COTTONING ON: Bruce Finney, Executive Director of Cotton Research and Development Corporation, presents Barnaby Joyce with a memento at the Dalby Cotton Ginnery.
COTTONING ON: Bruce Finney, Executive Director of Cotton Research and Development Corporation, presents Barnaby Joyce with a memento at the Dalby Cotton Ginnery. Alasdair Young

Barnaby ginning up support from cotton

BARNABY Joyce came to Dalby spread the word today – and the word was “cotton”.

Supported by the Minister for Regional Development Fiona Nash, and tailed by LNP hopeful for the seat of Maranoa David Littleproud, Joyce announced a multi-million dollar boost to research and development.

He said the Federal Government was set to help growers ‘cotton on’ to the benefits of nitrogen use.

Nitrogen is critical for Australian agriculture, as it improves soil quality, crop yields and farmgate returns.

To explore this, a $5.9million R&D project shall be run by the Cotton R&D Corporation (CRDC).

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources Barnaby Joyce said part of the Coalition’s plan for jobs and growth was giving farmers the tools they need and that round two of the Rural Research and Development for Profit Programme would be highly beneficial for cotton growers.

“Those who work the land already know their soils are their greatest asset, and are always looking for ways to protect and improve it so they get greater returns for their efforts,” Mr Joyce said.

“This project will give us important information on how best to use fertilisers to address specific crop requirements and, in turn, increase profits for growers.

“The research will have wide-ranging benefits for a range of industries – notably cotton – but also the dairy, sugar and horticulture sectors. It will also underline the fact that farmers are at the frontline in looking after our country, reducing fertiliser leaching or run-off into creeks and rivers.

“In the spirit of getting the best bang for everyone’s buck, the grant will be matched by more than $9.7million in cash and in-kind contributions by CRDC and its partner organisations.”

Minister for Regional Development Fiona Nash said helping farmers get more from their soil could mean more jobs for regional areas.

“As a farmer myself, I know how important it is to get the most out of your soil,” Minister Nash said.

“Higher yields mean better returns and this gives farmers the opportunity to expand production and potentially put on more people. The positive effects can flow right through regional economies.”


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