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Department of Environment and Science

Queensland Government

Science portfolio of the Department of Environment and Science

Department of Environment and Science

Queensland science capability directory

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Institute for Future Farming Systems (IFFS)

Researcher with a data gathering collar for improved cattle management

Central Queensland University

CQUniversity’s agricultural research program is a world-leader in delivering practical solutions which are bolstering the productivity, profitability and sustainability of the livestock and horticulture sectors. It is internationally recognised for its specialist skills in the development of non-invasive, precision management tools, with its research in this area independently assessed as above world class (ERA ratings of 4 and 5 in the last two assessments). In mid 2015 CQUniversity established its flagship Institute for Future Farming Systems to drive the delivery of new agricultural innovations, and provide an environment for practical, skills-based training and research-led teaching. Importantly, its research is grounded in industry needs – researchers live and work in the communities they serve, with staff working closely with industry partners and primary producers in Bundaberg (Australia’s largest vegetable producing region) and Rockhampton (Australia’s beef capital).

Website https://www.cqu.edu.au/research/organisations/institute-for-future-farming-systems

Key science sectors

Strengths and capabilities

  • Precision horticulture
  • Non-invasive sensor technologies
  • Precision livestock management
  • Improving poultry health and performance through microbiota
  • Animal behaviour and environmental interaction
  • Agricultural value chain management
  • Agricultural communication and extension
  • Automated data gathering & analysis technologies
  • Crop agronomy
  • Near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS)

Facilities and major equipment

  • CQ Innovation Research Precinct - labs, animal house & glass houses
  • Belmont Research Station - 3260ha grazing property
  • Access to Emerald and Longreach farms of Queensland Agricultural Training College

Number of research staff

20–100 research staff

Address

CQUniversity Australia, Bruce Hwy, North Rockhampton QLD 4702

Lead researchers

  • Professor Kerry Walsh—International expert in the development of on-farm tools using NIR spectroscopy for measurement of fruit quantity and quality
  • Associate Professor Mark Trotter—International expert in developing sensor technology (e.g. biomass, location, behaviour) for precision livestock management
  • Associate Professor Daniel Cozzolino—Internationally recognised expert in the application of spectroscopy and chemometrics in agriculture; winner of the Tomas Hirschfeld Award

Achievements of the centre

  • Handheld near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) for predicting crop yield and fruit ripeness
  • Individual animal monitoring technology for application in remote and large scale grazing systems
  • Enhancement of the PNG sweet potato value chain through improved agronomy, variety and distribution

Other centre in Queensland

Organisation type

  • University Research Centre
  • Cooperative Research Centre – Partner Organisation
  • Queensland Government – Partner

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Last updated:
6 September 2018