A rotation system based on rice and a legume crop appears highly suitable and profitable for the soil types in the tropical regions of Australia. Permanent raised-beds may provide a viable production system for the rice-based farming system in these regions. But many issues regarding suitable varieties, planting date, establishment technique, sowing rate, and fertiliser and irrigation requirements, remained unresolved.
The rice industry in NSW is looking for opportunities for quality rice production in northern Australia. Local industry groups are also keen to establish a commercially viable rice industry to provide speciality rices for niche markets. Rice is also considered a potential crop for the new farmlands to become available from the Ord irrigation expansion projects.
The major findings from this project provide guidance about variety selection that would have grain yield and quality advantages in potential regions and production systems. Results also serve as an agronomic package supported by industries which are economically and environmentally sound. The project created information about best pest, weed and disease management practices, and priorities for future research.