Fresh faces bring new eyes and ears to regional cropping networks

image of rcsn
Since its establishment in 2012, the Southern RCSN has played a pivotal role in prioritising issues confronting growers and shaping targeted GRDC investments in research, development and extension. Photo: GRDC

From Conara in northern Tasmania to Flynns Creek in Victoria’s Gippsland and across to Buckleboo on South Australia’s Eyre Peninsula – membership of the Grains Research and Development Corporation’s new-look Southern Regional Cropping Solutions Network (RCSN) stretches far and wide.

Southern RCSN members have been appointed for the coming two-year term, bringing to this important institution a diversity of not only geographical representation but also knowledge, skills and experience.

A total of 38 RCSN members have been appointed for the current term and will be led by three experienced network leads and an overall co-ordinator.

GRDC Grower Relations Manager – South, Courtney Ramsey, says the RCSN provides a transparent process to ensure priority grains industry issues in the southern region (SA, Victoria and Tasmania) are captured and assists the GRDC in developing investments, which deliver the knowledge, tools and technology required for growers to adopt improved farming practices that will increase profitability.

“Since its establishment in 2012, the Southern RCSN has played a pivotal role in identifying and prioritising the constraints and opportunities facing growers and shaping targeted GRDC investments in research, development and extension (RD&E),” Ms Ramsey says.

“Over recent years, the RCSN’s role has focused on analysing the important issues, reviewing existing investments and identifying ideas for RD&E to improve the profitability of growers.”

Providing advice to GRDC staff and the GRDC Southern Region Panel, the RCSN comprises three groups, each of which is focused on soil types, climatic conditions and farming systems within a particular production zone – low rainfall, medium rainfall and high rainfall, across the three States.

Network members are growers, researchers, advisers and agribusiness professionals who liaise closely with, and represent, growers and the wider grains community within their local areas and respective rainfall zone.

Southern Region Panel members are intimately connected to the network through direct participation as standing members on the Southern RCSN.

Ms Ramsey thanked outgoing Southern RSCN members who had served three terms and made a significant contribution to the grains industry, whilst also welcoming new members. Composition of the Southern RCSN for 2019-20 is:

Southern Regional Cropping Solutions Network Manager: Courtney Ramsey, GRDC Grower Relations Manager – South.

Southern Regional Cropping Solutions Co-ordinator: Jen Lillecrapp, Struan (SA).

High Rainfall Zone:

Lead – Cam Nicholson, Geelong (Victoria).

Tasmanian members – Simon Burgess (new), Conara.

Victorian members – Rowan Paulet (continuing), Flynns Creek; Jim Zwar (continuing), Glenthompson; Craig Drum (continuing), Tatyoon; Peter McCann (continuing), Ceres; Roger Armstrong (new), Horsham; Vernon Dawson (new), Skipton; Vicky French (new), Vite Vite; Simon Gabb (new), Shelford.

SA members – Brett Gilbertson (continuing), Millicent; Jenny Stanton (continuing), Kingscote; Adam Hancock (continuing), Naracoorte; Craig Hole (new), Naracoorte.

Panel members – Mike McLaughlin, Adelaide (SA); Jon Midwood, Inverleigh (Victoria); Fiona Marshall, Mulwala (NSW); Michael Chilvers, Nile (Tasmania).

Medium Rainfall Zone:

Lead – John Stuchbery, Donald (Victoria).

Victorian members – Gavin Sait (continuing), Charlton; John Robertson (continuing), Horsham; Bruce Macague (continuing), Rochester; Denise McLellan (new), Horsham; Luke Milgate (new), Serpentine; Simon Mock (new), Horsham.

SA members – Andrew Slater (continuing), Curramulka; Steven Jaeschke (continuing), Keith; Andrew Hansen (continuing), Coomandook; Sam Holmes (continuing), Maitland; Steve Richmond (continuing), Jamestown; Matt Howell (new), Meningie; Sarah Noack (new), Hart.

Panel members – John Bennett, Lawloit (Victoria); Richard Murdoch, Warooka (SA); Andrew Russell, Rutherglen (Victoria).

Low Rainfall Zone:

Leads – John Stuchbery, Donald (Victoria), and Barry Mudge, Port Germein (SA).

Victorian members – Alistair Murdoch (continuing), Kooloonong; Tim McClelland (continuing), Birchip; Peter Baird (new), Wentworth, NSW.

SA members – Chris Crouch (continuing), Wandearah; Andrew Biele (continuing), Loxton; Wade Nickolls (continuing), Pinnaroo; Tristan Baldock (continuing), Buckleboo; Louise Flohr (continuing), Lameroo; Brian Lynch (continuing), Loxton; Chris Lymn (new), Wudinna; Sean Mason (new), Magill; Andrew Ware (new), Port Lincoln.

Panel members – Peter Kuhlmann, Mudamuckla (SA); Rohan Mott, Ninda (Victoria); Kate Wilson, Hopetoun (Victoria).

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