Program to Drive Innovation in Agriculture

Farmers, scientists and researchers tackling the big issues affecting the agriculture sector will be supported with a $500,000 fellowships program.

Launching the new VESKI Sustainable Agriculture Fellowship Program in the Goulburn Valley today, Minister for Agriculture, Jaala Pulford, urged farmers, researchers and industry groups to take advantage of the program.

The program encourages collaboration between community, philanthropic organisations, industry and government to develop innovative ideas to support agriculture industries as they transition to future markets.

It will prioritise work tailored to local conditions and targeting emerging international markets for food, fibre and agricultural services.

VESKI is a charitable institution, established by the Victorian Government in 2004, that help Victoria to respond to society’s most challenging issues by bringing world leading scientists and researchers to the state.

Initially, two fellowships will be funded through a philanthropic gift of $500,000 from the John T Reid Charitable Trust with plans of investing $4 million over five years in another 12 fellowships.

Since 2004, VESKI has awarded 20 innovation fellowships worth more than $4 million, delivering a return on investment in excess of $45 million in funding drawn to Victoria for research and infrastructure

Expressions of interest are sought from potential Victorian industry partners, research organisations and other potential collaborators.

Quotes attributable to the Minister for Agriculture, Jaala Pulford

“Investment, innovation and collaboration are critical if we want to keep growing our food and fibre sector and create jobs.”

“Through its innovative fellowship programs, VESKI continues to help Victoria manage environmental, health, medicine and technology challenges.”

“This is a unique opportunity for Victorian farmers, researchers, government and industry groups to work together to develop solutions and drive prosperity across the agriculture sector.”

5th March 2015

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