Hon Alannah MacTiernan MLC

Hon Alannah MacTiernan MLC

Minister for Regional Development; Agriculture and Food; Hydrogen Industry

    New pasture option to maximise production and resilience

    9/12/2021 10:00 AM
    • New locally bred yellow serradella pasture suited to low and medium rainfall
    • SerraMax to boost livestock enterprises and soil fertility

    A new yellow serradella legume pasture developed in Western Australia will help revitalise soil health while providing sustainable livestock feed.


    The new variety SerraMax was bred by the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) from seed collected from the Greek island of Santorini.


    The variety has performed well in field trials in WA and New South Wales and will now move to the next stage of bulking up available seed for growers.


    SerraMax provides a new pasture option for livestock producers in low to medium rainfall areas, while its nitrogen fixing qualities can improve soil fertility and boost the yields of following crops.


    The hard seeded variety is well suited to acidic sands, has good insect and disease tolerance, establishes quickly to outcompete germinating weeds and can be harvested with a conventional harvester.


    It is also suitable for use as a permanent pasture or in mixtures with perennial grasses due to its capacity to regenerate well compared with other yellow serradella varieties.


    The new pasture option is currently being evaluated by DPIRD for its grazing potential to provide a year-round food supply through a combination of perennial and annual pastures and forage crops to reduce supplementary feed costs.


    SerraMax will be protected by plant breeders' rights and an expression of interest process is being undertaken to secure seed growers for this variety. For more information about the new variety visit https://www.agric.wa.gov.au/serramax


    Comments attributed to Agriculture and Food Minister Alannah MacTiernan:


    "Serramax will open the door to alternative production strategies for our farmers in low and medium rainfall areas, improving business resilience.


    "This new variety has been developed in WA using the expertise and experience of our scientists from the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, hand-in-hand with local farmers and industry.


    "Our Government is investing in practical strategies to build business resilience and climate-proof broadacre enterprises to ensure WA agribusinesses remain strong and internationally competitive.


    "We encourage broadacre producers to investigate SerraMax and examine how this unique new pasture option could benefit their operation in the short and long term."


    Minister's office - 6552 6200