CSIRO hosted the popular AgCatalyst event at Melbourne Park Function Centre 15-16 August 2018, showcasing the latest science and technology in the agriculture and food sectors.

Held at Melbourne Park Function Centre 15-16 August 2018, the highly interactive and engaging AgCatalyst 2018 was attended by around 600 people from agribusiness, government, industry and research sectors. There were live demonstrations, latest products and tech on display and plenty of networking opportunities. Sessions included young CSIRO scientists pitching their research, CSIRO and partners showing how they have delivered impacted and proposals for research to address major challenges put forward by CSIRO's partner organisations.

[Music plays and images flash through of an AgCatalyst sign, people in queues inside the building, a couple of lanyards, a male putting on a lanyard, people posing for a photo, a male looking at a sign, and a female wearing a set of goggles]

[Images continue to flash through of a male watching a screen, a female on the stage displaying a piece of equipment and John Manners at the AgCatalyst event talking to the camera and text appears: John Manners, Director CSIRO Agriculture and Food]

John Manners: AgCatalyst allows the CSIRO Agriculture and Food to connect to its industry partners

[Images flash through of a female on the stage talking while a male listens, a male talking into a microphone being held by a female, and two males comparing lanyards]

much more actively and more broadly and AgCatalyst also brings all the researchers in the CSIRO in the Agriculture, Food and Food area together 

[Images flash through of two tennis players walking through the event, people at the event, and a female speaking to a group of people at the event]

and also, I think the conversation with industry and amongst ourselves will help us to find better ways of getting our products to market.

[Images move through of a 3D printer printing a gecko shape in mince, Poppy McBain talking to the camera, Poppy shaking hands with someone, and a male talking and text appears: Poppy McBain, Agersens]

Poppy McBain: The biggest difference for me being here at a CSIRO event is that we’ve got researchers asking really intelligent different questions to the ones that we normally get from producers. 

[Images move through of different groups of people in conversation, and then participants seated at tables on the stage in conversations and listening]

So, it’s been a really valuable experience and certainly an interesting one for the company. 

[Image changes to show Poppy talking to the camera again in front of a full-sized model bull]

The ideas are great, but the people are exciting too.

[Images move through of people in conversation, people at the event, two males on the stage and Dan Walker talking and text appears: Dan Walker, Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research]
Dan Walker: You probably hear the background hum really from a couple of hours before the event opened, right through, 

[Images move through of a female picking up a boxed product, a chef frying food, the chef’s face, and the pasta dish he has created]

a lot of energy in the room, a lot of enthusiasm, a lot of conversation, a lot of ideas flowing and that’s a fantastic environment to be in.

[Images move through of people eating, people in conversation, a Smartphone display, a group of people posing for a photograph, Ben Mitchell talking to the camera, and a male on stage and text appears: Ben Mitchell, Nitto Denko Corporation]

Ben Mitchell: This has been amazing. This is our first time to come to AgCatalyst to present and I guess the engagement we’ve got from industry as well as internally from the CSIRO researchers and the interest that they have has been, you know, quite overwhelming for us as a brand-new company for the ag industry.

[Images move through of wine being poured and tasted]

Mirjana Prica: The vibe has been excellent. 

[Image changes to show Mirjana Prica talking to the camera and then the image changes to show different groups of people presenting products on the stage]

The intensity of the conversations is evident from the way that people are interacting, the proximity and closeness of people.

[Images move through of Alastair MacLachlan talking, bottles of fruit juice in an ice bucket, a female tasting the juice, three males around a laptop and Alastair talking and text appears: Alastair MacLachlan, Preshafood]

Alastair McLachlan: I’m here to tell our story, to help people that are visiting AgCatalyst to understand that you can actually start with a project with the CSIRO and crystallise it into a commercial reality with a commercial outcome.

[Images move through of a sign advertising broccoli latte, a person spooning powder into a cup, a male using a coffee machine, and heads of broccoli]

John Manners: I’m feeling fantastic. AgCatalyst really achieves everything that we were hoping. 

[Images move through of a female making a broccoli latte, handing the cup to a male, the male tasting it, a group of participants on stage bowing, and John talking to the camera]

It’s about breaking down barriers, conversations between science and industry, science and end users and I think all of that was achieved at this meeting.

[Music plays and the CSIRO logo and text appears: CSIRO Australia’s innovation catalyst]

AgCatalyst 2018: Serving Up Value

AgCatalyst 2018 gets underway

AgCatalyst 2018 ACE pitching team

WInners of the People's Choice Award for Advantage Innovation

Boundary Bend olive oil tasting

Announcing next generation cotton

Ben MacDonald

Bernie Hobbs address the audience

Cheers to Brown Brothers Mystique

WInners of Advantage Innovation

Broccoli lattes

Scientist shows cirtual fencing collar

Caroline Lee displays a virtual fencing collar

Scientists demonstrates the Numnuts tool

Ali Small demonstrating NumNuts

Pancakes made with BARLEYmax

BARLEYmax pancakes

Man with prawn picture holds up Novacq prawn feed

Barney Hines shows off Novacq prawn feed

Larry Marshall, Jane Bray and Kate Langford

Ha Truong and the salmon dance

Man speaking

Hiz Jamali pitches Nanobubbles

Man on stage with coloured smoke

Michael Battaglia and Future Feed

Woman with Ipad and 3-d image

Marni Tebbutt and the Phenomobile Lite

Woman with trophy and certificate

Madeline Mitchell winner of ACE pitch competition

Woman with streamers falling over her head

Lilly Lim-Camacho showcasing the value chain tool

Woman dances with a beer bottle

Katrina Spencer showcasing Kebari

The AgCatalyst 2018 organising team

Stanley Chen pitches

Wagyu beef

Presentation of the Virtual Irrigation Academy

Registration is open

The Project Runway team

The AgCatalyst tennis stars

Perfect Match session

Man in ninja costume

Ninja Steve Swain

Man dressed in inflatable yellow suit

Surinder Singh and omega 3 canola

TJ Higgins and cowpeas

Mark Turner and his 'cereal killer' pitch

Announcing next generation cotton

John Manners and Farm VR experience

Woman dressed in all cotton

Colleen MacMillan shows off 100% Australian cotton

Man with wheat sheafs

Evans Lagudah displays rust-resistant wheat


Day 1: Wednesday 15 August

Time Description


Registration & exhibition open




Welcome and opening

ACE: Our best and brightest young researchers pitching their science
Nano bubbles - Hiz Jamali
Instantaneous Soil Information - Uta Stockmann
Fertiliser run-off from sugarcane farms - Yuri SHendryk

Mixed Doubles: CSIRO and partners present stories of impact. What made it happen? What were the challenges?
Lifecycle assessment of Australian canola - Sandra Eady, CSIRO; Nick Goddard, Asstralian Oilseeds Federation; Tim Grant, Lifecycles; Simon Smalley, DAWR; Nicola Hiner, DAWR
Pod-borer resistant cowpeas - TJ Higgins, CSIRO

Approach Shot: Agribusiness start-up companies share examples of different ways they are working with CSIRO to develop new technologies
Stu Adams, Anonomeye; Xavier Sirault, CSIRO
Alicia Garden, Dicovery Ag; Jaci Brown, CSIRO
Rob Mellor, Digital Agriculture Services; Dave Henry, CSIRO


Afternoon tea and time to explore the exhibition, and taste broccoli lattes


Side Event: CSIRO and KPMG Foods for Health – A High Growth Sector (Tennis HQ Room 2)


Advantage Innovation: Teams present their solutions to challenges posed by various organisations, competing for funded scoping study
Cloud 9 (CRDC challenge) - Ben MacDonald
AvoCount (Costa challenge) - Steve Burdettte, Costa; Stephen Gensemer, CSIRO Manufacturing
Hooking Fish on Grains (GRDC challenge) - Ronald Yu & Kyle Reynolds, CSIRO

ACE: More pitches from our young researchers
Bathing Salmon - Paula Lima
Personalised Food - Nicholas Archer
Fingerprinting Provenance - Nina Welti

A CSIRO food story


Cocktail function, including beer and wine tasting, an address from CSIRO Chief Executive, Larry Marshall and a very special presentation

Program Day 2: Thursday 16 August

Table 2.0: Program Day 2
Time Description


Registration and exhibition opens


Recap and welcome back

ACE: Last round of pitches from our young researchers
Fabulous New Fibres - Madeline Mitchell
Better Chicken for Australians - Stanley Chen
On the Case of a Cereal Killer - Mark Turner

Mixed Doubles: CSIRO and partners present further stories of impact
Virtual Irrigation Academy - Richard Stirzaker, CSIRO and Samantha Grover, ACIAR
High Pressure Food Processing - Lloyd Simons, CSIRO and Alastair McLachlan, Preshafood


Morning tea, time to view the exhibition and enjoy freshly prepared BARLEYmaxTM snacks


Side Event: FIAL and Innovation Connections Workshop From IP to 'Buy Me' - How to Pitch Your IP Like a Pro (Tennis HQ Room 2)


Advantage Innovation: Round two of teams presenting solutions to challenges posed by various organisations
AgAnswers (Australian Farm Institutue Challenge - Richard Heath, AFI and Matt Stenson, CSIRO Land and Water
FoodTruth (DAWR challenge) - Peter Carson, DAWR and Peter Carter, CSIRO Data 61
DataMate (CSD challenge) - James Quinn, CSD

Winner of the ACE pitch announced

Winners of Advantage Innovation announced

Wrap up


Lunch and last chance to view exhibits


Event closes

Gold Partner Logos

  • Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research
  • Cotton Seed Distributors,
  • Department of Agriculture and Water Resources
  • Grains Research Development Corporation
  • Food Innovation Australia Limited,
  • ON Innovation powered by CSIRO
  • Department of Industry, Innovation and Science.

Silver Sponsors Logos

  • Agersens
  • KPMG
  • Nitto

Bronze Sponsors

  • AgriFutures
  • Cotton Research and Development Corporation
  • Lawsons Grains
  • Nufarm
  • Ridley.

Exhibitors Logos

  • Austrade
  • Australia Unlimited
  • Digital Agriculture Services
  • NSW Department of Primary Industries
  • Elders
  • ThinkHCI
  • Plant & Food Research Australia.

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