MSF Sugar is offering cane growers and industry stakeholders an opportunity to see first-hand the results of water efficiency work it is delivering on its Tableland farms.
The MSF Sugar Drip Irrigation Farm Walk is a collaboration between MSF Sugar and Netafim– a global leader in smart drip and micro-irrigation solutions and supplier of the irrigation infrastructure being used.
The field day will showcase the various stages of developing a sub-surface drip irrigation system, from installing a new system to harvest results of a crop grown under sub-surface irrigation.
MSF Sugar Tableland Farms Irrigation Supervisor Aaron Moore said drip irrigation was by far the better option for irrigating cane, subject to suitable soil types and the environment.
“With mounting pressure on our finite water resources across farming in general, the need for growers to use water more efficiently has never been greater,” Mr Moore said.
“Growers chase yields but in order to best utilise the water that is available to us, we need to be looking at more efficient methods of applying irrigation.”
Sugarcane in the Tableland region has been traditionally irrigated using overhead or flood irrigation methods.
The field day will be held at MSF Sugar’s flagship sub-surface drip irrigation project that has re-developed the Mousa Farm on Springmount Road, Arriga.
Following an information session until 10.30am, guests will be invited to join two farm tours.
Mr Moore said the harvest results from the plant cane and first ratoon crop grown under sub-surface drip irrigation were promising.
“Our first cane grown under sub-surface drip irrigation is currently being harvested, and early results are showing a yield of 146 tonnes/hectare, using 7 megalitres/ha of irrigation,” Mr Moore said.
“This gives us a water use efficiency of 12.6T/ML which compares favourably with our best results of 8.1T/ML using flood irrigation on our farms to date.”
Netafim Business Development Manager Peter Durand said Netafim was looking forward to meeting and speaking with growers.
“Netafim is proud to be continuing our ongoing work with MSF Sugar to explore and maximise the benefits of drip irrigation in commercial growing of sugarcane,” Mr Durand said.
The field day will be held on Thursday 26 October at 1631 Springmount Road, Arriga from 8.30am.
Staff from MSF Sugar and Netafim will be available to answer questions.