A new initiative to enable the acceleration of the hemp industry from a nascent sector to a competitive and profitable sector in Australia is underway. University of Southern Queensland, who is leading the initiative, are submitting a bid for a hemp co-operative research centre (CRC). The core bid team includes Deakin University, NSW DPI, Southern Cross University, Western Sydney University, CSIRO and Greenlab.
Davis George of Consulting IS, who is supporting the bid application, says, “We believe the CRC is the perfect vehicle to help break hemp out of the ‘cottage industry’ and amalgamate all aspects of the supply chain. It provides the sector with 10 years of secured funding to target production, manufacturing and end products (construction, textiles, animal and health food) and brings together a world class team of researchers and industry from around the world.”
In broader terms, he says, it will be good value for industry interested in entering or further establishing their presence in the hemp industry, with:
- Leveraged funding: One dollar put into the CRC will be matched by the Australian Government
- IP Protection: Each project has an agreement before it is prosed outlining the IP arrangements. If you contribute to the project, your IP benefits will be protected.
- Research to solve companies needs: Depending on the level of commitment, the CRC can perform targeted research on areas that need improving.
- Access to Government Departments: NSW Department of Industry, Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries and Northern Territory Department of Ag are on the team. This will help us ease regulations domestically and internationally.
- Industry, Government, NGO’s and Research networks all around the world
Hemp is touted as a key crop for the future, with environmental benefits not least of which is its ability to lock up carbon, particularly when used in building products.
CRC’s are part of a flagship Government program that fosters commercial outcomes from collaboration between industry and research.