right eye.

In court on Tuesday, Magistrate Susan McGowan said the woman’s injuries could have been far worse.

“It’s lucky for the victim that she survived to tell the tale,” Ms McGowan said.

Grant was handed a maximum12-month jail sentence butreleased on bail pending a severityappeal.

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Breeders embrace DNA testing

12.21.2018, Comments Off on Breeders embrace DNA testing, 苏州美甲美睫培训学校, by .

GLENTANNER Angus stud, Mount Gambier, is among the growing number of studs using genotyping to make genetic progress in their herd. Brad Lucas (pictured with daughter Piper and father Allan) says it also gives their commercial clients greater confidence in the bulls they are selecting. DNA testing is giving Angus breeders a real leg up, finding more superior animals at a younger age for a greater number of economically important traits.
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The first version of the High Density 50K test became available to Angus breeders in 2010. It provided molecular value predictions for 13 traits using more than 50,000 DNA markers.

Owners of the test Zoetis have worked on increasing the number of economically important traits.

Later this month Zoetis will release six more to the panel — rump fat, retail beef yield, 600-day weight, gestation length, days to calving and net feed intake (post weaning).

They have also recalibrated the HD50K Angus product using several thousand animals with high-accuracy breeding values supplied by Angus Australia.

Predictions for all existing traits have been updated and have resulted in an increase in accuracy across these traits.

At the same time, the cost of the DNA test from a sample of hair from the animal’s tail has more than halved in the past five years.

Angus Australia has gradually blended these MVPs into its monthly Breedplan evaluation, with about 1500 animals a year being genotyped, predominately sale bulls.

Zoetis technical services manager – genetics Emily Piper said the uptake of the HD50K test had been rising year-on-year, partly because of growing awareness and acceptance of the technology, but also because of economic reasons.

“It is now at a point where commercial herds are recognising the benefit of profiling heifer replacements and identifying elite females for artificial reproductive programs using tools such as the HD50K for Angus,” she said.

She said the greatest value came from testing young animals and getting a sneak peek into their genetic potential.

“This is information you wouldn’t otherwise have until the animal has matured and started to produce progeny of its own that can be measured – years down the track,” she said.

“This is particularly true of the hard-to-measure traits such as female fertility. You can’t measure female fertility on a bull, so you have to wait until he has daughters that are producing progeny of their own to make an assessment of that bull’s potential as a sire of fertile females. Knowing this information from a tail-hair test gives you the opportunity to make informed management and joining decisions much earlier in the animal’s life.”

At an industry level, Ms Piper said it was giving stud and commercial breeders access to information they would never be able to measure themselves, such as net feed intake.

“With the rising cost of feed and inputs to raise and grow-out animals, this has been and will be a trait of utmost importance into the future,” she said.

“But it is extremely expensive and difficult to measure and the industry will depend on research projects such as Angus Australia’s Sire Benchmarking Program to generate the necessary information. Molecular predictions give the rest of the industry – both the stud and commercial sectors – the opportunity to leverage this research in their own herds.”

Angus Australia education, extension and youth manager Andrew Byrne said the HD50K test was giving breeders access to EBVs with increased accuracy on their younger cattle, and an opportunity for small herds to generate EBVs with higher accuracy to what was previously possible.

In April 2011, MVPs were blended in Angus Australia’s Breedplan run for seven of these HD50K traits -birthweight, weaning weight, milk, carcaseweight, eye muscle area, rib fat and marbling.

This was followed by calving ease direct and calving ease daughters in June 2011, with another three traits – scrotal circumference, yearling weight and mature cow weight – added in March 2012.

The additional traits that will join the analysis this month bring the total number of traits to 22.

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Australian Dairy steady despite international market volatility

12.21.2018, Comments Off on Australian Dairy steady despite international market volatility, 苏州美甲美睫培训学校, by .

While most major international dairy markets have seen steep price declines, Australian farm-gate prices have remained steady.Australia’s seasonal milk production is up 2.6 per cent on the same period last year (July-December) to 5.33 billion litres and Dairy Australia (DA) estimates overall milk production for the 2014-15 production season will continue the trend.
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DA predicts milk production could reach 9.3-9.5 billion, up 2pc on 2013/14, in light of predictions for a hotter and drier summer.

DA’s Situation and Outlook Report for February released today also reveals the ongoing volatility in world dairy markets has done little to stem the growing interest of investors in the prospect of profitable long-term returns from Australia’s dairy industry.

“Consolidation in the Australian market has continued with Parmalat buying Longwarry Food Park while plans for a potential large-scale green field investment in the Widebay region of Queensland progress,” said Norman Repacholi, Commercial Research and Analysis Manager, Dairy Australia.

“Favourable international trade deals, such as the China Free Trade Agreement at the end of last year, have added to dairy’s appeal as an attractive investment opportunity,” he said.

While most major international dairy markets have seen steep price declines, Australian farm-gate prices have remained steady and this can partly be explained by the nation’s processors who are eager to maintain farm sector confidence to encourage growth in milk production.

“Other factors, such as the Australian domestic market, decline of the Australian dollar and fall in oil prices are helping to insulate the sector,” said Mr Repacholi.

“But farmers should remain on their guard as the international dairy market can change rapidly as global supply outweighs demand.

“Drought in New Zealand has potential to reduce supply, if this coincides with reduced EU production the situation will again change,” he said.

“Nationally, consumer sentiment has remained tilted towards pessimism despite most major dairy categories are showing better retail growth with cheese and dairy spreads moving to higher average prices and consumer spending at cafes and restaurants remaining healthy,” said Mr Repacholi.

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