of China Australia Food Security Cooperation Initiative (CAFSCI)

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Lucerne (Alfalfa) adapted to adverse environments in China and Australia

Overview of Project

The project was a joint collaboration wiht Australia, China and Laos primarily aimed to produce lucerne varieties that are adapteable to environmental stresses relevant to China and Australia through the development of germplasm and novel screening techniques. Sustainable agricultural production is vital for A China. As the country develops, demand for animal products is increasing. However, the country faces a severe shortage of forage, as well as many environmental problems such as increasing soil salinity, acidity and erosion. The vast grassland areas are not very productive, partly due to inappropriate management but also because of unimproved pasture plants and deforestation. Australia also has related problems of salinity and waterlogging caused by a lack of deep-rooted perennials plants to keep watertables low. Part of the solution to these problems may come from lucerne, which is a nutritious, productive perennial forage legume, with the potential to improve animal production and soil stability, and lower watertables

Key Outcomes of Project

The project aimed toto produce lucerne varieties that are adapted to environmental stresses relevant to China and Australia through the Acquisition and field testing of Germplasm and the Developing of novel screening techniques along with the training of Chinese researchers and publishing lucerne improvement findings and extension courses.

Project Dates

01 Jan 2001 - 31 Dec 2004


Department of Agriculture - Western Australia - Australia
University of Tasmania - Australia
Gansu Agricultural University - China
Shandong Academy of Agricultural Sciences - China
Beijing Forestry University - China
Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences - China
Gansu Grasslands Ecological Research Institute - China


Dr Geoff Auricht



08 8303 9498

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