The Kee to productive soil

Western Vic farmers learn about productive soil approach


Feed Management
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The Olsen family's award-winning soil carbon and beef operation in Hallora, West Gippsland, Victoria, was the focus of a visit from the Heytesbury District and Central Ottways Landcare Networks last week.

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The Olsen family's award-winning soil carbon and beef operation in Hallora, West Gippsland, Victoria, was the focus of a visit from the Heytesbury District and Central Ottways Landcare Networks on Wednesday.

The group of 24, including beef and dairy farmers, made the eight-hour return trip from Timboon, Vic, to visit the operation.

"It was a fantastic day and one of the best I've had in relation to the future of agriculture," Cooriemungle, Vioc, dairy farmer Alex McKenzie said.

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The group heard a presentation in the Soilkee workshop where the machines are fabricated before walking through the Olsen's paddocks, inspecting mixed species pasture crops and the structure of the sweet-smelling soil.

"If I took 15 samples across my farm I wouldn't see as many worms as Niels collected in just one," Kawarren, Vic, beef farmer Lindsay Riches said.

"It is impressive - the number of worms there are and how friable the soil is."

Niels Olsen is the Inventor of the Soilkee Pasture Renovator and together with Corporate Carbon was issued the first soil carbon credits under the Australian Government's Emissions Reduction Fund in March.

Mr Olsen uses the Soilkee to sow annual crops into his perennial pastures filling the summer and winter feed gaps.

The Soilkee action activates the soil biology and improves productivity, nutrient availability and water-holding capacity.

"Dry matter yields have increased from 7 tonnes/hectare five years ago to 20 t/ha now, without applying any nitrogenous fertiliser," Mr Olsen said.

He also is achieving significant rates of carbon sequestration, which will earn him over $100/ha in carbon credit sales.

Heytesbury District Landcare Network landcare co-ordinator Geoff Rollinson said: "This trip was one of the best activities we've undertaken in the course of promoting regenerative agriculture in the south-west region."

Soil carbon solutions company, AgriProve cohosted the event with the Olsen's.

The Agri-startup was spun out from Corporate Carbon, one of the largest multi-sector carbon contractors operating under the ERF.

Its focus is guiding farmers on the journey from building carbon in the soil to selling their carbon credits.

The Olsen's farm is AgriProve's flagship soil carbon project.

The $20K AgriProve 20/20 Oslen Prize for Soil Carbon Farming will go to the next farmer who can achieve the 20/20 regenerative standard: 20 tonnes of dry matter yield plus an additional 20 tonnes of soil carbon abatement per hectare in 12 months under an ERF project.

The prize is rainfall adjusted see www.agriprove.io for details.

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