’Scientists from the International Rice Research Institute visited Finley recently.
Their aim was to find a better extension model for up-skilling the next generation of rice extension professionals in the Philippines to enable improved delivery and communication to rice farmers.
The seven scientists visited rice farmer and Rice Research Committee chairman Ian Mason to learn how he made his decisions to grow rice.
Finley agricultural consultant and facilitator of farmer cropping system discussion groups, John Lacy, said the scientists were interested in the difference between public and private extension in Australia and how they interacted with research and industry.
Mr Lacy said the scientists were keen to learn about the best cropping practices which identified the highest yielding and profitable practices.
Mr Mason told the group he had grown only 45ha of rice this season instead of the usual 250ha.
He took the group through his different crops and discussed how he made decisions regarding kilograms per hectare and the processes used to plant the crops.
When asked why more farmers had not sown rice ahead of rain, Mr Mason said farmers had different attitudes to risk.
Mr Mason is hoping for future announcements of increased allocations so he will not have to buy water, and wants to delay permanent water until mid-December.
The International Rice Research Institute aims to reduce poverty and hunger, improve the health of rice farmers and consumers, and ensure environmental sustainability of rice farming.