Interactive web-based material to support FMS : Farm Management Systems for the Sugar Cane Industry, sub-program 1
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An interactive web-based toolset was developed to support the Australian sugar industry’s Farm Management System (FMS) program. Primary issues that were addressed in this sub-program included the provision of a system to increase ease of access to FMS resources, building a channel for the dissemination of new information to growers, and facilitating interactive support for customisation of industry wide requirements to local circumstances. The toolset developed by this sub-program incorporates a database of useful information with a linked search tool plus a series of templates and guides to help cane growers to establish their own FMS. The content of this toolset and major outputs from this project can be viewed from the www.srdc.gov.au website, following the FMS links. The framework and initial content of the toolset were developed by Agrecon in collaboration with two FMS pilot projects, in the Central and Burdekin regions, plus a range of other grower, industry and government representatives with valuable input provided by the FMS Steering Committee. The framework was developed to enable other information types such as the indicators and auditing options still being developed under other FMS sub-programs to be readily incorporated. The linked search tool allows growers to find information relevant to their particular region, management issue and information type. The database includes information for sugar producers on key legislation, codes of practice, best management practices, risks and other general guides. More than 300 records were created to establish the database, many with multiple region-specific versions of fact sheets including a simple overview of implications for cane growers and links for users requiring more detailed information. An integrated guide to producing a FMS was based on the fundamental requirements of the international standard for environmental management systems, ISO14001. This includes information and templates for mapping, record keeping, self-assessment review, risk analysis, action plans, report production and monitoring as discrete but linked stages in the FMS process. In addition to the above information that can be freely downloaded, Agrecon has also incorporated the framework and associated industry specific information within a sugarcane module under the umbrella of their broader AgrePRECISE online system. This subscription service, which will be offered free during the FMS Training sub-program to help cane growers establish their FMS, links the above information within a secure account to other databases and interactive tools. This centralised and standardised information management system will further assist growers to more rapidly establish and maintain their FMS. This resource is expected to provide valuable and consistent information to assist Australian cane producers to establish and maintain a FMS. Its dynamic web-based format of delivery allows for continuous improvement and maintenance as the industry progresses along the path of improved environmental and economic sustainability. The structure of the database, search tool and record display format makes this system very easy to maintain by non-technical personnel via a user-friendly data base editing tool. Agrecon has volunteered to continue to improve and add to the content of the FMS information system throughout the duration of the FMS program using feedback from the industry. In a similar vein, Agrecon is willing to maintain and add to the final list of “Indicators” being developed during sub-program FMS002 and to ensure that these are linked to relevant risk and BMP material as appropriate. It may also be appropriate to add the list of “Auditing options” being developed in sub- program FMS004 as ongoing inputs to this FMS database, including fact sheets with links to supporting resources.
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Beattie, R; Ensbey, N; Aitken, R; McGuire, P; Garside, A (2006)The New South Wales Sugar Milling Co-operative’s (NSWSMC) move to whole cane harvesting for cogeneration will increase in-field haulout traffic by 30% with the potential for yield decline due to increased soil compaction. ...
Murray, C (BSES, 2006)Growers throughout the Australian sugar industry are implementing aspects of the 'new farming system', which includes controlled-traffic (using either dual-row, single-row, or wide-chute single-row plantings), legume ...
Helping sugarcane farmers integrate electronic recording systems into their farming business : SRDC Grower Group Innovation Project final report Reinaudo, M (2012)The use of timely and accurate records can improve farm profitability through the evaluation of past, current and future performance of the business. Electronic farm management records are relatively new for the sugar ...