A$447.5 million committed to new agribusiness Cooperative Research Centres

11 Apr 2017

Australia’s universities, public and private sectors have committed to four new Cooperative Research Centres (CRCs) to help agricultural producers with innovation and technology.

Total funding across the four CRCs has reached A$447.5 million, demonstrating the high level of interest in Australia’s agricultural industries and flourishing agtech sector.

‘These four new CRCs are an exciting new chapter in Australia’s history of collaborative research between industry and government,’ says Tony Eyres, Senior Investment Specialist for Agribusiness and Food at Austrade.

‘CRCs bring together research and commercial organisations to address specific issues of importance to the Australian economy. Agriculture has been a key focus of CRCs since their inception in the 1990s.’

Food Agility CRC

The Food Agility CRC aims to empower Australia’s food industry to grow its comparative advantage through digital transformation. The CRC is led by the Knowledge Economy Institute, headquartered at the University of Technology Sydney, with partners including Curtin University and Queensland University of Technology.

The Australian Government has committed A$50 million, while private businesses and universities have committed an additional A$160 million, totalling A$210 million over 10 years.

CRC for High Performance Soils

The CRC for High Performance Soils (CRC-HPS) will help bridge the gap between soil science and farm management. Aimed at overcoming the most complex soil management issues, the CRC-HPS will integrate research across diverse fields including soil science, big data, sensor technology, nanotechnology, environmental science, social sciences and agricultural and farm management.

The Australian Government has committed A$39.5 million over 10 years to CRC-HPS, which is being led by the University of Newcastle. Forty-two partners spanning industry, government, research, not-for-profit and business sectors will commit an additional A$136 million.

CRC for Honey Bee Products

The CRC for Honey Bee Products aims to boost Australia’s valuable, but largely untapped honey bee products, by bringing together industry and academic expertise from across Australia. Products include honey, beeswax, pollen, royal jelly, venom and honey bee export.

The Australian Government has committed A$7 million over five years to the CRC, which is being led by the University of Western Australia. Private businesses will also provide additional funding support.

iMove CRC

iMove CRC, which will explore digital vehicle technologies, will receive A$55 million in federal government funding over 10 years. The technology has the potential to improve agricultural transport and logistics systems.