1. Introduction

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The GRDC 2018-23 Research, Development and Extension (RD&E) Plan will describe the investment priorities and strategies the GRDC will use to deliver on its purpose:

Invest in RD&E to create enduring profitability for Australian grain growers

For the 2018-23 Strategic RD&E Plan, GRDC will develop a strategic framework and investments to deliver against the broad components of profitability through these five profit drivers (yield, price, costs – on farm and post farm gate and risk) and three core frameworks (data management and analytics, grower communications and adoption, and capacity and skills) that underpin all investments.

While the plan has a legislated requirement to extend over five years,1 the long term nature of R&D and the time lags associated with adoption and impact on-farm necessitate a broader, long term assessment of the requirements of grain growers to remain profitable in an increasingly competitive international environment. As such, this plan will focus on outcomes delivered over the longer term of 10-20 years.

The strategic focus over a 10-20 year timeframe requires assumptions to be made on future grower needs and RD&E
priorities. Some assumptions will prove to be inaccurate or will change in response to adjustments in global grain supply and demand dynamics, global political and environmental changes and as new production opportunities and constraints are identified. Likely global and domestic trends, and the potential impact on investment opportunities are explored in the background of this document.

To adapt to this continually evolving environment, GRDC is adopting a more agile approach to strategic planning and investment management. This will involve the regular review of strategic priorities as well as active management of investments targeted at specific outcomes incorporating flexible R&D discovery and adoption approaches. The aim will be to maximise impact and embrace a greater level of risk necessary to deliver transformational, high impact outcomes.

Partnerships and alliances with research collaborators and the private sector will play an increasingly important role in the integration and adoption of new practices and technologies. The GRDC will bring together representatives from specialist research areas and various industry sectors, including agronomists, growers and scientists, to plan the required RD&E to build the grains industry’s capacity for change. As well as involving large numbers of grain growers in developing, testing and implementing new technologies and production systems, the GRDC will encourage grain growers, researchers and the wider industry to participate throughout the research cycle.

Primary Industries Research and Development Act 1989 (Cth), section 19.