On Tuesday 15th October FarmLink Research hosted a group of Argentinian farmers who were representing a farming systems group, Regional Consortiums of Agricultural Experimentation (CREA). CREA is the mother organisation of about 200 CREA groups throughout Argentina, divided into 18 different ecological and productive regions. The objective of the organisation is to promote technological and managerial development of its members.
The CREA group were very interested in finding out more about how to manage Ryegrass and its resistance to Glyphosate. Ryegrass resistance is a major problem in the southern regions of Argentina, the visitors showed keen interest in the crop sequencing trial at Eurongilly and inspecting Ryegrass numbers amongst the different plot crop sequences and herbicide treatments.
Most of the CREA group have grown Canola but with not alot of success. The major issue identified was knowing the optimum time to cut Canola as well as matching this with available machinery/contractors. Much discussion was generated around managing trash and improving yields.
The fact that early grazing of crops by sheep with no impact to yield and minimal impact to soil structure was new information to the group and after visiting the Water Use Efficiency trial site south of Temora some members of the group are keen to reproduce this trial in their homeland with cattle.
The breeding objectives for a poll hereford stud north of Temora was also a focus for the group as well as joining percentages and marketing.
Over the last 20 years there has been massive changes in the major export commodities for Argentina, from being the world's leading wheat exporter to now being unable to grow enough wheat to make their own bread. The CREA group visited our region with open eyes and great interest in our research and farming practices.