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Change to Goondiwindi GRDC Update due to COVID-19

The popular GRDC Grains Research Update in Goondiwindi will be temporarily replaced this year with events in Dalby and Narrabri due COVID-19 concerns. The change means regular Goondiwindi Update attendees like agronomist Mick Brosnan from B&W Rural, Mungindi and John Kerlin from Headington Hill, Pilton, will have to alter their traditional travel plans for March.
Photo: GRDC

Queensland grain growers will be offered valuable insights into how they can maximise on-farm profitability and minimise production losses as part of the 2021 Grains Research and Development Updates.

This year the annual Grains Research Updates will be held at Dalby on March 2 and Meandarra on March 3.

GRDC Grower Relations Manager – North, Richard Holzknecht, says growers, agronomists, researchers and industry stakeholders were advised the popular two-day Update event at Goondiwindi had been changed this year as a result of COVID-19 restrictions.

“To better manage the risks of COVID-19, the two-day Update at Goondiwindi has been split into two one-day events instead at Dalby and Narrabri in New South Wales (March 4),” he says.

“We know how important and popular the GRDC Updates are for staying informed of the latest research and development outcomes and as a networking opportunity for industry.

“This temporary change of location ensures face-to-face events can continue, even with reduced numbers. The Dalby and Narrabri events will both be live streamed free of charge to ensure no one misses out.”

Mr Holzknecht says GRDC was aware reduced venue capacity due to social distancing and potential travel restrictions were likely to impact on attendance numbers regardless of Update location this year.

“However, we really encourage those who can’t attend or are concerned about attending to register for live streaming, because that format enables them to ask questions, interact with speakers and hear questions from the audience,” he said.

“So, if you can’t make the face-to-face events I would highly recommend tuning in with clients or colleagues online.

“While the locations will be different, the 2021 Updates will still offer the same high quality, GRDC research insights and knowledge that plays such a pivotal role informing on-farm decision making for growers and agronomists.”

Topics on the agenda for the Dalby Updates include:

  • cereal pathology planning for 2021 with a focus on barley powdery mildew and stripe rust;
  • utilising satellites and other data sources for on-farm decision making;
  • amelioration of sodic soils;
  • identification of crop specific and varietal tolerations to sodicity;
  • optimising chickpea sowing and flowering dates for maximum yield;
  • the drivers for profitable sowing decisions.

Also on the agenda will be the latest information about:

  • fall armyworm;
  • results from comprehensive herbicide resistance surveys;
  • new knowledge on glyphosate resistance;
  • clethodim efficacy;
  • up-to-date research on the ecology, seed persistence and retention implications for management and harvest weed seed capture of key northern weeds such as feathertop Rhodes grass, barnyard grass, windmill grass and sow thistle.

The Meandarra Grains Research Update will also offer growers and advisers sessions on:

  • cereal pathology;
  • amelioration of sodic soils;
  • optimising chickpea sowing and flowering dates;
  • the latest weed ecology results for key northern weeds.

“Given this Update is likely to attract more growers we have also included sessions on new cereal varieties and how they behave on the western downs, as well as the latest insights into Ascochyta in chickpeas, and tips for cooling grain in storage and clever ways to control storage pests,” Mr Holzknecht says.

Queensland grain growers and advisers are also encouraged to join the live stream of the Narrabri GRDC Grains Research Update, which will also include a range of regionally relevant topics. Register for the Narrabri event.

For a detailed program of each Update event or to register, phone ICAN on 02 9482 4930 or email

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