Australian Government Innovation in Agriculture Land Management Award
This award is presented to a primary producer or enterprise for demonstrating innovation in agriculture land management through leadership or application that delivers improved natural resource management and farm productivity outcomes.
John Ive, ACT
John and his partner Robyn have transformed their Yass Valley grazing property from an eroded, salt-encrusted wasteland to a productive sheep, cattle, and farm forestry operation.
Using targeted monitoring, John has measured groundwater depth and salinity as well as dam salinities and subsurface water flows.
By increasing native vegetation and conservation areas, John has excluded domestic stock from almost a third of the property while increasing farm productivity on his most fertile reclaimed flats.
Kadwell Potato Co, NSW
A fourth-generation potato farmer, Garry’s 700-hectare property in Crookwell is a model for the integration of conservation and farm management.
By dedicating 32 percent of his property to conservation areas or ecological zones, Garry has increased productivity across the board, producing an average of 2000 tons of seed potato and 1800 prime lambs annually.
Garry has also secured a consistent water supply and drought-proofed the property, making it a fully functional wetland and wildlife breeding area, as well as ensuring the farm’s irrigation into the future.
Precision Pastoral, NT
In partnership with Ninti One Limited and the Northern Territory Government’s Department of Primary Industries, Precision Pastoral developed a program that allows pastoralists to integrate animal and pasture data.
By linking livestock performance to environmental conditions the program promotes more efficient, productive pastoral management.
Called the Precision Pastoral Management Tool, farmers making decisions about stocking rates or land management can use the tool to give them a better understanding of groundcover trends and animal condition, as well as to reduce their monitoring costs.
Clover Hills Cluster Group, QLD
Clover Hills Cluster Group is made up of five Central Western Queensland graziers, who joined forces to build a fence to keep feral animals out.
Since 2015, the group has erected a 1.6-metre high netting fence, covering an area of 33,545 hectares.
The benefits of the fence include a 90% rise in lambing, $495,000 in extra wool production, improved pasture conditions, and the return of native small mammals and lizards to the area.
Tom Robinson, SA
Tom’s innovative practices have significantly improved soil health and productivity on his 4,000-acre property in Hoyleton.
The multi-species companion and cover crops he has planted are improving soil productivity and farm gate returns while reducing farm inputs.
Tom’s ability to modify machinery to meet farmer needs has hastened the adoption of the dry-land farming system in his region.
He has worked closely with the South Australian No-Till Farmers Association as a board member and chair, as well as with other Landcare organisations to promote the benefits of retaining crop residues.
Simon Falkiner, VIC
Simon’s 600-acre mixed-enterprise family farm at Freshwater Creek produces meat merinos, cereals and oilseed crops while prioritising farming techniques that preserve the land’s biodiversity.
Simon’s focus on maintaining soil health and his integrated pest and grazing management has made him a leading advocate for best-practice Landcare.
His farm has hosted long-term trials testing everything from soil acidification and biology, to pasture cover and cropping.
He’s also undertaken extensive riparian restoration along Thompsons Creek to protect remnant vegetation, and assisted in monitoring the threatened Yarra pygmy perch and growling grass frog.