Co-investment funding scheme

The purpose of the Co-investment funding scheme was to support initiatives that encourage sustainable economic development in regional communities likely to be affected by the implementation of the Murray-Darling Basin Plan (MDBP).

The Murray-Darling Basin Regional Economic Diversification Program (MDBREDP) co-investment funding scheme was designed to provide direct financial support to farm and post farm gate businesses to enable the development of new high value horticultural value chains.

A total of $1.2 m was made available and delivered over 3 rounds to support businesses to establish new horticultural value chains in the Balonne and Border Rivers districts, with uptake predominately around Inglewood and St George.

Application process

The application process included an expression of interest stage 1 application, with successful proponents required to submit a stage 2 business plan for the project.

Grant funding to support businesses

A total of 17 projects were successful in securing co-investment funding across the Balonne and Border Rivers catchment area. The successful projects generating an extra $3.5 million in economic activity through the region, assisting local businesses adjust to a situation of reduced water allocation and establishing alternative cropping systems with the potential to generate higher value earnings per hectare.

  • View the map of the focus area for assessing crop suitability

    Focus area for Assessing Crop Suitability

  • View the map of successful projects funded under the MDBREDP

Project details

Read more about the projects funded under this program:

  • Round 1 projects

    Early season stone fruit

    This project supports the transition from a mid-season producer of peaches and nectarines, to an early-season producer of peaches and nectarines together with exclusive high value black plums.

    Rapid cooling system

    This project will install a rapid cooling system on farm to remove the field heat from the picked fruit increasing the shelf life of the fruit and allow for control of a market program.

    Blueberry production

    The Blueberry production project assesses the commercial viability of new varieties of non-deciduous Blueberries in the St George region.

    Citrus production

    This project will support diversification into a mixed Citrus growing operation of seedless Afourer Mandarins for export markets, Tahitian Limes and Australian Native Limes as an opportunity crop for either domestic or export markets.

    Garlic production

    The Garlic production project will develop and build suitable infrastructure to plant, store and process commercial volumes of garlic for commercial supply and seed production.

    Early season stone fruit frost protection

    This project will install overhead irrigation system to ensure production in early season varieties of stone fruit are not impacted by frost at flowering time.

  • Round 2 projects

    Pomegranates

    This project will assess the commercial viability of producing pomegranate products in the St George region. If successful this will lead to a rapid expansion of the planted area with the intention to build a processing facilities within the region. It will enable a diversification of income and utilisation of key resources particularly in years of low water availability.

    Pumpkin seeds (Pepita)

    This project involves both the implementation and development of a new high value horticultural production system by growing pumpkins for the production of pumpkin seed and pumpkin seed oil for the confectionary and health food markets.

    Vegetable production

    The aim of this project is to provide capacity to transition existing pumpkin production from domestic supply to an export market focus.

    Inglewood produce service centre

    This project will develop an Inglewood Produce Service Centre with a hydro/vacuum cooling system, to provide the required services to move locally grown produce to a marketable product and through to market.

  • Round 3 projects

    Low chill cherries

    This project will redevelop an area of current production into a high density orchard of early season sweet cherries.

    Garlic production

    This project will develop and build suitable infrastructure to plant, store and process commercial volumes of garlic for commercial supply and seed production.

    Hydroponics

    This project will establish an organic vegetable production operation and supply.

    Garlic production

    This project will develop a garlic production system near Texas through a staged program of expansion and the introduction of mechanisation for both planting and harvesting over the next three years

    Nursery

    This project will assist with increasing efficiencies and scale for existing tree nursery operation and allow expansion of business to improve sustainability and to develop as a prominent supplier to commercial orchards.

    Jujubes

    This project will develop a high density Jujube orchard for domestic and export markets. Developing branding and website for the Jujubes and looking to value add product for higher return.

    Vegetable production

    This project will further develop a diverse range of crops that have export potential and to provide custom horticultural services to growers within our region.

    Vegetable production

    This project will further capitalise on the growth opportunities through the installation of a hydro/vacuum cooling system at the Inglewood site. Hydro/vacuum cooling will provide improved shelf-life and product quality and widen the scope of products grown in the Inglewood Texas area for export.