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AWI to invest additional funds for LTEM course expansion
29
Jul '14
Australian Wool Innovation (AWI) will further fund the expansion of the popular Lifetime Ewe Management course (LTEM), investing an additional $800,000 for the further expansion of the course to 2017.
 
AWI has been the principal funder of LTEM and the Lifetime Wool research project it evolved from, contributing more than $10 million over the last 12 years.
 
The course is delivered through Rural Industries Skill Training (RIST) via facilitators across all major sheep producing regions of Australia.
 
LTEM has now involved more than 2000 sheep producers managing over 20 per cent of the nation's ewe flock or 8 million ewes. The latest round of funding will assist the training of up to 600 more sheep producers in 120 groups as demand for the course continues, particularly in pastoral country.
 
The average LTEM participant manages just over 3500 ewes and has increased whole farm lamb marking by 10pc, reduced ewe mortality by 33pc and increased stocking rate by 12pc.
 
The two-year nationally accredited course involves small groups of farmers learning from each other through on-farm facilitated activities such as condition scoring, pasture assessment and feed budgeting. Producers learn to best match the energy requirements of animals with pasture production and supplementary feeding to maximise animal welfare and production.
 
Alex Coole, woolgrower from Franklind, WA said she had significantly benefitted from the LTEM course.
 
"The knowledge I have gained by being involved in the LTEM course has not only improved my practical skills and assessments, but has given me a much better understanding of feed budgeting and the importance of sheep energy requirements. This knowledge along with the interaction between like-minded farmers has been a worthwhile investment of my time."
 
AWI Research General Manager Paul Swan said the organisation was a proud developer and supporter of the LTEM program.
 
"It is a great example of where investment in initial research, its development and effective extension model has paid off handsomely for the woolgrowers we work for and will continue to generate benefits for years to come."
 
In the meantime, the LTEM Application for smartphones is now being trialled and on target for release later this year.
 

AWI

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