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Get the good oil on sunflowers at GRDC workshops

GRDC and the Australian Sunflower Association will run workshops in Pittsworth and Gunnedah to share the latest research into agronomy and marketing insights with growers and advisers.
Photo: GRDC

Sunflower growers, agronomists and farm advisers will have an opportunity to hear from some of Australia’s leading crop management specialists at workshops being held in Queensland and northern New South Wales next month.

Presented by GRDC and the Australian Sunflower Association (ASA) the two workshops will offer the latest information on:

  • plant growth and development
  • agronomy
  • pests
  • weeds and disease
  • harvest
  • storage
  • marketing.

GRDC Grower Relations Manager – North, Richard Holzknecht, says the workshops will be held in Pittsworth (June 8) and in Gunnedah (June 15) and will also include a section on the shared experiences of growers and agronomists.

“This is an invaluable opportunity for sunflower growers and their advisers to hear the latest research and development from leading researchers and industry experts to help inform their decision making from paddock production right through to harvest and beyond,” he says.

Kevin Charlesworth, chair of the Australian Sunflower Association, says the sunflower industry has a positive future and attending the workshops will provide both experienced and future growers with insights into marketing profitable crops.

“There have been some significant developments in sunflower marketing in recent years and how growers can access these opportunities will be one of the key presentations at these workshops,” Mr Charlesworth says.

The workshops will be facilitated by Kerry McKenzie from PulseAg Consulting.

Mr McKenzie says the line-up of speakers for the two workshops has been designed to deliver farm-ready information to industry that can be used by growers and advisers as they prepare for this season’s harvest or planned next season’s crop.

“We have chosen the locations based on need, with the majority of sunflowers produced in the northern region being grown across the Darling Downs and throughout the Liverpool Plains, but these workshops are open to growers or would-be growers from anywhere,” he says.

Key presentations at the workshops will include:

  • Plant growth and development – Chris Haire, Barenbrug Australia
  • Agronomy – Loretta Serafin, NSW Department of Primary Industries.
  • New varieties
  • Weeds – Paul McIntosh, WeedSmart
  • Insects – Kerry McKenzie
  • Disease – Sue Thompson, formerly University of Southern Queensland
  • Storage and drying – Philip Burrill, Department of Agriculture and Fisheries Queensland
  • Harvesting – Kevin Charlesworth, ASA
  • Marketing – Mark Schmidt, Deacon Seeds
  • Grower/agronomist experience – Tony Lockrey, AMPS.

The Queensland workshop is scheduled for June 8 at the Pittsworth Function Centre, Pittsworth from 8.30am-5pm. Register for the event.

While the NSW workshop will be held on June 15 at the Gunnedah Services Club in Gunnedah from 8.30am-5pm. Register for the event.

More information: Kerry McKenzie, 0467 650 252,

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