Graham Centre develops closer ties with Indonesian agricultural scientists

Twenty-two high ranking Indonesian agricultural scientists visited the E H Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation at Wagga Wagga last week to identify opportunities for collaborative projects in agricultural research and extension.

The visit was organised by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR).

“There is great opportunity to strengthen agricultural research collaboration between Indonesia and Australia,” Director of the Graham Centre, Professor Deirdre Lemerle, said.

“It is amazing that many of the problems facing tropical agriculture in Indonesia are similar to the constraints facing agriculture in the temperate southern cropping systems of Australia.

“Greater resource efficiency is needed in both countries to reduce costs and minimise the impacts of agriculture on the environment.

“If we work together we can develop strategies to increase the efficient use of scarce resources, including land, water, energy and labour and reduce the requirement for fertiliser and pesticides.”

She said the group, which included scientists from government agencies and universities, was also interested in the establishment of the Graham Centre’s alliance between Charles Sturt University and NSW Department of Primary Industries, as they were planning to undertake similar collaborative arrangements in Indonesia.

“They are keen to develop similar alliances that develop strong linkages between research and extension, to ensure that research is relevant to farmers’ needs,” Professor Lemerle said.