Australia-China postharvest grain biosecurity partnership officially launched


A biosecurity research partnership between Australia and China has been officially launched.

The Australia-China Joint Centre for Postharvest Grain Biosecurity and Quality Research, based at Murdoch University in Perth, aims to reduce postharvest grain losses by focusing on research into grainstorage methods.

The partnership involves three parties - the Australian Plant Biosecurity Cooperative Research Centre (CRC), Murdoch University, and the Chinese Academy of State Administration of Grain.

Australian Plant Biosecurity CRC chief executive Michael Robinson said with China and Australia facing similar challenges when it came to postharvest grain losses, the partnership made sense.

"China produces a lot of grain, imports a lot of grain, and stores a lot of grain," Dr Robinson said.

"They have the same issues around insect resistance and insects damaging their grain in storage as we do, so it makes sense to collaborate internationally."

The centre was officially launched on Friday with a visit from a large Chinese delegation, including the administrator of China's State Administration of Grain, Ren Zhengxiao.

China's State Administration of Grain president Zheng Du believed the joint centre would have effects beyond China and Australia.

"This will not only reduce the grain waste and loss for Australia and China, but for the whole world," Professor Du said.

The centre has started work on understanding insect resistance to phosphine, and finding alternative, non-chemical treatment options.


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