The Victorian Coalition Government will invest more than $1 million to support the development of a world-class wheat and canola breeding facility and trial site in Western Victoria.
During a visit to Horsham, Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional and Rural Development Peter Ryan said the planned $14 million Australian Breeding Centre would be established by Bayer CropScience at Longerenong College near Horsham.
“This centre will be the only one of its kind in Australia, bringing a new level of expertise to the region and creating highly specialised development opportunities for Longerenong college students,” Mr Ryan said
“Up to 20 new life sciences jobs are expected to be created as a result of the development and once completed the centre will build on Horsham’s reputation as a leading grain research area in Southern Australia.”
Mr Ryan said the Coalition Government would provide $1.24 million to the Horsham Rural City Council to improve road access to the site.
“Our funding will support increased traffic volumes by improving access to the centre’s trial sites and breeding station through upgrades to Molyneaux and Tuckers Roads and College Drive,” Mr Ryan said.
“Providing safe all-weather access to the Longerenong site is critical for the sustainable and effective operation of the breeding station.”
Minister for Technology Gordon Rich-Phillips said the centre would provide a significant boost to the area and Victoria’s agricultural biotechnology sector capability more broadly.
“This investment in Victoria by Bayer CropScience highlights the strength of our plant biotechnology capabilities and skills base,” Mr Rich-Phillips said.
“The project is also a great example of government collaborating with private industry to deliver strong partnerships for growth.
“The development includes new laboratory and glasshouse facilities at Longerenong and will focus on delivering improvements in oilseed and wheat breeding to increase crop performance, to benefit not only Australian, but global farmers.”
Media contact: Clare Siddins 0429 507 541
Peter Ryan MLA
Member for Gippsland South | Deputy Premier
Minister for State Development | Minister for Regional and Rural Development