Agriculture-Science hub moves its QLD location

A Queensland based research station will move its location from Kairi to Mareeba for about seven million dollars.

The Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation’s (DEEDI) Kairi Research Station will move to Mareeba in the Tablelands Region, with funding of $6.95 million supplied from the auction of the former site.

DEEDI sold 209 hectares while retaining 26 hectares of the original land.

The move stems from the department's 'Fresh Approach' initiative of 2008, which included the restructure of its major research facilities so the state's primary industries could reach their combined economic potential of $34 billion by 2020.

Minister for Agriculture, Food and Regional Economies, Tim Mulherin said the opening facility will focus on research, development and extension, education and training.

“Construction is close to completion and staff are preparing to move into the building by the end of the year,” Mr Mulherin said.

In regards to staff, the hub is expected to attract and retain key staff, as well as offer retraining to staff relocating from Kairi to Mareeba without forcing anyone out.

Mr Mulherin said DEEDI is working with the Australian Agriculture College Corporation (AACC) to develop an ‘extension through training’ framework allowing producers to gain skill recognition.

“Much of this training will be delivered from the Mareeba Hub in a joint collaboration with the AACC,” he said.

According to Mr Mulherin, the AACC will deliver practical field training modules from the Walkamin Research Facility, at which DEEDI has been consolidating research onto one site.

Mr Mulherin said the advantages in brining together the regional scientific capacity in one location in the Tablelands will be the interactions between scientists, researchers, extension officers, teachers and students.

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