New funding expands leading Queensland dairy farming research

News release | 20-Apr-2018

Queensland’s innovative C4 milk research project will enter the next phase of trials with Dairy Australia providing $2.1 million to extend the program for another five years.

Department of Agriculture and Fisheries Dairy Team Leader Craig Findsen said the investment reflected the project’s national benefit to farming systems outside Queensland and Northern New South Wales.

“Our team at the Gatton-based research dairy are renowned for their applied, contemporary research and development that can be readily adopted by industry and this project has already refined the quality of crops considerably,” he said.

“The C4 milk research aims to improve the quality of pastures and crops to increase milk production from forage, increasing profit margins for dairy farmers by reducing their overall feed-related costs.

“This is an exciting time for the development of new farming strategies for the dairy industry and we encourage all farmers to be involved in our next C4 milk activities to improve their profitability.”

Mr Findsen said the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries will deliver a number of large scale grazing trials under the new agreement with Dairy Australia.

“The initial experiment will look at how the pre-grazing height and pasture structure of lucerne affects the feed intake, diet quality and milk production of dairy cows,” he said.

“While some farmers are already confident in grazing lucerne, many are concerned about the risk of animal bloat and persistence of the lucerne crop from over grazing.

“Based on previous trials, the C4 Milk team has found significantly higher milk production when grazing lucerne compared to kikuyu, with no effects of bloat and minimal damage to the crop.”

Farmers and industry providers are invited to a Research and Development Open Day to see the animal grazing trial in full swing.

The Open Day on Friday, 18 May 2018 will be held at UQ’s Gatton Research Dairy from 10.30 am to 1.00 pm.

For more information about the event, call the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries on 13 25 23.

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