Media Release

Calling on Australia’s young rural innovators and scientists

2 October 2013

Innovative young Australians can now apply for grants of up to $22,000 across a range of categories in the agriculture, fisheries, forestry, food and natural resource management sectors.

Open to Australians aged 18 to 35 years, the Science and Innovation Awards for Young People in Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry offer grants to assist in keeping Australia’s agricultural industries sustainable, competitive and innovative.

In launching this year’s awards, newly appointed Minister for Agriculture, Barnaby Joyce, praised the commitment of young Australians to portfolio industries.

‘From 18–year–old Hugh McKay unveiling the world’s first combined harvester at the National Agricultural Society Show in 1885, to becoming the first country in the world to supply penicillin freely to civilians during the Second World War, Australia has remained a world renowned innovator in agriculture and science,’ Mr Joyce said.

‘But if we are to continue to be at the forefront of quality we need to foster ongoing innovation.’

There are a number of industry category awards available to applicants in the 2014 round – supported by their associated research and development corporations – including red meat processing, pork, wool, cotton, viticulture and oenology, dairy, fisheries and aquaculture, grains, meat and livestock, new and emerging rural industries and biosecurity.

The awards commenced in 2001 and more than 180 young Australians have benefited from a grant, with successful recipients using their funding for a range of activities including study, training and development, research projects, industry visits or conferences and workshops.

Additional funding is also available for one individual through the Minister for Agriculture Award, which is open to recipients of the industry category awards and subject to an additional application and assessment process, allowing the recipient to further develop their research project.

Applications for the 2014 Science and Innovation Awards close on Friday 8 November 2013.

For further information and application forms visit the Department of Agriculture website or email Science Awards.