Smarter farming kind to nature

Successful applicants for the Australian Government’s Smart Farms Small Grants program will be announced shortly, offering grants of $5000 to $100,000 for projects that reduce pressures on natural resources.

The funds help support on-ground projects delivered by local Landcare and community groups, as well as larger farming systems groups and Indigenous organisations, working to improve agricultural land and water resource condition.

The grants aim to encourage agricultural industries to adopt the use of innovative tools, technologies and land management practices to help reduce pressures on Australia’s natural resources while increasing industry productivity and profitability.

Smart Farms Small Grants is an open competitive grants program aimed at local and regional organisations with funding of $50 million to be allocated across six grant rounds. The grants were launched in October 2017 and will continue through to 2022-23.

The first round of grants attracted applications from across Australia addressing a range of natural resource management issues including the improvement of soil and vegetation conditions, pest control, climate change market traceability and management, and adoption of new technologies.

These submissions represented a variety of Australian agricultural systems including cropping, livestock, mixed farming, rangelands, marine, horticulture and sugar.

Successful round one projects will provide applicants with real opportunities to help protect Australia’s biodiversity and enhance soil health and vegetation management.

The next round of grants, offered in collaboration with the National Landcare Program, will open before the end of 2018.

For updates and more information on the Smart Farms Program, please visit the National Landcare Program website

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