The Department of Agriculture and Food is urging fruit and vegetable growers in Carnarvon to register for a free on-farm assessment of their irrigation systems.
Comprehensive on-farm assessments of fruit and vegetable-growing businesses will be conducted in the Carnarvon area from 6 to 19 June as part of the department’s More Dollars per Drop project.
Department development officer James Dee said about 35 fruit and vegetable growers had already signed up, but more were needed to make the most of this opportunity.
“The aim of the initiative is to assist the different irrigated agricultural industries to understand how water resources are managed and where there are opportunities for growers to improve water use efficiency,” Mr Dee said.
“Participating growers will also be able to evaluate their current water use efficiency and potential for improvement against the industry range and average.”
Mr Dee said there were two parts to the assessment – an interview with growers about their irrigation system, watering schedule, pump performance and production; and technical tests conducted on their irrigation system to measure performance in the paddock.
Individual grower information will remain strictly confidential. Only ranges and averages of information collected will be supplied to the different industry groups for their use.
“On completion of the assessments and analysis of the results, the department will provide each grower with a report detailing identifying ways to improve the productivity and profitability of their farm operations,” Mr Dee said.
“The report will also enable growers to benchmark their enterprise against the high performing businesses in their industry.
“A summary of the report, protecting the identity of individual businesses, will be provided to respective industries as a useful baseline of its water use efficiency.”
For more information about the More Dollars per Drop project and details on how to participate in the on-farm assessments, growers should contact James Dee on (08) 9780 6285.
Media contacts: Lisa Bertram, media liaison +61 (0)8 9368 3937