Herbert Cane Productivity Services Limited (HCPSL) is a non-for-profit organization established to provide agricultural technical services and support to the Herbert Sugarcane industry. The key focus of the company is to drive productivity and sustainability outcomes for the local industry.
Cane farmers from the Herbert cane growing region and the local miller (Wilmar) can be members of the company. The HCPSL Board is represented by its membership, with 3 grower and 3 miller members holding positions on the company board.
The HCPSL team consists of 2 technical service groups:
Core funded: Grower Services Team
This team delivers activities that are funded under membership service fee:
- Provision of clean seed through the HCPSL “Clean” seed program consisting of access to cane from the “Clean” Seed plots, tissue culture program and hot water treatment facilities. This activity is resource hungry and constitutes a significant component of the HCPSL annual budget.
HCPSL leases 3 farms in the Central Herbert, Lower Herbert and Stone River areas and has commercial arrangements with growers in the Ingham Line and Abergowrie areas to grow “Clean” Seed cane for members.
- Cane testing of material to be used for planting by growers for Ratoon Stunting Disease (RSD).
- Provision of basic crop agronomy advice.
- Provision of basic advice on pest and disease management.
- Provision of basic advice on fallow management.
- Provision of basic advice on herbicides and pesticides.
- Provision of variety management advice.
- Access to the HCPSL GPS basestation network.
- Laser levelling and dumpy level surveys.
- Access to services provided by the Hinchinbrook Community Feral Pig Management Program.
- Access to a biannual newsletter.
- Access to the HCPSL website.
As apart the core funding HCPSL also funds variety development activities in the district supporting the HCPSL Ratoon Variety Trials (RVT), SRA and Wilmar plant breeding programs.
Externally funded: Technical Services Team
This team work on the following externally funded projects:
- Soil tests for nutrients and pathogens (like Pachymetra and nematodes).
- Irrigation water quality testing.
- Farm specific- Nutrient management plans.
- Farm specific-Pest and weed management plans.
- Group and mass media extension activities like:
- Chemical use accreditation courses.
- Training courses (like Farming 4 Cash™ and Back to Basics workshops)
- Facebook site
- Electromagnetic soil mapping.
- Precision agriculture application maps.
- Drone mapping and other applications.
- Soil Health project activities.
- Harvesting development project activities.
- Environmental stewardship projects.
- Development activities associated with soil amendments, fertilisers, chemicals, etc.
Externally funded projects are funded by governments, SRA, the CRC for Soils, universities, private and private companies.
For more information concerning services offered by HCPSL please contact the Manager-
Lawrence Di Bella on 0448084252 or 47761808.