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Know Before
You Sow

Always ask if the seller of your seed is a member of the ASF to ensure you Know Before You Sow 

Information Flyer 

Smart from the Start Checklist

 In This Month's Issue...                          

ASF Seed Business 2015 Convention & Seed Industry Training Day

ASF Code of Practice Logo Stickers for sale

ASF Pasture Seed Database 2015 now live

Latest News from ABCA

RIRDC Magazine 'Rural Diversity - Summer 2015' now available

RIRDC - Cotton Harvest Safety: check and check again

GRDC - Dial the hotline for grain storage advice

OGTR - Notification of licence application - Field trial of genetically modified cotton - CSIRO

Department of Agriculture redesign of cost recovery arrangements

The new-look has been launched

Agricultural commodities: March quarter 2015 now available

Plant Biosecurity CRC News now available - Autumn 2015

Consultation on proposals to streamline IP processes and support small business

Project Harvest Monthly Report - December 2014

Department of Agriculture Weekly Australian Climate, Water and Agricultural Update

Agricultural Bioscience International Conference 2015

ABARES Regional Outlook Conferences 2015

UC Davis European Plant Breeding Academy fourth class now open

 ASF Seed Business 2015 Convention & Seed Industry Training Day   

Tuesday 25 August 2015 - Thursday 27 August 2015 (inclusive) 
City Golf Club, Toowoomba, Queensland

The ASF is pleased to announce Seed Business 2015 is going to be held at the City Golf Club Toowoomba, Queensland.

There will be a social day on Monday 24th August with the Annual ASF Golf Day being held for those that wish to take part.

The ASF will once again be holding a Seed Industry Training Day on Tuesday 25 August 2015 similar to the introductory workshop held last year. We will also be holding more in-depth workshops during the training day on specific topics for those that may have attended last year and would like further training.

We are working on an agenda for the Training Day and the Convention and hope to have a draft available soon.

Registration will open late April along with accommodation information so you can book your flights and plan your itinerary.
If you have any questions please contact Alysha Lockley at the ASF on 02 6282 6822 or via email to

 ASF Code of Practice Logo Stickers for sale                                           

The ASF Code of Practice logo is now available in Stickers provided by Rowena Petrie from Royston Petrie Seeds. These can be used on bags and seed packets.

Quantity = 
1000 stickers per roll priced at $55 per roll plus GST and postage.

If you are interested in purchasing a roll of the Code of Practice stickers for use on bags or seed packets, please contact Rowena at Royston Petrie Seeds on 02 6372 7800 or via email to

 ASF Pasture Seed Database 2015 now live                                              

The ASF Pasture Seed Database has been updated for 2015 and is now live via the ASF website.

Click on the following website link to access the 2015 Pasture Seed Database

If you have any queries or comments about this database please contact the ASF.

 Latest News from ABCA                                                                          

The ASF is a member of the Agricultural Biotechnology Council of Australia (ABCA).

For the latest news on Agricultural Biotechnology including the following below, please click on the website link below.
  • ABCA has launched the second edition of The Official Australian Reference Guide to Agricultural Biotechnology and GM Crops - Click here for more information or to download this guide
  • AUS - 'Duty of Care' grounds of court appeal
  • AUS - Marsh vs Baxter - appeal being heard
  • USA - GM Yeast to make wine healthier and reduce hangovers
  • USA - Chinese policy hits hay growers
  • USA - GM Apple approved for commercial release
  • INT - Latest GM crop figures released
  • VIETNAM - GM Corn varieties approved for planting
  • GHANA - GM rice trial update
  • CHINA - TB-Resistant GM cow research
Source: Agricultural Biotechnology Council of Australia (ABCA) - Latest News (2015).

 RIRDC Magazine 'Rural Diversity - Summer 2015' now available           

The Rural Industries Research & Development Corporation (RIRDC) have issued its corporate magazine 'Rural Diversity - Summer 2015' edition for your information.

To download the Rural Diversity - Summer 2015 edition as a PDF document -
Click here

Source: Rural Industries Research & Development Corporation. 'Rural Diversity - Summer 2015'. 26/02/2015

 RIRDC - Cotton Harvest Safety: check and check again                         

The RIRDC have issued information on cotton harvest safety.

As cotton growers Australia-wide get ready for picking, they are being reminded to make safety a priority in the lead up to one of the most dangerous periods of the year.

Injury claims cost the cotton industry over $5 million each year, with the key risks of death or injury being motor vehicles (including utes, cars, quads, trucks) and electricity, according to a recent report by the Primary Industries Health and Safety Partnership (PIHSP).

Awareness of these risks is high at Jonathan Mengel’s property at Nangwee, near Dalby in the Darling Downs region of Queensland, who says it’s a sobering reminder to hear about incidents and near-misses through the media or at local events...Full text - Click here

Source: Rural Industries Research & Development Corporation. 'Cotton harvest safety: check and check again'. 26/03/2015
 GRDC - Dial the hotline for grain storage advice                                     
 A national stored grain information hotline has been established by the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) to support growers with all their grain storage investments and pest control practices.
Growers seeking advice can now phone 1800 weevil (1800 933 845) to be put in contact with their nearest grain storage specialist.

Chris Warrick, who heads up the GRDC's Grain Storage Extension Project, says "If growers are planning to store grain on their properties it needs to be done correctly. We recommend they seek advice from an expert via the hotline to make sure their storage systems and practices are adequate."

In Queensland, this specialist is Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) Senior Development Agronomist in the Postharvest Grain Protection Team Philip Burrill.
“The hub covers topics such as grain aeration, grain quality, storage facilities, grain storage economics, insect identification, fumigation, hygiene, structural treatments and insect and pest control." 
Mr Burrill said.
“The hub’s articles are produced with a focus on integrating the latest research and development findings from DAFF’s and other state’s postharvest grain protection teams into clear industry relevant advice.”
The grain storage information hub can be found at

Source: Queensland Government, Department of Agriculture and Fisheries. Media Release. 20/03/2015. Elise McKinna; Grains Research & Development Corporation. 

 OGTR - Notification of licence application - Field trial of genetically    
 modified cotton - CSIRO 

The Office of the Gene Technology Regulator (OGTR) has invited submissions on an application from CSIRO for a field of a genetically modified cotton with enhanced fibre quality.

Full Text -
Click here

Source: AgriFood Skills Australia. 'Daily Parliamentary Bulletin'. Email Alert 27/03/2015.

 Department of Agriculture redesign of cost recovery arrangements    

The Department of Agriculture (the department) is redesigning its cost recovery arrangements as part of a funding strategy for its biosecurity and export certification activities.

The aim is to streamline existing frameworks to address inequities, ensure all costs are recovered and reduce the complexity of the department’s fees and charges...

Full text -
Click here
Source: Department of Agriculture. 'Redesign of cost recovery arrangements media release'. March 2015.

 The new-look has been launched                              

The Department of Agriculture has launched its new website in improving its services for clients.

The new will give you:
  • a seamless experience across desktop, tablet and smartphones
  • our contact information on a single page
  • easy access to the information you’re after, with an improved search function.
You may notice some of the pages on the website will be moved to make it less cluttered and easier for you to find information. If your bookmarks or links refer to any of the following topics, they may break:
  • contact us
  • agriculture or farming
  • food
  • biosecurity
  • travelling to Australia
  • importing
  • exporting
  • animals
  • plants
  • pests.
If your links and bookmarks break, an error message will suggest a replacement. Please check to see if your bookmarks or links have broken as the new site launched early March 2015.

Source: Department of Agriculture. Email Alert. 24/02/2015. 

 Agricultural commodities: March quarter 2015 now available               

The Department of Agriculture, ABARES division have issued 'Agricultural commodities: March quarter 2015' for your information and consideration.

This report contains ABARES' latest outlook to 2019-2020 for Australia's major agricultural commodities.

For the full report and key findings -
Click here

Source: Department of Agriculture, ABARES. 'Agricultural commodities: March quarter 2015'. 03/03/2015.

 Plant Biosecurity CRC News now available - Autumn 2015                 

The Plant Biosecurity CRC has issued a newsletter for Autumn 2015 for your information and consideration.

Plant Biosecurity CRC Newsletter - Autumn 2015 - Click here
Source: AgriFood Skills Australia. 'Daily Parliamentary Bulletin'. Email Alert. 11/03/2015.

 Consultation on proposals to streamline IP processes and support    
 small business 

On 20 February IP Australia released a public consultation paper seeking stakeholder’s views on a range of proposed changes to the IP system.

A number of the proposals relate to plant breeder’s rights.

IP Australia is focused on aligning and streamlining processes, improving service delivery and reducing unnecessary delays to make administration of the IP system more efficient for users of the system and for IP Australia. Some of the processes for obtaining, maintaining and challenging the four IP rights are overly complex or do not balance the legitimate interests of all parties. This creates costs for businesses dealing with the IP system, particularly small businesses which face compliance costs disproportionate to their size. There are a number of processes that differ unnecessarily between the rights, are too burdensome or take too long to resolve.

To address issues and concerns about such processes, this public consultation process seeks your views on some proposals to improve how IP rights are managed.

Some of the proposals that particularly relate to PBR are:
  • 1. Renewals - provide PBR owners with a 6 month ‘grace’ period in which to pay renewal fees and no longer allow renewals to be paid more than 12 months before they are due
  • 3. Extensions of time – expand the number of periods that can be extended under the PBR Act, using the same types of extensions available for the other IP rights
  • 6. Official Journals – no longer issue the PBR Journal and improve the searching functions and timeliness of the PBR online database
  • 17. Unjustified threats of infringement – enable businesses to sue another party for making unjustified threats of infringement of PBR, in line with the other IP rights
  • 18. Ownership of PBR – clarify the legislation around multiple joint breeders and correcting errors in the name of PBR applicants.
IP Australia invites any interested person to make submissions by 7 April 2015.

More information about the proposals and how to make a submission is available on IP Australia’s website.

Source: Australian Government, IP Australia. Email Alert. 02/03/2015. 

 Project Harvest Monthly Report - December 2014                                  

There is an increasing need in Australia's horticulture industry to monitor and gauge consumer perception and behaviour in relation to fresh vegetables.

Colmar Brunton conducts monthly on-line tracking following specified vegetables, monthly trends analysis, and additional ad-hoc projects to assist in this understanding of consumers.

This project has been funded by HIA using vegetable industry levy and matched funds from the Australian Government.

To download the full report for December 2014 - Click here
Source: AUSVEG. 'Project Harvest December 2014 - vegetable consumer and market report'. 27/03/2015.

 Department of Agriculture Weekly Australian Climate, Water and        

 Agricultural Update 

The Australian Government Department of Agriculture has issued a 'Weekly Australian Climate, Water and Agricultural Update' for your information and consideration. 

This report contains information previously published in the Australian Climate and Agricultural Monthly Update however by combining the two updates it has allowed for improved access to up-to-date climate, water and commodity information in a single report. 

Report Information (26/3/15) - Click here

Source: Australian Government, Department of Agriculture. ''Weekly ABARES report'. 26/03/2015.

 Agricultural Bioscience International Conference 2015                          

7-9 September 2015, Melbourne VIC

The Agricultural Bioscience International Conference (ABIC) 2015 is the premier global meeting which promotes innovation in bioscience to ensure sustainable food, feed, fibre and fuel security as the climate changes.

The theme for ABIC 2015 is “New thinking, new discoveries and new applications”. In addition to building on past accomplishments to create a strong and sustainable industry, the program will celebrate innovation in agricultural biotechnology. ABIC 2015 will focus on three streams critical to the global application of biotechnology in agriculture.

Visit the website for more information at

 ABARES Regional Outlook Conferences 2015                                        

Department of Agriculture, ABARES Division is pleased to announce the dates and locations for its 2015 Regional Outlook conferences.

The one day conferences are an opportunity to hear from ABARES researchers, local producers, industry representatives and business people, and discuss issues relevant to your region.

Registration is free of charge but pre-conference enrolment is essential. Each conference program includes forecasts for key agricultural commodities, an economic overview, weather and climate trends, local challenges such as labour and water issues and case studies from innovative regional businesses.

For more information or to register your attendance please visit the website below:

ABARES Regional Outlook conferences



29 April

Devonport, Tasmania

10 June

Strathalbyn, South Australia

8 July

Darwin, Northern Territory

29 July

Rockhampton, Queensland

26 August

Geraldton, Western Australia

23 September

Hamilton, Victoria

28 October

Coffs Harbour, New South Wales​​

Source: Department of Agriculture. 'ABARES Regional Outlook conferences in 2015'. Email Alert. 31/03/2015.

 UC Davis European Plant Breeding Academy fourth class now open  

The UC Davis Plant Breeding Academy (PBA) is a premium professional certificate program designed to address the needs of plant breeders working in the private sector. The program is offered on a regular basis in the USA and Europe; with special program offers in Asia and Africa.

The fourth class of the European Plant Breeding Academy will start in October 2015 and is now open for registration. The 2015 program will maintain the core curriculum delivered in the previous classes and add modules to address the most recent development in plant breeding theory and practice, including an expanded section on use of genomic information in breeding, advanced experimental designs and GxE, to name a few.
Participants attend six 6-day sessions over approximately two years.

Location and dates:
Gent, Belgium                                  5-10 October 2015
Angers, France                                7-12 March 2016
Gatersleben, Germany                    27 June-2 July 2016
Enkhuizen, the Netherlands             3-8 October 2016
Almeria, Spain                                  6-11 March 2017
Davis, USA                                       26-30 June 2017
For more information on the UC Davis European Plant Breeding Academy or the Plant Breeding Academy in the United States visit or contact Joy Patterson at
Source: UC Davis Plant Breeding Academy. Email alert. 26/02/2015.

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Copyright © 2015. Australian Seed Federation Limited, All rights reserved.

Alysha Lockley | Business Services Manager | Australian Seed Federation
PO Box 3572 | MANUKA ACT 2603 | Tel 02 6282 6822 | Fax 02 6282 6922 | Mob 0410 403 307
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