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Michael Straight – Research Manager leaving FAR Australia

20 August 2020

Michael Straight will be leaving FAR Australia after six and half years of service to the organisation as Research Manager at the Mulwala office in NSW. After moving from New Zealand in January 2014 Michael took the lead of FAR Australia’s projects in the border region in collaboration with the Riverine Plains farming group. Over the past six years Michael has successfully managed the regional component of the GRDC funded Stubbles Initiative research programme placed in the region in collaboration with the farming group, as well as a government funded initiative monitoring nitrous oxide emissions from arable cropping under the Action on the Ground element of the Carbon Farming Initiative. Both projects involved Michael working with the local farming community in order to set up large scale research, covering various crop types and stubble management techniques. In 2016, Michael was instrumental in establishing the Riverine Research Centre (RRC), again in collaboration with the Riverine Plains farming group. Using the research centre as a platform, Michael managed research projects with La Trobe University on the performance of early sown wheat and the regional component of the GRDC National Frost Initiative led by DPIRD in WA. The successful management of these research programmes assisted in giving both national and regional projects a local focus and greater relevance to cropping farmers of southern NSW and NE Victoria. Michael’s diligence and hard work on behalf of cropping farmers is reflected in the high esteem with which he is regarded by leading growers in the NSW/VIC border region.

On behalf of the FAR Australia staff and board, I would like to thank Michael and his family for the input made to our organisation. In the period of his employment FAR Australia has grown to take an increasingly important role in agricultural research and extension, none of which would have been achieved without his input to the organisation.

Michael will finish with FAR Australia on Friday 21st August. The FAR team will be sorry to see him go and wish him, his wife Kate and their three children all the best fortunes for their future life in Ireland.

The FAR Australia office at Mulwala will now be led by, Research Manager Ben Morris and Field Research Officer Tom Price who both joined the organisation earlier in the year.

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