5 Oct 2012

More funding approved for pasture research

7:00 am on 5 October 2012

The Government has approved funding for a new research programme to develop improved pasture and forage crops.

It's committing more than $7 million over six years to the project through the primary growth partnership.

PGG Wrightson Seeds is leading a seed and nutritional technology development programme, working with a number of research organisations.

It aims to develop better pasture and forage crop technologies, to improving feed conversion efficiency for livestock, as well as reducing environmental challenges such as soil erosion and drought stress.

Research and development manager Derek Woodfield said there are five main parts to the programme, aimed at providing farmers with the means to grow better pasture and crops so they can boost livestock production.

He said that includes getting better pasture and crop establishment to reduce pasture failures and providing new forage supplementary crops to the East Coast of New Zealand which is constrained by dry summers which limit production.

Dr Woodfield said other focuses include technology that can improve pasture persistence and productivity or that can improve the way in which that pasture is converted into animal product.