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ACFA E-Newsletter

2 October 2020




Small Milling Research Program open for applications through SRA

1 October 2020 | SRA

The SMRP is a targeted initiative developed by SRA to work with sugarcane millers and researchers to deliver productivity, profitability, and sustainability outcomes.

This will be the fourth year of the investment scheme, and SRA is now calling for applications that will allow investment in small projects to develop a product, service, or process that will solve targeted problems in sugar mills and deliver tangible outputs with almost immediate outcomes. More...


Monthly Market and Grower Pricing Update - September 2020

28 October 2020 | QSL

While bearish sentiment dominated the first half of September, we've seen prices rally in the past week as the gloss finally started to come off the Australian Dollar and the ICE 11 prompt contract climbed over 13.50 USc/lb.

This delivered pricing opportunities close to $420/tonne actual for QSL growers using the 2020-Season Target Price Contract during the past week, sparking grower pricing activity.

Click here to read our full report.


Global sugar surplus headed our way

30 Sep 2020 | Farm Online

The upcoming worldwide cane and beet harvest, coupled with demand uncertainty, will underpin the emergence of a small global sugar surplus in the 2020/21 season, Rabobank says in its just-released Sugar Quarterly report. More...


NQ farmers surveyed on Burdekin water

30 September 2020 | Queensland Country Life

North Queensland farmers are being surveyed on what water they need as part of the business case for raising the Burdekin Falls Dam.

Natural Resources Minister Anthony Lynham said the survey launched by Building Queensland and SunWater today was critical to determining how much water was required to meet future demand - essential information for the wall-raising. More...

Molasses 'new normal' - short supply, high demand

30 September 2020 | Queensland Country Life

Reduced supplies of molasses for stockfeed in line with smaller cane crushes has sparked talk that beef producers should start thinking seriously about on-farm storage.

While La Nina conditions are far from the severe drought that drove demand for the high-energy feed to the point where it had to be imported during the past two seasons, market conditions are pointing to the likelihood higher molasses prices and shorter supply will be the 'new normal'. More...

2020 harvest: Sugar industry watches La Nina with concern

30 September 2020 | Queensland Country Life

The sugar industry says the rain bringing La Nina weather system is a cause for concern with more than 30 per cent of the 2020 cane crop still to be harvested.

Jim Crane from the Australian Sugar Milling Council said the confirmation of a La Nina weather pattern heightened the risk of rain disrupting the final weeks of the crush. More...


Joint media release: Sweet victory for sugarcane growers

27 September 2020 | Australian Government

A unique pilot project involving more than 100 canegrowers in North Queensland has delivered a solution to reduce the amount of nitrates that end up in the Great Barrier Reef by at least 15 per cent. More...


Smartcane BMP program on rise as farmers fight reef regulations

28 September 2020 | North Queensland Register

Cane farmers are voluntarily signing up to their industry's best management practice program in retaliation to heavy-handed reef regulations.

Keen to prove that they are environmental stewards, more than 100 growers in the Herbert River district have signed on to Canegrowers Smartcane BMP program. More...


Reef science institutions delivering contempt

1 October 2020 | North Queensland Register

Our Australian Reef science organisations had a hard time at the Senate Inquiry into the effects of agriculture on the Great Barrier Reef.

Some tough questions from Senators Gerard Rennick, Malcolm Roberts, Matthew Canavan and Susan McDonald yielded some surprising answers. More...


Checks and balances around Great Barrier Reef marine science and the 2017 Scientific Consensus Statement Forum


This forum is open to everyone and will directly address the checking of science in relation to the 2019 Reef Regulations Amendment Act.

It will provide presentations of information from both the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS) and Marine Geophysicist Dr Peter Ridd. Dr Ridd is an expert on the Reef and delivered a lecture tour in support of farmers in 2019. AIMS is the pre-eminent Reef research organisation based on the GBR. 

All sides of politics have been invited, and will make statements and comment on the matter of Reef Regulations and the checking of science.

Senator Gerard Rennick and Senator Malcolm Roberts will also deliver presentations.

View a video invitation



Investing in the agricultural sector and skills of the future

30 September 2020 | QFF

According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations, the world must increase agricultural output by 70 per cent by the year 2050 to sufficiently feed the growing global population. This presents new opportunities for Australian agriculture to expand and meet this increasing demand for food. More...


Rates rise garbage say Bundaberg farmers

30 September 2020 | Queensland Country Life

Bundaberg Regional Council has been told to 'stop treating farmers like garbage' after it imposed massive rate rises of up to 235 per cent on agricultural land.

Farmers from across the 6431 square kilometer shire have launched a community-wide petition in a bid to force Mayor Jack Dempsey to reverse the crippling and unprecedented rates rises. More...


Applications are open for CQ entrepreneurs to attend Agtech Innovation Mission

25 September 2020 | Queensland Country Life

There is an exciting opportunity for Central Queensland agtech entrepreneurs to take their idea or business to the next level in Brisbane.

Applications are now open for November's Agtech Innovation Mission, which is part the Central Highlands Development Corporation's AgFrontier: Regional Agtech Catalyst program. More...


Pilot program looks at nutrient status

29 September 2020 | Farm Weekly

A Device which would enable real-time information about a crop's nutrient status and generate actionable insights is in the works by CSBP Fertilisers.

The project was originally initiated to investigate a range of technology options including drone and satellite based remote sensing platforms, handheld sensors that take images at a canopy level and other handheld devices such as mid-infrared spectrometers and x-ray fluorescence meters. More...

Waterlogging resistance breakthrough

27 September 2020 | Farm Online

Although drought is the major threat in Australian cropping, flood and waterlogging is also a major player, especially in La Nina years like 2020-21 is likely to be.

So it has come as a boost to the industry that University of Oxford work, done partly in conjunction with the University of Sydney, has identified a particular enzyme within plants that can help it respond better to lower oxygen levels, such as found when the plant is waterlogged. More...


More rain required to lock in the winter crop potential

30 September 2020 | Farm Weekly

The climate outlook continues to suggest a wetter than average spring, but the month of September has been quite a mixed bag in terms of crop-making rainfall for Australian grain growers.

Broadly speaking New South Wales and Victoria have made grain in September, South Australia has consolidated production estimates, Queensland has gone backwards and so too has Western Australia. More...


Week Mill Crush (t) %CSS
Date STD Week STD
30 Sep 2020 Mossman 492,656
27 Sep 2020 Tableland 431,987 15.05 14.20
27 Sep 2020 Mulgrave 743,888 12.42 11.85 
27 Sep 2020 South Johnstone 745,636 12.48 12.13
25 Sep 2020 Tully 1,405,928 13.40 12.57
26 Sep 2020 Victoria 1,706,707 13.69 12.64
26 Sep 2020 Macknade 776,983
26 Sep 2020 Invicta 2,121,317 15.29 14.07
26 Sep 2020 Pioneer 975,187 15.58 14.57
26 Sep 2020 Kalamia 971,280 14.94 14.09
26 Sep 2020 Inkerman 1,042,001 15.29 14.37
26 Sep 2020 Proserpine 980,358 14.50
27 Sep 2020 Mackay 3,033,827 15.03
26 Sep 2020 Plane Creek 792,290 14.86 13.62
27 Sep 2020 Bundaberg 868,815 15.01 14.47
27 Sep 2020 Maryborough 337,075 14.31 14.05
Rocky Point
27 Sep 2020 Harwood 323,865 12.46 11.26
27 Sep 2020 Broadwater 397,137 12.83 11.62
27 Sep 2020 Condong 299,286 11.64 11.12



Weekly Rainfall Update

for 7 days to 9 am 29 September 2020

Rainfall Statistics

Week Ending 2 October 2020

Town Oct YTD
Mareeba 0.0 475.8
Cairns 0.0 1304.8
Innisfail 0.02344.1
Tully 0.03010.0
Ingham 0.01613.1
Ayr 0.01024.0
Proserpine 0.0778.2
Mackay 0.01209.8
Maryborough 0.0711.0
Ballina 0.01665.6
Yamba 0.01426.0

Wet La Nina spring, summer coming to Australia says Bureau of Meteorology

29 September 2020 | Farm Online

Get out your oilskin coats and umbrellas because the Bureau of Meteorology has declared a La Nina weather event has developed in the Pacific Ocean.

The announcement will send shivers through grainbelt areas in south-eastern Australia where many farmers are gearing up to harvest potentially bumper winter crops because La Nina events are associated with heavy rain. More...

La Nina 2020/21: A summer of flooding instead of fires?

30 September 2020 | Farm Online Weather

In January 2011, then Queensland premier Anna Bligh surveyed the damage in the tiny town of Grantham in Queensland's Lockyer Valley and dubbed it an "inland tsunami".

It was evocative language which vividly widespread devastation the likes of which few in living memory had experienced. And the Lockyer Valley was far from the only area which was drenched in the soggy summer of 2010/2011, in which 33 people in Queensland lost their lives. More...


Permits necessary: RFS calls start to bushfire season

2 October 2020 | The Land

Anyone wanting to light a fire anywhere in NSW must now have a permit.

The NSW Rural Fire Service yesterday called a start to the statutory Bush Fire Danger Period - it began in another 27 local government areas in August. More...




  7 October 2020 - Webinar: Weeds- their impact on cane production and their management. Current knowledge and gaps | SRA  

  8 October 2020 - Checks and balances around Great Barrier Reef marine science and the 2017 Scientific Consensus Statement Forum | PCGO

  8 October 2020 - Webinar: Accelerated workplace change in the face of COVID-19 | Safe Work Australia

21 October 2020 - Webinar: Nematodes in sugarcane- friends or foes, how much we know | SRA

23 October 2020 - Webinar: 5 Steps to prepare for harvest | QFF


Nominations open for Australian Biosecurity Awards

The search is on for the next round of biosecurity champions, with nominations now open for round two of the 2020 Australian Biosecurity Awards (ABAs).

Round two will include new categories to demonstrate the diversity of biosecurity and the different roles Australians can play.

For more information and to put in a nomination, visit