29 Oct 2008

Gloomy outlook forecast by AgResearch and CSIRO

6:46 am on 29 October 2008

Principal livestock research organisations in New Zealand and Australia foresee a gloomy outlook for investment in their science research areas.

AgResearch and the CSIRO of Australia are worried that the global financial crisis could significantly reduce funding for biotechnology and agricultural research.

Head of Applied Technologies at AgResearch, Dr Jimmy Suttie, told a science conference in Christchurch on Tuesday that financial turmoil will lower the appetite for risk - reducing the likelihood of investment in areas such as animal biotechnology.

He said a downturn in farming would also have financial repercussions for AgResearch if it hit the significant funding the organisation gets from farmer levies.

CSIRO livestock industries division chief, Professor Allan Bell, also predicted a tough couple of years.

He said both Australia and New Zealand will be affected by conditions in export markets and the impact the financial crisis will have on other economies.