Developed by CSIRO Plant Industry, GRAZPLAN has the potential to boost the country's rural production by more than $100 million annually. One of the tools in the GRAZPLAN family is GrassGro, a decision support system that evaluates pasture management options. A team of researchers led by Dr John Donnelly has developed GRAZPLAN. It is based on extensive research into Australian grazing systems. Its development ensures that the grazing industry gets full benefit from the investment in research. GRAZPLAN can assess the financial impact of applying the outputs and outcomes of important agricultural research in different districts, farming systems and paddocks. It incorporates the characteristics and priorities of management systems used on individual properties. GRAZPLAN helps graziers assess the impact of important management decisions. For a given property GRAZPLAN can evaluate:
Whether the property is better suited to cattle or sheep production and the optimum breed to select.
The optimum dates for joining breeding animals.
What pasture species and varieties will give the best production levels and return the most profit.
If supplementary feeding will be necessary, how much should be fed, for how long and to which animals.
The system, which runs on any IBM compatible personal computer, predicts the impact of management decisions on profitability. Several of GRAZPLAN's component tools can be used to guide the day-to-day management of farm animals or test the effects of changes in the farming system.