A NEW grains research facility in Northam will enable scientists, industry and the community to come together to address grains production issues and keep the WA industry ahead of international competition, according to Agriculture and Food Minister Alannah MacTiernan.
The new $11.5 million state-of-the-art scientific research facilities were officially opened on May 2.
Ms MacTiernan said the new Northam Grains Research Facilities would also provide a scientific base to nurture the next generation of grains researchers, with opportunities for tertiary students to work alongside seasoned scientists.
“The new facilities will put Northam on the map as one of Australia’s foremost grains research destinations, potentially attracting participants from far and wide to the benefit of the Avon Valley business community,’’ she said.
The facilities include four new and five upgraded high-tech laboratories, new storage, preparation and processing rooms, a chemical preparation area, potting area, glasshouses, screenhouses, controlled environment rooms and cool stores, along with netted, fenced and irrigated field research plots.
The new assets and equipment will boost the State’s existing regional grains research capacity and improve the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development’s ability to deliver projects in association with long-time partners, the Grains Research and Development Corporation.
Researchers from the public and private sector as well as universities will be encouraged to use the facilities and work together to advance the state’s valuable grains industry.