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New tech needed to boost rice growing water productivity by 75%



AgriFutures Rice Program Open Innovation Challenge closes midnight 13 October 2020

AgriFutures Rice Program is reaching out to innovators across the country in search of new technologies to boost water productivity in rice growing by 75 percent within five years.

With sustained drought and reduced water allocations leading to one of Australia’s smallest annual rice harvests on record, the AgriFutures Rice Program Open Innovation Challenge presents a novel opportunity for creative thinkers to contribute their ideas, wherever they are based and regardless of their industry.

The Challenge is hosted on the Brightidea platform, an online system popular with many of the world’s most innovative companies, such as Bayer, Cisco, Dell and MasterCard.

Impact Innovation, as the premier partner for Brightidea in the APAC region, has enabled AgriFutures Rice Program to open up the Challenge to anyone with an existing or emerging technologies that will help the rice industry significantly increase its dollar return per megalitre ($/ML) of water.

“The Australian rice industry needs transformative yet competitive and sustainable solutions, so the Challenge welcomes input not just from the rice industry but also from other industries, like remote sensing technologies, water management strategies and plant genetics,” said Impact Innovation’s managing director, Brian Ruddle.

“Crowdsourcing ideas using Brightidea’s online engagement tools means tapping into the brain power of researchers, R&D practitioners, engineers, environmental entrepreneurs and farmers all over the country and across many different industries,” Mr Ruddle said.

Selected technologies or solutions may attract funding through the rice research, development and extension program, with the ultimate objective being industry-wide adoption.

The Challenge is open until midnight (AEDT) Tuesday, 13 October 2020, with a shortlist of solutions to be presented to the AgriFutures Rice Program Advisory Panel in November.

To register for the Challenge and submit innovative ideas, visit https://agrifutures.brightidea.com/WaterProductivityChallenge.

Ends. 

Media enquiries:

Brian Ruddle, Impact Innovation Group & chair of the AgriFutures Australia Emerging Industries Panel b.ruddle@impactinnovation.com tel. +61 1300 299 505

RICE FACTS & FIGURES

- Rice is grown in more than 100 countries and sustains two-thirds of the world’s population.

- Australian rice growing regions are concentrated in the Murrumbidgee and Murray valleys of southern New South Wales, with smaller areas in Northern Victoria and Far North Queensland.

- 80% of rice produced in Australia is exported to the Middle East, Papua New Guinea, Japan and other Asian and Pacific countries.

- Australian-grown rice uses 50% less water than the global average.


@AgriFuturesAU, @Impactinnov, @Brightidea, #rice, #innovation, #waterproductivity