A project to speed up flowering in macadamias has won the 2022 Science and Innovation Awards for Young People in Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.
Minister for Agriculture and Northern Australia David Littleproud said Dr Stephanie Kerr, Research Fellow at the Queensland University of Technology, was looking at ways to build resilience in the horticulture industry.
“Dr Kerr’s research is aiming to induce flowering in young macadamia plants, which can be used for speed breeding,” Minister Littleproud said.
“Macadamias are the only native Australian food to be used as a commercial food product internationally, but right now it can take up to 10 years for trees to flower, which slows down the process of breeding new cultivars.
“This research will make the horticulture industry quicker on its feet and more able to respond to new challenges like pests, diseases or climate.
“This kind of innovation and ingenuity is exactly what this award is about. Science, technology, and innovation are a big part of the answer to a more resilient Australian agriculture sector.
“I also want to thank the 11 other winners of the industry category awards.
“The range of projects submitted for the Minister’s Award was impressive and showed creative approaches to looking at industry issues.
“Dr Kerr’s project will now receive an additional $22,000 in funding, which will go towards testing her new techniques for flowering.
“I want to congratulate Dr Kerr and I look forward to the outcomes of her research.”
For more details go to www.awe.gov.au/scienceawards
· There were 12 Science and Innovation Award category award recipients in 2022—each supported by a research and development corporation or industry organisation.
· The awards are targeted at 18–35-year-old innovators, researchers, scientists and others with a commitment to the success of the agriculture, fisheries and forestry sectors.
Here is a list of the 2022 round winners and their projects:
|Mingkai Jiang||Forest & Wood Products Australia||Cost-benefit analysis of soil amendment to increase carbon sequestration of Australia plantation trees.|
|Stephanie Kerr||Hort Innovation||Engineering elite tree crops cultivars.|
|Bobbie Lewis Baida||Australian Wool Innovation||Scrotal thermoregulation of the ram: effects of heat stress on reproductive performance.|
|Xiaoqing Li||Cotton Research and Development Corporation||Traceable cotton fibres.|
|Amy Moss||Australian Eggs||A practical strategy to implement precision nutrition for layer hens via liquid mineral inclusion to drinking water.|
|Sonya Moyes||Australian Meat Processor Corporation||Impact of residual glycogen on sensory attributes of Australian lamb.|
|Samantha Sawyer||Wine Australia||Sniffing smoke taint – Sensing phenols in the vineyard and the winery.|
|Thomas Schmidt||CSIRO Biosecurity digital innovation||Building a leafminer genomic databank to track incursions and adaptation.|
|Lauren Staveley||Australian Pork Limited||Qualitative behaviour assessment to define worker attitude and labour disparity between confinement free and traditional farrowing crates.|
|Valentin Thépot||Fisheries Research and Development Corporation||Seaweed as a natural feed supplement to boost growth and immunity in farmed crustaceans.|
|Ashiwin Vadiveloo||AgriFutures Australia||Wastewater grown microalgae as a source of biofertilizer and bio-stimulant for emerging crops.|
|Jaco Zandberg||Grains Research and Development Corporation||Silencing the frost damage caused by ice nucleating bacteria in Australian fields.|