Esperance Agtech boosted with $90k grant

The Esperance region have taken out more than $90,000 worth of state government grants designed to stimulate innovation and adoption of the latest in agricultural technology.

Among those successful in the latest round of 'Internet of Things DecisionAg' grants, announced on April 10, were the South East Premium Wheatgrowers Association, the Lake Grace Development Association and the Esperance Senior High School.

The $582,833 worth of funding is set to assist eight grower groups and five secondary schools across WA to trial internet-based technologies and systems to collate, store and analyse data.

Initiatives include using remote sensors to collect weather and soil moisture conditions, investigating Wi-Fi repeaters to extend internet coverage and establishing Smart Farming sites.

The region's Wheatgrowers Association plan to utilise their $39,770 grant to purchase on-farm sensors, whilst the Lake Grace Development Association are expected to purchase a $45,000 Farm-wide Wi-Fi Network.

The Esperance Farm Training Centre will put their $5,461 grant towards AgTech Infrastructure Solutions.

WA Agriculture and Food Minister Alannah MacTiernan said the initiative was one that would help the state's agribusinesses remain at the forefront of technological advancements in an ever-changing market.

"Agtech is an essential component of modern business and the McGowan Government is committed to ensuring our regions are well-equipped with the right infrastructure and support to optimise its potential and give WA agribusinesses a competitive edge," she said.

"The IoT [Internet of Things] program will encourage and accelerate new approaches to digital connectivity, agtech apps and devices and data analytics.

"It complements a range of other McGowan Government programs driving new technology innovations in WA, including the Digital Farm Grants program aimed at delivering high-quality, reliable broadband services to agricultural enterprises and regional communities."