Australia’s cotton industry is underpinned by an enormous research effort that is funded by cotton growers in partnership with the Australian government, through the Cotton Research and Development Corporation (CRDC). The cotton research program covers the business of farming, soil health and water management as well as human capacity (attracting, training and retaining the workforce) and the value chain.
The Australian cotton industry continually improves its practices, finding new ways of doing things better, smarter and more efficiently. There are hundreds of examples of how cutting edge R&D has improved the practice of growing, picking, transporting and marketing cotton – right through the supply chain.
Cotton growers themselves are scientists too, constantly investigating new and practical ways to save more water, reduce chemical use, improve soils and biodiversity, increase yields and improve profitability.
One of Cotton Australia’s roles is to direct the Cotton Research and Development Corporation in where growers think research investments should be made. This ensures that the research being delivered by the program is relevant, timely and will see real value at a practical level.
The Australian cotton industry groups research priorities under five core themes. These include:
- Farmers – including successful crop protection, on-farm resource use efficiency, innovations in cotton production.
- Industry – including stewardship, natural resource management, identifying and responding to threats.
- Customers – including cotton quality, the recognised value of Australian cotton, ensuring future demand for our cotton.
- People – including skilling and educating our industry workforce, creating networks and communication.
- Performance – including measuring and reporting on our industry’s performance, and continuous improvement under best management practices.