Developing an oilseed industry in Northern Australia

Broadacre Cropping
Reference number
CRCNA funding
Total project value
Project length
3 years
Finish date
Project Status
Project Manager
Ian Biggs


  • Farmacist Pty Ltd
  • Olive Vale Pastoral Pty Ltd
  • The Lakeland Farming Trust
  • Savannah Ag Research Pty Ltd (Savannah Ag Consulting)


This project includes funding from the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC), which is included in the total CRCNA funding.

The project aims to identify a range of adapted oilseed crops which can reach commercial capacity and be a high-value component of a northern Australia cropping system.

Oilseed crops, both summer and winter have been trialled on a very small scale in Far North Queensland, with promising results. This includes, but is not limited to:  sesame, soybeans, safflower, linseed, canola, mustards and nigella. These crops can be utilised in a range of market segments from whole seed to, food-grade vegetable oil, health and wellbeing products and industrial applications.

In addition to the commercial production trials, the project team will also undertake pilot market development for the range of market segments and their value-added end-use with partners looking for feedstock, so they can progress processing, supply chain and infrastructure requirements at their expense.

This project will deliver the opportunities for growers at the farm gate level to diversify into alternative oilseed cash crops through the identification of suitable options for the region.

Expected outcomes

  • A comprehensive report and recommendations which will encourage investment in production, value-adding capability and processing capacity.
  • Generate 11 new jobs in FNQ during the research and directly following the completion of the work and potential to create a further 20 to 40 new farms jobs in the medium-term.