Country airport funds
The Regional Aviation Association of Australia has applauded Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack's confirmation of $100 million in grants to regional airports for essential airport infrastructure maintenance.
"The RAAA has long argued regional airports are essential transport infrastructure, just like roads and rail, and should be treated the same way," said chief executive officer Mike Higgins.
The move was a much-valued and necessary contribution to the regional aviation industry.
"This significant financial assistance will help regional airport owners to keep aircraft landing charges and head taxes to a reasonable level, resulting in sustainable and viable air services to the regions," he said.
The RAAA represents the interests of aviation businesses employing more than 2500 people, carrying well more than 2m passengers a year and more than 23,000 tonnes of freight.
Camperdown Dairy grows
Australian Dairy Nutritionals Group is revving up its move from dairy farming to organic nutritional formula powders, outlaying $5 million for a secondhand processing plant to be assembled at its Camperdown Dairy site in Victoria.
The equipment will be imported, having previously made powder at an unspecified overseas site for the Chinese market.
Formerly called Australian Dairy Farms, the ADN group expects to have its own branded organic infant formula range on the market by mid-2020.
Late last year ADN gained a toehold in organic formula after paying $1.5m for Flahey's Nutritionals, owner of the Future brand of children's nutritional powder lines which is also expanding into organic adult supplements.
The new plant has capacity to produce up to 600,000 tins of infant formula a year and comes with a cheese making facility, which will supply organic byproducts to support the powder unit.
ADN's Camperdown Dairy Company has also extended a contract with New Zealand yoghurt brand The Collective, potentially doubling the value of that production relationship.
Camperdown makes 17 products for The Collective for Woolworths supermarkets and will now add to the range after installing a high speed pouch machine to boost production.
Nuffield scholars wanted
Nuffield Australia has opened applications for its leading agricultural research scholarship for farmers looking to unearth innovative practices and check out global networks which could help them change in their businesses.
More than 25 Nuffield Scholarship will be granted in 2020, each valued at $30,000.
The application period runs until June 14, directed at young farmers and focused on the theme "collaborate, innovate and cultivate".
Interim Nuffield Australia chief executive officer, and 2013 scholar, Jodie Redcliffe, said the program sowed the seeds of change for farmers.
Individuals, farm businesses and agricultural industries flourished as a result of the experiences gained during the 18-month scholarship period.
Nuffield Scholars join a global study program undertaking 16 weeks of individual and group travel as they delve into their chosen study topic.
Successful recipients will be announced at Nuffield Australia's Brisbane national conference from September 17 to 19.
- For more information, or to apply, visit https://nuffield.com.au/scholarships/.
New fertiliser director
Incitec Pivot Fertilisers has strengthened its agronomy and innovation team, with the appointment of Jan Edwards as director of agronomy and ideation.
She is accountable for insights to fuel the innovation process and demand planning.
Ms Edwards leads the company's six-member agronomy team who are industry leaders in plant nutrition research, development and advice for customer agronomists and the broader agronomy and farming community.
She previously managed research, development and extension programs with farmers for more than 20 years, joining Incitec Pivot Fertilisers after eight years with the Grains Research and Development Corporation, most recently as senior regional manager - north.
She also worked with NSW Department of Primary Industries for 15 years, including as Cowra district agronomist.