where it all began

evolution of project pioneer

The Project Pioneer concept originated from discussions between Resource Consulting Services (RCS) and WWF with a collective desire to see farm practices change in order to demonstrate the connection between the ecological sustainability and financial success of grazing businesses. It has since developed to involve over eight key organisations and 150 family businesses across more than one million hectares.

Stage 1: 2014

Examining transformations

With funding from WWF and RCS, ten producers from the Fitzroy and Burdekin catchments were studied to document the attitudes, approaches and outcomes being achieved from their participation in RCS’ programs. The study found these producers had adopted more sustainable practices on-farm, increased their business’ profitability and were happier.

Stage 2: 2014 – 2016

Key funding granted

Key discussions between WWF and the John T Reid Foundation successfully resulted in funding to perform on-ground works for reef outcomes.

Stage 3: 2016 – 2019

Project Pioneer officially launched

Project Pioneer was officially rolled out, and over 750,000 hectares of land came under management of the program. Fifty grazing businesses from across Cape York, the Burdekin, Fitzroy and Burnett Mary catchment areas joined the project and adopted practices to reduce erosion in grazing lands and improve water quality entering the Great Barrier Reef lagoon. The project was then extended to offer the Grazing for Profit™ School to a further 50 grazing businesses.

Stage 4: 2019 – 2021

Another 550,000ha, and growing

The project turned to focus on high priority areas of sediment loss, and an additional 50 grazing businesses entered the program. This extended the land area impacted to over 1,300,000ha.

Producers were also given the opportunity to develop specific skills through attending RCS Grazing Clinics, Business Fundamentals Workshops and Soil Solution Workshops.

In June 2021, after seven years, the Project came to an end after transforming the lives and business of almost 300 producers, while positively impacting more than 1.3 million ha of land area.


Want to talk more about Project Pioneer, or how RCS can help you deliver industry-leading results?

Project Pioneer is funded by the partnership between the Australian Government’s Reef Trust and the Great Barrier Reef Foundation. The project is delivered by RCS with support from WWF, Maia Technology, Farm Map 4D and CQUniversity.