Dairy Mega Evaluation
Evaluation of Research, Development and Extension
On 10 November 2011, the Hon Mr Peter Walsh, Minister for Agriculture and Food Security, released the evaluation report “The impact of innovation on the dairy industry over the last 30 years”.
DPI and Dairy Australia jointly commissioned an evaluation to determine the contribution of industry and government investment in pre-farm research, development and extension to Victoria’s and Australia’s dairy industry form 1980-2010. The evaluation also aimed to capture learning’s to inform future investment decisions.
Watch a short video of Bruce Kefford, DPI Deputy Secretary Agriculture Research and Development and Ian Halliday, Dairy Australia Managing Director, speak about the key findings of the evaluation.
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The key evaluation findings are summarised in the document “Innovation doubles milk production”. Key highlights include:
- Despite facing many challenges, the dairy industry doubled milk production over the last thirty years with about the same number of cows and on less land. This was achieved primarily through increasing milk yield per cow and at the same time increasing stocking rates.
- A combination of increased pasture production and utilisation, effective use of supplements and genetically more efficient cows were key factors underpinning improved industry performance.
- RD&E has contributed to almost half the increase in industry production.
- The return on the combined investment by both industry and government is estimated to be at least 3.3 to 1.
The document “Victoria’s dairy industry: An economic history of recent developments” provided the background for the evaluation on the major economic, environmental and social pressures and key policy and regulatory changes the dairy industry has faced.
Copies of the full reports can be found on the Dairy Australia website.