Understanding cotton growers is naturally vital to CRDC, and the annual grower survey is one of the methods to gain this understanding. The CRDC Grower Survey also gives growers the opportunity to compare their practices to others and gain a greater insight into all aspects of how others view the industry and manage their farms.
CRDC has made the surveying process quick and simple. The format has been shortened and the survey is completed on-line or via a phone call with the research team. Better still are the rewards more broadly for industry, as growers have the opportunity, through their responses, to influence research and extension direction and focus.
“The information we collect via the survey is enormously helpful in helping us to: measure on-farm practices and practice change; measure the impact of our RD&E investments; and ensure that CRDC and CottonInfo are continuing to meet the needs of our growers,” says CRDC Communications Manager Ruth Redfern.
“It allows us to see growers’ views on research, development and extension. This information helps to inform CRDC about the benefits of the research it invests in. We can also track and quantify change in industry practice by comparing data from 20 years of surveys.”
Surveys include core questions and focus areas to investigate specific aspects of the farming system. This year the focus is on water, energy, nutrition and soil, IPM, NRM, weeds and disease controls, research trials, community and industry sentiment.
The way the survey results are delivered has also changed. Further to the PDF report, an on-line, interactive ‘digital dashboard’ introduced in 2018 has been well received. It has received hundreds of views since going live on CRDC’s website in early February, with particular interest from growers comparing the regional data. Previous editions can be found online at CRDC’s electronic library Inside Cotton.
Growers are currently being emailed an invitation to participate in the survey.