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Research Program

The Australian Farm Institute conducts research projects to provide the evidence base for leading the farm policy discussions which ensure a viable future for the Australian agricultural community.

As the only independent agricultural policy research organisation in the country, the AFI fulfils a vital role. Since 2004, the Institute has been delivering on its purpose of carrying out research into policy issues that impact on farmers, and to promote solutions that maximise their economic and social well-being. The valued supporters of the Institute have contributed to many significant areas of policy development. 

The Institute’s research is overseen by a Research Advisory Committee consisting of experienced senior researchers and academics. The Committee assists in identifying strategic issues, and oversees the quality of research to ensure it is of the highest calibre and is conducted objectively.

Published 1 Apr 2016

Trade remains as crucial as ever to the agriculture sector in Australia. Many commodity sectors are strongly dependent on overseas markets and domestic producers continue to seek viable export options. The research, which is the subject of this report, seeks to identify enduring trends in overseas trade and provide guidance…

Published 1 Apr 2016

The research report represents 12 months of investigation into digital technologies and big data for agriculture. The research investigated how digital technologies being used in agriculture are generating large amounts of data sufficient for ‘big data’ analytics. The use of digital agriculture systems enables farmers to change from paddock and…

Published 1 Apr 2015

This report presents the results and recommendations of research recently undertaken by the Australian Farm Institute.This includes a review of national and international animal welfare science and policies. It also covers the current farm-animal welfare policy systems in Australia, including the main stakeholders and the principles which underpin this policy….

Published 1 Nov 2014

This research aims to assess Australian agriculture’s recent trade performance, in order to gain a perspective of how competitive Australian agricultural products are in international and domestic markets, and just as importantly to assist in identifying factors or policies that may assist Australian agriculture to become more competitive in the…

Published 1 Sep 2014

A review of available literature and data pertinent to agricultural extension both in Australia and internationally was carried out as part of the research. This was confined to the most recent publications and focused in particular on publications detailing approaches being adopted by major international agencies, and by the major…

Published 1 Sep 2014

This research involved a review of the various ways in which public-sector grains extension systems currently operate in different Australian jurisdictions. The research involved desktop reviews of the underlying policy rationales that underpin agricultural extension services and the stated strategies of major extension agencies, supplemented with structured interviews with key…

Published 1 Sep 2014

This sub-project involved both a desktop review of the main agricultural extension models that are utilised in selected overseas locations, as well as brief in-country visits to gain a clear understanding of how the particular extension model operates from the perspective of both practitioners and the target audience (farmers). The…

Published 1 Mar 2013

As has recently been observed for a range of different issues, agricultural statistical systems play a crucial role in informing policy and business decisions, and the absence of reliable statistics can result in considerable uncertainty and poor decision-making. The research report, Is counting farmers harder than counting sheep? A comparison…

Published 1 Mar 2012

This research shows that the available statistics estimating than transport only represents 4% of the total Australian agricultural output are a far cry from  reality. This research finds that from farm to foreign customer (delivered to the foreign port of entry of domestic central market), transport cost of Australia’s agricultural…
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