Government takes counting sheep to the next level

By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Thursday, 29 October, 2015

Government takes counting sheep to the next level

The federal government has allocated $490,000 in funding towards a project to develop a cloud-based sheep data management system.

The University of New England (UNE) is collaborating with the Cooperative Research Centre for Sheep Industry Innovation to help improve the collection and use of sheep-related data.

It will be an automated system that integrates data capture, storage sharing and analysis, and will aim to facilitate machine-to-machine transfer and smart analysis of large volumes of data.

The Data-to-Decision-to-Dollars project has a budget of nearly $1 million. Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce said the project has significant potential to help producers move to the digital age.

“Good information is critical to making good decisions on the farm, and this project will give sheep producers better data on each member of their flock. This will facilitate better on-farm decision-making and contribute to better care of the flock, improved productivity and faster genetic gain, which will drive better profits back to the farmgate,” he said.

“While this trial will focus on sheep, benefits should also flow through to other livestock industries, particularly for cattle.”

Joyce said the government has also committed to investing $200 million between now and mid-2022 on the Rural R&D for Profit program.

Image courtesy of geir tønnessen under CC

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