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Randall Wilksch. 2016 Scholarship winner

Randall Wilksch. 2016 Scholarship winner

Randall Wilksch, from Yeelanna in South Australia, has received a Nuffield Australia Farming Scholarship supported by the Grains Research and Development Corporation (southern region).

He will study two topics: broad scale spraying systems used in grain production, with a particular focus on improving the efficiency of self-propelled (SP) sprayers; and advocating for agriculture positively through social media.

As a partner in his family’s 3650-hectare grain production enterprise (on owned and leased land), Randall’s key responsibility is managing spraying and crop protection for wheat, canola, faba bean, lentil, lupin and barley plantings.

“I plan to look at more cost effective, broad scale spraying methods using high-capacity SP units that can cover bigger areas faster without losing efficacy,” he says.

“I also wish to promote agriculture to an urban audience that is increasingly disconnected from production of food and fibre.”

“There are opportunities to learn how to get the best out of expensive SP systems to complete our spraying operations in a timely, safe and effective manner.

“It is also important that we make known to the public that broad scale agriculture production systems are healthy and safe, and not be influenced by emotive, unsubstantiated claims.”

Randall plans to investigate boom turbulence, weed science, sprayer manufacture and alternative broad scale spraying systems used in other countries when he visits Canada, Europe, the United States and parts of Australia through his scholarship.

The Grains Research and Development Corporation (southern region) is pleased to support Randall Wilksch as a 2016 Nuffield Scholar. The organisation said it’s a valuable investment in the growth of agriculture in South Australia alongside Nuffield Australia, which is at the forefront of developing future industry leaders.

Nuffield Australia chief executive officer Jim Geltch said Nuffield now boasted more than 350 scholars in Australia who, through their scholarship global study tours, had significant insight into global agricultural production systems.

“We are building capacity for the nation’s food and fibre industries to be world leaders in the adoption of technology, best practice and innovation,” he said.

“Nuffield Scholars are influencing industry and community changes, resulting in agricultural productivity increases and economic development for rural communities.

“The Nuffield experience adds new dimensions to the way scholars think about the economic, environmental and social aspects of global food production.

“Engagement and investment in capacity building and talent development in agriculture is critical as the global population continues to escalate and the amount of land available for food production shrinks.”

Scholars undertake a 16-week program of group and individual travel.

Global Focus Program tours will visit several countries in March/April or June/July 2016, including New Zealand, Brazil, the United States of America, Mexico, the United Kingdom, South Africa, Kenya, Eastern Europe, Singapore, India, Qatar, Turkey, France, the Philippines, China, Canada or Ireland (itineraries will vary between groups).

Applications for Nuffield Australia Farming Scholarships open in April each year to Australian primary producers and managers who seek to research a topic important to them and to Australian agriculture.

Randall is available to talk about his planned travel and can be contacted on:

Phone: 0427 865 051 Email:

Media contact:
Justine Mackay, Cox Inall Communications
P: 0435 325 954; E:

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