NEW SPEAKER HAS BEEN CONFIRMED - Kylie Gracey, Business Development Officer for the Northern Territory Cattlemen’s Association will focus on pastoral leases. This is currently very topical in the NT because following changes to the Pastoral Land Act, lessees can now apply for diversification permits. Register today!

Join us as we host the first Nuffield Australia National Conference in the Northern Territory.

The National Conference is the highlight of the Nuffield calendar. It’s a flagship event, offering a meeting point for Scholars, Investors and the broader agriculture industry.

In 2017, its NT’s turn, providing a real ‘destination’ conference!

The program will provide in-depth insights into agriculture and production in Northern Australia, as only Nuffield can provide.

  • Presentations from 2016 Nuffield Scholars, providing the latest global agricultural research
  • A focus on new, emerging and cutting-edge innovation and technologies
  • Announcement of the 2018 Nuffield Scholars
  • Knowledge and information exchange at networking functions.


The opportunity exists for your organisation to partner with Nuffield Australia for the National Conference to showcase the best of agriculture and in 2017, production in Northern Australia.

The event has continued to grow over the last five years, with registrations reaching 360 attendees in 2016 and a significant increase expected again in 2017.

Program and Speakers

There will be a strong program of diverse and vibrant speakers providing the most current and up-to-date insights in agriculture, and particularly Northern Australia.

1) Kylie Gracey, Business Development Officer for the Northern Territory Cattlemen’s Association (NTCA) will focus on pastoral leases at the conference. This is currently very topical in the NT. As a result of changes to the Pastoral Land Act, lessees can now apply for diversification permits.

2) WHERE ARE THEY NOW? Brian McAlpine, 2002 Scholar from Latham in WA, will feature in a new session titled, ‘Where are they now’? Brian is an experienced grain farmer, board member of CBH Group, past President of Liebe Group and past Councillor of the Dalwallinu Shire. He has completed a Masters of Business Administration and is a Graduate Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. He will tell his story since being awarded a scholarship

Among the 2016 Nuffield Scholar presentations are:

  • Adam Coffey, QLD: Commercial cattle production and management tactics for rangeland and other Northern areas
  • Angus Duddy, NSW: Can agriculture and mining can co-exist? If so, are there opportunities to tap into alternative energy sources and recycled water?
  • Daniel Richards, NT: International seafood and aquaculture production, technologies and market trends
  • Jan Vydra, VIC: Innovative ways to boost the yields and sustainability of fresh herb and salad leaf production
  • Randall Wilksch, SA: Why are there so few women in broad scale agriculture?
  • Ben Edser, QLD: How intensive livestock production operations can manage waste and whether their bio-products can be optimised

The event will open with the distinguished Awards Dinner on the first evening, announcing the 2018 Nuffield Scholars, the newest group of emerging leaders in Australian agriculture and agribusiness.

Tuesday 19 September – Annual Awards Dinner, at Darwin Convention Centre, from 6pm
Wednesday 20 September – Conference Day 1, at Darwin Convention Centre, from 8am
Wednesday 20 September – Cocktail reception, from 6.30pm
Thursday 21 September – Conference Day 2, at Darwin Convention Centre, from 8am
Thursday 21 September – Social evening at Mindil Beach Sunset Markets, from 6pm
Friday 22 – Saturday 23 September – Post Conference Tour, Darwin region

Thursday – Mindil Beach Sunset Markets

Following the formal close of the conference on Thursday, 21 September, delegates are encouraged to participate in a social evening at Mindil Beach Sunset Markets. Held every Thursday and Sunday night from April to October, these are Darwin's largest and most popular weekly markets with multitude of stalls offering international cuisine, arts, crafts and entertainment. You will enjoy a picnic dinner on the beach while watching the tropical sunset.

Regional Tour

The post-conference regional tour will stimulate agricultural enthusiasts who are keen to understand primary production in Northern Australia. There will be a focus on beef production, barramundi farming, the tropical fruits industry and even crocodiles! Visits include:

Tropical Primary Products

2015 Nuffield Scholar Han Shiong Siah is Farm Manager and Agronomist for Tropical Primary Products, a family-owned and operated business specialising in tropical fruit production. Han will showcase crops on the 220-ha property including mangoes, durians (largest durian plantation in Australia), jackfruits and pomelos, while other lesser-known tropical fruit also feature. They also have an active mango-breeding project, with their first commercial variety (TPP1) being widely available in green grocers and major Australian supermarket chains.

Humpty Doo Barramundi

As business owner of Humpty Doo Barramundi aquaculture, 2016 Nuffield Scholar Dan Richards will highlight the opportunities in developing premium quality, sustainably produced white fish to complement pink fish markets in Australia and overseas. Dan and his family have been pioneering the farming of barramundi from fingerling to five kilograms. This business is now distributing about 40,000 kg of fresh barramundi per week into domestic and export markets.

Coastal Plains Research Farm

The NT Department of Primary Industry and Resources (DPIR) will host a visit to Coastal Plains Research Farm (CPRF). There will be a focus on on-farm biosecurity and changes to water licensing requirements in the Darwin rural area. There are a number of active trials in the area of horticulture, including jackfruit seedling selection planting, a trial studying nitrogen nutrition in mango trees, research on Panama disease in bananas and also a trial focusing on the performance of different tropical grasses.

Jumping Crocodile Cruise

More than 80,000 Saltwater Crocodiles roam the waterways of Northern Australia, and on the Adelaide River, a “Jumping Crocodile Cruise” is a must for any visitor to the Northern Territory! On this tour, you will see territorial crocodiles at close range for great photo opportunities and also an array of birdlife. The tour guides are extremely knowledgeable as well as having a great sense of humour! .

Additional visits will also feature in the program

Places are limited so please book early to avoid disappointment


Book your flights!

The event commences from 6.00pm on Tuesday 19 September with the Annual Awards Dinner at Darwin Convention Centre. It concludes at 10.00pm on Saturday 23 September, following the regional tour final sunset dinner. Darwin Airport is approximately 12km from the City Centre, or 15 minutes in a taxi. Some hotels may have airport shuttle services.

Book your accommodation!

a) Oaks Elan Darwin Hotel

Nuffield Australia has arranged a group booking rate at Oaks Elan Darwin Hotel in Darwin’s CBD. Boasting a choice of stylish hotel rooms or self-contained 1 or 2 bedroom apartments. The hotel features an outdoor pool and well-equipped gymnasium.

Note: This hotel is 900m, or a 15-minute walk to the Darwin Convention Centre.

The promotional code for the discount is NAFS2017 and bookings can be arranged here

b) Vibe Hotel Darwin Waterfront

A second, more luxurious option is The Vibe Hotel, conveniently located next door to the Darwin Convention Centre on the Darwin Waterfront. It is a great destination for those who want to cool off with a swim, drink coffee with friends or enjoy a family picnic. This hotel provides dynamic pricing e.g. prices change online as demand changes.

The promotional code for the discount is TH9802236 and bookings can be arranged here

c) Other accommodation options

There are any number of hotel and accommodation options in Darwin, visit your favourite online booking site or contact your travel agent today.


Registrations have now opened. Register today by clicking here

Terms and Conditions

Cancellation refund policy: Before 15th August – 75% refund. Between 15th-30th August – 50% refund. After 1st September - no refund.

All events and functions must be pre-paid in advance.

Registrations must be pre-paid with a credit card, in Australian Dollars.

Bookings will be made on a first-come, first-serve basis. There are limitations on bookings, particularly for the regional tour.

Nuffield Australia will not be responsible for any medical expenses, loss or accidents incurred during the event.

Plan Your Visit

What to Pack – Dress Code

Awards Dinner: Territory Rig
  • Gentlemen: Trousers, long sleeved-shirt and tie
  • Ladies: Day dress/after five
Conference Days, Cocktail Function: Territory Informal
  • Gentlemen: Smart casual trousers, open neck shirt
  • Ladies: Smart casual
Regional Tour: Casual
  • Please bring casual wear, with good walking shoes for the farm visits.

Weather – Dry Season (May-October)

The dry season, from May until October, is characterised by warm, dry sunny days and cool nights. Temperatures typically range from 21.6– 31.8°C and humidity levels are much lower: around 60 – 65%. More information here.

Exploring the NT

For those wanting to explore the NT further, visit the Tourism Top End Visitor Information Centre here. They manage car rentals and can get the best vehicle to suit your needs, with UNLIMITED KILOMETRES in many instances, which may not be the case if booking through rental companies.


If you have any questions, please contact Nuffield Program Operations Manager Nicola Raymond by emailing here