Action stations for Queensland agriculture

News release | 24-May-2018

Queensland’s multi-billion dollar agriculture and food sector now has a new 10-year research, development and extension (RD&E) action plan to move forward and meet the challenges of the future.

Minister for Agricultural Industry Development Mark Furner said rapidly-evolving technology, emerging Asian markets, strengthened biosecurity, a variable climate and changing research needs all provided challenges and opportunities for the Queensland agriculture industry in the next decade.

“Despite the current six-year drought and the impacts of periodic cyclones, the value of Queensland’s agriculture sector had risen to nearly $20 billion, rising by an annual average of 1.4 per cent over the past decade,” Mr Furner said.

“We want to futureproof our industry so this level of growth can continue on a sustainable basis.

“The Agriculture and Food Research, Development and Extension 10-Year Roadmap and Action Plan will focus RD&E efforts to support our agri-industries to remain at the forefront nationally and continue to attract investment funding.”

Mr Furner said the plan will further strengthen biosecurity protections and, in some cases, change farming practices to achieve greater sustainability.

“Over the past 18 months, we have worked very closely with industry stakeholders, the research sector and other government agencies to develop this whole-of-government plan which represents a comprehensive overview of Queensland’s agriculture and food sector’s RD&E priorities,” he said.

“Rapid market growth in Asia represents a transformative opportunity for our producers who have the advantage of proximity and a reputation as a provider of world class food.

“To better harness these opportunities, we have arrived at a set of 14 sets of actions organised around the goals of boosting innovation and commercialisation; identifying agriculture and food RD&E opportunities; and supporting the sector to grow and develop new businesses.”

The plan has considered our:

  • Challenges – access to RD&E funding and investment capital; adopting research findings to increase sustainable productivity; biosecurity threats; capability and skills gaps; and climate change.
  • Strengths – diverse agro-climatic zones and natural resources; increasing use of technology; world-leading tropical/subtropical agriculture and food RD&E expertise and infrastructure; strong partnerships with industry; and proximity to export markets.
  • Actions to Date – Advance Queensland initiative and industry roadmaps; Advancing North Queensland Plan; the Queensland Reef Water Quality Program; Queensland Climate Adaptation Strategy 2017-2030; Queensland Science and Research Priorities; Queensland Biosecurity Strategy 2018-2023; and the Government’s Sustainable Fisheries Strategy 2017-2027.

This Roadmap and Action Plan is one of a suite of roadmaps developed for different industry sectors under the Advance Queensland initiative, which promotes knowledge-based jobs and the economy of the future.

The Agriculture and Food Research, Development and Extension 10-Year Roadmap and Action Plan can be viewed at

Media contact: Brock Taylor, 0427018178