CANE growers, millers and harvester operators in Mackay and Proserpine will be able to learn more about maximising their harvest at forums in May.
Harvesting efficiency and optimisation is the focus of the Sugar Research Australia forums, being held in 12 regional locations in the lead-up to the 2018 harvest.
Sugar Research Australia adoption officer for harvesting, Phil Patane, said improving harvesting efficiency was a complex problem that involved multiple stakeholders and considerations, but was also a major opportunity for the Australian industry to extract more from value chain.
"SRA has trial results building to show cane and sugar loss as a result of a range of economic drivers across the harvesting, transport, and milling value chain,” Mr Patane said.
"In some cases, practice change may come with additional costs, but SRA is working with growers, millers, and harvesting groups across the industry to provide them with precise information to help inform their decisions.
"In order to make practice change, the industry needs detailed information on what losses are occurring and what they stand to gain if they change practice to further optimise the harvest.
"This has been the focus of on-farm demonstration trials in 2017, where we have worked with local harvesting groups, in their own conditions, to define what sugar and cane loss they may be incurring.
"The 2018 forums will report extensively on the results of these demonstration trials. The forums will also be an opportunity for harvesting groups to take part in a new round of demonstration trials for the coming harvest. This will allow them to assess harvesting efficiency in their own local region, and local conditions.
The forums will also present information from a range of innovative research activities.
"We will hear about research that is looking at the design and function of harvesters to see if improvements can be made to ensure we are harvesting more sugar,” Mr Patane said.
"We will also hear about a new online tool, called SCHLOT, which provides advice for harvester operators to optimise the harvest.”
Sugar Research Australia's work in harvesting efficiency is being driven by a project called Enhancing the sugar industry value chain by addressing mechanical harvest losses through research, technology and adoption.
This project is funded by SRA and the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources as part of the Rural R&D for Profit program.
To view Sugar Research Australia events visit their website.
When: Tuesday May 1, 8am- noon
Where: Hotel Metropole
When: Wednesday May 2, 8am-noon
Where: Windmill Motel and Reception Centre
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March 5, 2018 at 10:19AM
Sugar Industry News
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