Farmers with clever, sustainable agriculture ideas can turn them into reality by applying for grants of up to $50,000 under Round three of the Smart Farms Small Grants program.

Member for Barker Tony Pasin said Australian farmers had a long history of early adoption of innovations.

“We want to hear about clever projects that improve natural resource management and benefit the environment, community and economy,” Mr Pasin said.

“Right now we’re all concerned about the farmers affected by this long and damaging drought.

“While our National Drought Plan will continue to address the current drought, farmers who are less affected are looking ahead because bad as the current drought is, agriculture has a bright future.

“Smart Farms Small Grants is one way our Government is encouraging the uptake of new knowledge and skills and increasing the capacity of farming, forestry and fishing communities to adopt best practice sustainable agriculture systems.

“Farmers have always looked after the land and through these grants we can give them a helping hand with that task, so I encourage them to apply,” Mr Pasin said.

Projects funded under the first two rounds included new soil acidity management techniques; virtual fencing to protect riparian habitat; improved orchard pollination and bee health using drone technology, as well as mentoring activities connecting farmers and students.

Up to $5 million will be provided under Round 3 of Smart Farms Small Grants, with funding of between $5,000 and $50,000 available. Projects may be delivered locally and regionally—and must be completed by 30 June 2022.

The Smart Farms program is the key agriculture initiative under phase two of the National Landcare Program.

Round 3 Smart Farms Small Grants applications are open until 19 December 2019. For more information and to apply, visit the Community Grants Hub website

Media Contact: Charlotte Edmunds 8531 2466