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Food Agility and ISC, a fully owned subsidiary of Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA), will invest up to $2.6m in a first round of collaborative research projects. They are calling for proposals from agtech companies partnering with Australian research organisations, to tackle three key opportunities:

  1. Real time animal identification and tracking
  2. Residues in livestock production – on-farm risk mitigation and automatic detection
  3. Using Genotyping for individual animal identification and to support provenance claims

The initiative will determine technology options to strengthen and enhance the Australian meat integrity system, which includes on-farm assurance (including food safety) and animal identification and traceability to protect Australian red meat from disease and underpin Australia’s global reputation for high-quality, clean, safe and natural red meat.

Food Agility CRC COO, David Wright, said the collaboration was developed as part of the CRC’s Mission Food for Life, a $10m initiative to deliver data-driven resilience in our food supply chains.

“The red meat sector has been incredibly resilient in the face of drought, fire, pandemic and geo-political barriers,” said Mr Wright.

“If we’ve learned anything during these last 12 months, it’s that data and digital technology have an important role to play in helping our supply chains respond, rebound and reinvent.”

ISC CEO, Jane Weatherley, said the Australian red meat industry already had a world-leading integrity system, but that constant improvement and evolution was required.

“The red meat and livestock industry has entered an era where tremendous opportunities can be captured through new digital technologies, data systems and analytics,” Ms Weatherley said.

“This is a crucial component of not only ensuring we continue to improve our current systems to meet the expectations of industry, government and our global consumers, but also to support industry achieve the target of doubling the value of red meat sales by 2030.

“Having an even more sophisticated and cohesive supply chain that is driven by information provided from new data and technology is the next important step on this journey.”

Mr Wright and Ms Weatherley said they were looking for research proposals that would get new proven tools and services into the hands of industry fast, with viable and scalable commercial pathways.

Applications close on Tuesday 24 November. For more information about criteria how to submit a proposal to receive up to two-thirds of project costs, visit the Food Agility website. Those seeking a technology or research partner to collaborate with can use the LinkedIn group to find their perfect partner.