ESTABLISHING test beds to allow for the practical testing of technology for use in the agricultural sector is the latest building block in the state government's $7.6-million AgTech program.
AgTech test beds will be set up on state government-owned farms to conduct rigorous, replicable testing of new technologies as part of the development process.
Primary Industries and Regional Development Minister David Basham said expressions of interest were open to provide technology providers and the agriculture sector the opportunity to trial new products in a working farm setting.
"These AgTech test beds are the latest addition to the government AgTech demonstration farms at Loxton, Struan, Turretfield, Minnipa and Nuriootpa, and will support proof-of-concept assessment and validation of innovative AgTech solutions with commercial potential for SA primary production systems," he said.
"Commonly test beds are used in the development of technology, varying in nature from hands-on prototype development to intellectual property refinement in such fields as computer software development.
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"In relation to approved trials, the Department of Primary Industries and Regions will contribute time and expertise of technical and research staff; access to farm fields, paddocks and crops; and access to co-working space.
"Many farmers want to adopt new and emerging technology but the investment is a huge risk without being tested in SA conditions.
"Likewise, AgTech providers want to test their new technology in SA conditions and show farmers how easily adoptable it is.
"The AgTech test beds are designed to take that risk away from farmers and developers and are the next logical step at our demonstration farms.
"We are keen to see ideas come to light, be supported in development, get to market and be put into practical use by our farmers growing more food, and increasing their own profitability."
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