Katherine Research Station the new agribusiness hub

STOP-IN: Minister Ken Vowles takes a tour of the Katherine Research Station and meets some of the hard-working staff.
STOP-IN: Minister Ken Vowles takes a tour of the Katherine Research Station and meets some of the hard-working staff. Contributed

IT IS important as the Minister for Primary Industry and Resources that I visit different regions in the Territory.

Earlier this month I took the opportunity to visit Katherine to meet with industry stakeholders and departmental staff at the Katherine Research Station and Member for Katherine Sandra Nelson.

This government's agribusiness focus will be on backing the hard work of the growers and producers in the Katherine region. We are supporting Katherine to continue growing as a logistics and agribusiness hub and a major inland port.

Katherine's proximity to Darwin and already established road and rail infrastructure provide significant potential to deliver produce quickly and profitably to various markets.

At my recent visit, I stopped in at the Katherine Research Station, as well as undertaking a tour of the Tropical Treasures Mango packing facility and farm.

It was great to be able to visit the Katherine Research Station and meet up with the hard-working department staff.

There are many trials our researchers are currently undertaking at the station and it's really interesting to see these trials come together.

This government will facilitate the development of new markets as well as deliver greater on-farm impact of research undertaken, which will be achieved through working closely with industry and departmental staff.

I am excited about the opportunity for further development of key horticulture crops in the region, such as mangoes and melons, the expansion of the sandalwood plantation and the potential for new crops in the region.

In the cropping area, we were able to see wet season trials on forage sorghum, upland rice, soy beans, burgundy bean in combination with cavalcade and also cassava.

The cassava is being grown as a possible dual-purpose crop, with the tubers harvested for starch and the tops for cattle feed. We also examined the pen trial area, which allows the researchers to conduct replicated detailed nutritional trials involving up to 150 head.

I am thoroughly enjoying being able to get out and about and visit regional Territory and this will continue to happen throughout the year.

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