Sugarcane Field Trial Compendium released – show casing results from 20 long term trials in Queensland.

Industry Release
3 August 2020
Sugarcane Field Trial Compendium released – show casing results from 20 long term trials in Queensland.

A collection of research reports from trials conducted by the Coastal Farming Systems team at the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) has just been released – the Sugarcane Field Trial Compendium.

The Compendium details the results of twenty trials, carried out over a number of years. These trials have taken place from Bundaberg to the Wet Tropics, on a range of soil types using a wide range of sugarcane varieties.

“Research is vital and underpins the critical extension and communication work we deliver to the producer and agronomist community,” said Mark Hickman Director Sustainable Farming Systems, DAF.

“The Compendium provides information on our trial reports and is structured to provide the information in an easily digestible format that gives background, trial methodology and a summary of the results as well as a section on the implications of these results for the producer.”

Coastal Farming Systems team leader Neil Halpin said that the compendium captures a large body of work carried out by the Coastal Farming Systems team in an effort to assist sugarcane growers adopt more sustainable practices.

“Eleven of our trials clearly demonstrate that nitrogen application rates based on the Six-Easy-Steps (6ES) to nutrient management guidelines produced the same cane yield as more traditional application rates. The reduction in nitrogen had the advantage of reduced input costs thereby improving grower profitability. Better matching nitrogen application to crop demand also has the potential to reduce losses to the environment, thereby improving water quality.

“The field trial activity also evaluated a range of enhanced efficiency fertilisers, like polymer coated and nitrification inhibitor products. The trials also highlighted that 6ES guidelines for fertiliser application after soybean and mill mud applications offer significant fertiliser and cost savings. read more



Representatives from BDCG were given the opportunity to address the senate committee for enquiry into “Identification of leading practices in ensuring evidence based regulation of farm practices that impact water quality outcomes in the Great Barrier Reef” in Brisbane on Monday of this week in support of submission that was lodged in November 2019.

BDCG highlighted a number of issues:

• that members take their environmental stewardship responsibilities very seriously including the health of the GBR
• growers consider themselves to be the caretakers of the land
• due to high input costs, reducing margins, lower prices etc. farmers can ill afford to unnecessarily apply fertiliser and chemicals beyond crop requirements
• financial cost to agriculture to meet state government introduced regulations
• integrity and reliability of the reef science on which legislation and funding decisions are made on
• damming findings from recent CCC review of 3 Qld universities looking at “reducing the risk of research fraud”
• group of international scientists unable to obtain consistent results from repeated experiments of 8 JCU studies confirming that a “replication crisis” exists
• organisation members being fully supportive of an independent authority as suggested by Dr Ridd to “check the science” on which government policy and funding decisions are made and
• calling upon the Federal Government to set aside a nominal amount of funding for this purpose.

Les Elphinstone
Manager KCGO



Leader of the Opposition, Deb Frecklington, together with Member for Burdekin, Dale Last MP were in the Burdekin on Monday 27th July to jointly announce LNP’s water pricing policy. As a representative of the Burdekin’s key industry and given announcement will have a direct impact on our members, KCGO was invited to attend with your Chairman, Robert Malaponte representing our organisation.

Media release and Channel 7 news coverage of event is below.

LNP to slash water prices for Queensland farmers
Monday, July 27, 2020

Water prices paid by farmers will be slashed by almost 20% a year from 1 July 2021 in a major job-boosting election commitment by LNP Leader Deb Frecklington.

Ms Frecklington made the announcement in the Burdekin today as part of her economic plan to stimulate the economy and drag Queensland out of recession.

“A major part of the LNP’s plan to supercharge the regions and unleash industry is through new dams and water infrastructure,” Ms Frecklington said.

“Today we complement our bold dam building plan by slashing water costs for farmers.

“Cheaper water means more secure regional jobs and a near 20% reduction in water costs is a major job-creator for regional Queensland.

“I want Queensland to be Australia’s food bowl and cheaper water costs will be a
catalyst for that.”

Ms Frecklington said the LNP will implement recommendations from the Queensland Competition Authority (QCA) to reduce water costs by transitioning SunWater to a regulated asset-based (RAB) approach for financing asset renewals.

The RAB approach recovers costs from customers as incurred yearly rather than attempting to estimate the replacement cost of an asset at the end of its life.

By adopting the QCA’s recommendation to modernise the way Sunwater calculates its asset renewal allowances, as has been done in other states, Sunwater will be more efficient and adopt new technologies. read more

Burdekin Economic Development Strategy & Economic Advisory Group


Burdekin Shire Council has formalised an Economic Advisory Group to enable business and industry to effectively engage and collaborate with Council on economic development matters which are relevant to the local government area. Expressions of interest are now open to persons interested in being a member of the Economic Advisory Group. Further information is available in the following documents.

Les Elphinstone
Manager KCGO

thumbnail of Economic Advisory Group – Terms of Reference – July 2020

thumbnail of Economic Advisory Group Nomination Form