More than 2,400 grain and cotton growers and spray contractors across QLD and NSW have signed on to a world-first, Australian-developed weather data system to help minimise spray drift and limit the damage it causes to food and fibre crops and the environment.

Spray drift has long been recognised as a significant, multimillion-dollar problem for agriculture. This is highlighted by the recently published CRDC Grower Survey, 2023, which reported a staggering one in two cotton growers being impacted by spray drift, with a devastating impact – on average – of over $250,000 for each impacted grower. 

The Weather and Networked Data (WAND) system helps growers understand when they can (and cannot) spray by providing free real-time information and a two-hour nowcast of hazardous surface inversions. Spraying during this natural meteorological phenomenon can carry spray droplets several kilometres from the target area, damaging crops and native vegetation.

The result of six years of collaborative research by the Cotton Research and DevelopmentCorporation (CRDC) and Grains Research and Development  Corporation (GRDC) – with the support of commercial partner, Goanna Ag – WAND is a much-needed solution to a problem shared by all primary producers, both across Australia and around the world.

Read the full media release here.

You can also access a new WAND FACT SHEET (Dec 2023) that explains:

  • the impact of spray drift;
  • the importance of WAND; and,
  • the changes/advancements coming for WAND in 2024.