Thursday, March 2, 2023


Mackay and Whitsunday Life

Growers At The Forefront Of New Tech

Last week Bowen Gumlu Growers Association (BGGA) and a number of growers and producers from across the Greater Whitsundays attended the Agrifutures Evoke Ag conference in Adelaide as part of a broader Queensland delegation led by the recently appointed Queensland Chief Entrepreneur Julia Spicer.

The event focused on discussion and learning toward the latest and greatest in Agricultural innovation and technology with significant presence by domestic and international vendors, investors and policymakers.  

Demonstrated was a range of Agtech across areas including but not limited to soil monitoring, irrigation, waste management, yield monitoring, supply chain traceability, farm data management, connectivity, AI and automation.

It was not only quite eye opening to see some of the technology coming down the line but reassuring to hear that our region is at the heart of these advancements, with many of our producers already seen as leaders in innovation and practice.

A significant theme of the event was around improving sustainability of our agricultural industries which has never been more evident within the national conversation around decarbonisation, clean energy and focus on reducing other environmental impacts of our key industries.

Part of our agenda and, I’d suggest one equally as important, was highlighting the role technology can play in making our farming businesses themselves more sustainable ensuring they can remain efficient and profitable, not just now but also ten years from now.

The current inflationary environment has been challenging for all in our communities, including farmers, who have seen two to three fold increases in costs of key farm inputs such as seed and fertiliser and continuing increases to transport costs making farming, and by extension food supply a business sector facing increased risk and volatility.

With a number of industry leaders in attendance and there to listen to the discussion including Federal Agricultural minister Murray Watt, BGGA has and will continue to promote the challenges and opportunities for new technology in our region highlighting the need for improved connectivity and progressing government investment into the development of the Agtech Ecosystem in North Queensland.

To this end, we’ll achieve what I’m sure we all want in furthering the mutually beneficial outcomes needed by both our farming communities and the environment.

Contributed with thanks to Ry Collins, President of BBGA

Qld Delegation to Evoke Ag 2023 including BGGA, QLD Chief Entrepreneur Julia Spicer and representatives from the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, Trade Investment QLD, Advance Queensland and QLD Agtech businesses. Photo supplied

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