Australia and China launch joint grain research centre

22.09.2016

Australia and China have announced a grains biosecurity research centre partnership.

The Australia-China Joint Centre for Postharvest Grain Biosecurity and Quality Research is a partnership between Australia’s Plant Biosecurity Cooperative Research Centre (CRC), Murdoch University and China’s Academy of State Administration of Grain.

Grain is Australia’s most significant agricultural export, while China is the world’s largest producer of wheat.

“Global grain markets are changing and we need to change with them. Established methods for stored grain pest control are facing increased pressure from both regulation and changing market preferences for non-chemical options,” said Dr Michael Robinson, CEO of the Plant Biosecurity CRC.

“A major challenge is increasing insect resistance to the stored grain fumigant phosphine, a mainstay of the grains industry globally,” he said.

The joint centre will bring together researchers from both China and Australia to work on developing non-chemical controls to manage stored grain pests, with the aim of reducing biosecurity and trade risks while providing clean grain.

“This partnership will assist both nations in protecting domestic and international grains markets, maintaining access and ensuring food security,” said Dr Robinson.

The joint centre will focus on innovative technologies such as the use of nitrogen for stored grain pest management and ‘lure and kill’ pest control using pheromones and light-based trapping systems. The partnership will work with grain suppliers and companies to commercialise the research and deliver it to industry.


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