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Fresh face for Research and Innovation team
This month, we’re pleased to introduce Gemma Wyburn, who has joined APL’s Research and Innovation team as the new Climate Friendly Farming Program Leader.
Gemma has a Bachelor of Natural Science majoring in Animal Science, and a Graduate Diploma in Psychology. Before joining APL, Gemma had spent four and a half years at Australian Eggs in various roles, and in her time there developed a love of working with farmers to develop meaningful research projects to address on farm needs while also being proactive and forward looking to respond to future challenges.
Gemma started with us in early May, and has spent the weeks since wrapping her head around the diverse environmental portfolio, which includes some of the following projects:
- Small scale biogas case studies – this project was recently completed, with findings to be released soon. Larger piggeries (1000+ sows) have set up and used biogas very successfully to reduce their electricity costs. This project used a real farm for a case study that determined the cost and viability of biogas at a smaller piggery (535 sows), and also used that information to run a series of different biogas use-case scenarios, including exploring biogas as an alternative revenue stream for producers.
- Bubble Column Evaporator (BCE) – this project is exploring a prototype technology that is able to convert effluent waste into both clean drinking water and sterilized water for cleaning. Work is ongoing to get this prototype functioning at the scale of a commercial piggery, and researchers are also exploring use of solar and/or biogas to power BCE use and keep it low cost.
- Black Soldier Fly – this project is exploring the use of piggery effluent as a feed source for black soldier flies. The black soldier fly residue casings (frass) will be trialled as a fertiliser product, while the fly larvae will be tested as an alternative feed protein source.
As you can see, there is currently a strong theme in the environmental portfolio around sustainability and exploring ways to convert piggery waste into useful resources like water and electricity. Gemma looks forward to using her experience and passion for intensive industries to help tell these good news stories about pork, and position it as the climate-friendly meat of choice.
Looking ahead: in response to feedback from our new producer relations team, we will be bringing the focus of next month’s article back to African Swine Fever (ASF). Specifically, we’ll be covering some of the progress APL has made in that space over the last few months, and also some of the new projects we’re working to get up and running, the findings of which will help progress our industry in its ASF prevention and preparedness planning.
Article originally written by Peter Haydon for Australian Pork Newspaper
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Australian Pork Limited
The producer owned organisation supporting and promoting the Australian pork industry. Australian Pork Limited (APL) is caring for the future of Australian pork.