Institute for Future Farming Systems – Bundaberg (IFFS)

Central Queensland University

The CQUniversity Institute for Future Farming Systems is a major contributor in the development of the agricultural industry in northern Australia. Its world-leading research program delivers practical solutions supporting the productivity, profitability and sustainability of the livestock, horticulture, cropping and poultry sectors. The Institute is internationally recognised and independently assessed as above world class for its specialist skills in the development of non-invasive and precision management technologies. Importantly, the Institute’s research is grounded in industry needs with staff working closely with industry partners and primary producers in Bundaberg (Australia’s largest vegetable producing region) and Rockhampton (Australia’s beef capital). The focus on delivering end-user impact is also supported by a specialist agriculture education and extension research team.

Organisation type
  • University Research Centre
  • Cooperative Research Centre – Partner Organisation
  • Queensland Government – Partner
Number of research staff
20-100 research staff
CQUniversity Australia, University Drive, Branyan, Bundaberg QLD 4702

Strengths and capabilities

  • Precision horticulture
  • Non|invasive sensor technologies
  • Precision livestock management
  • Improving poultry health and performance through microbiota
  • Animal behaviour and environmental interaction
  • Agricultural value chain management
  • Agricultural communication and extension
  • Automated data gathering & analysis technologies
  • Crop agronomy
  • Near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS)

Facilities and major equipment

  • CQ Innovation Research Precinct
  • labs, animal house & glass houses
  • Belmont Research Station - 3260ha grazing property
  • Access to Emerald and Longreach farms of Queensland Agricultural Training College

Lead researcher

  • Prof. Phil Brown—Leader of the Hinkler Agtech Initiative supporting horticulture industry start-ups with field research and end-user insights.
  • Dr. Amy Cosby—Transforming agriculture education programs by bringing agtech to the classroom to inspire careers in agriculture and improve teacher knowledge of farm practices.
  • Prof. Mark Trotter—Internationally recognized for his use of on-animal sensors for remote monitoring of livestock grazing location, behaviour and physical wellbeing.

Achievements of the centre

  • Handheld near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) for predicting crop yield and fruit ripeness
  • Individual animal monitoring technology for application in remote and large scale grazing systems
  • Enhancement of the PNG sweet potato value chain through improved agronomy, variety and distribution

Other centre in Queensland

Key science sectors

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