Impact Assessment of CRDC-QDAF project 'Strengthening the Central Highlands Cotton Production System'

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August, 2017

CRDC research partner, the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (QDAF), commissioned an impact assessment of the CRDC-supported project 'Strengthening the Central Highlands Cotton Production System' in 2017.

The research, which examined how to help Queensland’s Central Highlands cotton growers overcome climate challenges, identified that a key tactic may be for growers to plant considerably earlier than the traditional planting window in an effort to pull the boll-filling period forward into spring and early summer when weather conditions are at their most reliable. The research was put to the commercial test in 2016-17, with great success and as a result, it is anticipated that some 80 per cent of growers in the Central Highlands region will utilise the early-planting research outcomes to plant in August for the 2017-18 season. 

The impact analysis of the research found that the total investment into the project was $1.18 million, and the value of total economic benefits back to growers and the industry was $20.24 million – a benefit-cost ratio of approximately 17.1 to 1.