Focussed on improving the Mallee broadacre farming sector

With decades of experience helping to grow research and extension projects in the region, we believe in a strong future for the industry.

We’ve got all the equipment

We have all the equipment, technology and machinery to implement research trials, which replicate farming best practice and provide quality data. This includes tractors, seeders, sprayers, harvesters, trucks, soil sampling and monitoring equipment and a well equipped laboratory.

We’re always innovating

We design and invest in equipment and machinery that ensures our work is using the best technology available and is representative of farmer best practice. We are industry leaders in developing and adapting new methods of extension and communication of our work to farmers.

More than 50 years’ combined experience

Collectively, our team has more than 50 years’ experience in implementing small plot research trials, paddock-scale trials and demonstrations, resource monitoring programs, field days, workshops, seminars and development of extension and communication products.

About Us

Frontier Farming Systems (FFS) is a privately owned business which undertakes applied research, development and extension projects servicing broadacre agriculture.

Our team works throughout the Mallee region of New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia, regularly collaborating with a wide range of industry stakeholders.

These include (but are not limited to) the region’s farmers, Mallee Sustainable Farming (MSF), state government agencies, CSIRO, various universities and natural resource management bodies.

We also provide contract project services to public and private clients.

Some of our Projects

Improving Production on Sandy Soils

Project Partners: MSF/CSIRO/GRDC
Multiple trial sites are located in Vic and SA to evaluate strategies that improve productivity on underperforming Mallee sands. The trials evaluate techniques such as deep ripping, spading, organic matter inclusion, crop sequences and fertiliser placement. Detailed monitoring of plant growth, water use and soil parameters is being undertaken at each site.

Pulse Agronomy

Project Partners: Agriculture Victoria/GRDC
Major trial sites are located in VIC and SA to evaluate agronomic strategies to that improve productivity and profitability of lentils, chickpea, field pea, lupin and faba beans grown in the Mallee. Approximately 30 separate trials are designed and implemented each year to test factors such as variety adaptation, herbicide application, disease management, rhizobium inoculation, sowing times, nutrition inputs and seeding strategies. Our wider involvement in pulse agronomy project includes pulse check farmer group facilitation and implementation of workshops and field days.

Managing Mallee Seeps

Partners: MSF/Australian Government
Multi-season research trials are located at Turriff (VIC) and Lameroo (SA) to investigate high water use farming systems on sandy soils where Mallee seeps are becoming a problem. Each trial is comparing management strategies such as high inputs, soil amelioration, perennial pastures, summer crops and summer weed control strategies. Soil water is being monitored regularly with a Neutron Moisture Meter in addition to measurement of productivity.

Novel Pasture Systems

Partners: SARDI/GRDC
A range of regenerating legume pastures and novel establishment techniques (such as twin and summer sowing) are being evaluated at a long-term trial site located in the Victorian Mallee. The project is comparing not only the productivity of the pasture phase, but also the impact across the rotation including on soil parameters such as nitrogen, diseases and water, productivity of subsequent crops, pasture seedbanks and regeneration and farming system profitability.

Frost

Partners: MSF/SAGIT
The susceptibility of wheat, barley and lentil varieties used in the Clearfield®️ Production System to frost is being evaluated in the SA Mallee. Three years of field trials are comparing Clearfield varieties to conventional lines with similar phenology and plant architecture over multiple times of sowing. Phenology is monitored throughout the season and frost impact is assessed through measurement of floret sterility, harvest index, grain yield and grain quality.

Immersive Ag

Partner: MSF
We are partnering with Mallee Sustainable Farming (MSF) to pioneer a new way of conducting agricultural extension by developing ‘Immersive Ag’. This platform provides an immersive experience of our research and development activities to farmers and industry through products such as 360 trial site tours, 360 video and 3D models which can be viewed in the comfort of your own home or tractor through phones, tablets, PC and even VR headsets.

Our Team

Frontier Farming Systems comprises of a small team of experts led by Michael Moodie, a well-known professional who has 15 years’ experience of delivering research, development and extension to the Mallee and wider low rainfall farming region of Southern Australia.

Collectively, our team has more than 50 years combined experience in implementing activities such as small plot research trials, paddock-scale trials and demonstrations, resource monitoring programs, field days, workshops, seminars and the development of extension and communication products.

Our physical capacity includes a large inventory of equipment, technology and machinery to implement research trials, which replicate farming best practice and provide high quality data.

This includes tractors, seeders, sprayers, harvesters and trucks (for implementing on-farm small plot trials), soil sampling and monitoring equipment (including a Neutron Moisture Meter) and a fully functioning laboratory with large capacity drying ovens, grain threshing and grain quality measurement equipment.

We also design and invest in equipment and machinery that ensures our work is innovative and using the best technology available – this includes the development of a sub-soiling machine for use in soil improvement projects – and more recently through the acquisition of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV’s) to improve our data collection capabilities through multispectral imaging.

Our Clients

Work with us to make your next project a success

Our team provides extensive contract project services to public and private clients

Employment Opportunities

On the ground, to grow the Mallee’s future

We’re focussed on ongoing improvements to the Mallee broadacre farming sector, and with
decades of experience helping to grow research and extension projects in the region, we
believe in a strong future for the industry.

Full Time, negotiated salary

Working in conjunction with a small team, the role of Farming Systems Project Officer is to provide effective
support to deliver innovative, well planned and collaborative regional research and development activities in
the New South Wales and Victorian Mallee and in the South Australia Mallee regions.
A minimum requirement is to provide skilled technical support to conduct on farm research trials and related
activities across a number of projects that sit within the Farming Systems Projects portfolio. Subject to the
experience of the candidate, the role may also be expanded to encompass tasks such as project management,
reporting, funding submission development and industry extension and communication.