The Best Australian Agribusiness Books

Farms Advice has collected over 30 books for you to take a look at. We want to be able to provide you with the resources in order to grow or even start your agribusiness. As we add to this article with new books we find we will categorise and enable a search for them.

If you know of a book that would offer something for our readers please put it in the comments below.

  • 1. Defending the Social Licence of Farming: Issues, Challenges and New Directions for Agriculture. 2011
  • Editors: Jacqueline Williams, Paul Martin
  • Description: Issues including climate variability, water scarcity, animal welfare, and declining biodiversity have led to increasing demands on farmers to conduct and communicate their farming practices so as to protect their ‘social licence to farm’. Farmers are increasingly expected to demonstrate their social and environmental responsibility as a pre-condition to being allowed to carry out their preferred farming and commercial practices. Current examples include the live animal export trade, battles over the protection of aquifers from mining, and contests over rural carbon emissions.
  • 2. SPSS for Applied Sciences: Basic Statistical Testing. 2013
  • Author: Cole Davis
  • Description: This book offers a quick and basic guide to using SPSS and provides a general approach to solving problems using statistical tests. It is both comprehensive in terms of the tests covered and the applied settings it refers to, and yet is short and easy to understand.
  • 3. Precision Agriculture for Grain Production Systems. 2013
  • Author: Brett Whelan, James Taylor
  • Description: Precision Agriculture (PA) is an approach to managing the variability in production agriculture in a more economic and environmentally efficient manner. It has been pioneered as a management tool in the grains industry, and while its development and uptake continues to grow amongst grain farmers worldwide, a broad range of other cropping industries have embraced the concept. This book explains general PA theory, identifies and describes essential tools and techniques, and includes practical examples from the grains industry.
  • 4. Business Management for Tropical Dairy Farmers. 2009
  • Author: John Moran
  • Description: Gives smallholder dairy farmers the business management skills they will need to remain sustainable. Most countries in South-East Asia have established smallholder dairy farming industries through social welfare and rural development programs to provide regular cash flow for poorly resourced farmers. These farms are now being treated as accepted rural industries and require a more business-minded approach based on changes to farm profitability.
  • 5. Australian Agriculture: Its History and Challenges
  • Author: Ted Hanzell
  • Description: A journey through Australian agricultural practices from colonial times to modern-day. Agriculture in Australia has had a lively history. The first European settlers in 1788 brought agricultural technologies with them from their homelands, influencing early practices in Australia. Wool production dominated the 19th century, while dairying grew rapidly during the first half of the 20th century.
  • 6. Sheep Farming for Meat and Wool. 2010
  • Editors: Jane Court, Sue Hides, John Webb-Ware
  • Description: Sheep Farming for Meat and Wool contains practical, up-to-date information on sheep production and management for producers throughout temperate Australia. It is based on research and extension projects conducted over many years by the Department of Primary Industries and its predecessors and the University of Melbourne.
  • 7. Australia’s Role in Feeding the World: The Future of Australian Agriculture 2016
  • Author: Tor Hundloe, Sarah Blagrove, Hannah Ditton
  • Description: Earth’s human population currently exceeds 7 billion, and by the year 2050 our planet will have at least two billion more mouths to feed. When faced with providing food for so many people, the idea is often advanced that Australia will become the ‘food bowl’ of Asia.
  • 8. Managing High-Grade Dairy Cows in the Tropics
  • Author: John Moran
  • Description: Dairy consumption in Asia has more than doubled over the last 25 years, and has led to more than 50% of the world’s total dairy imports now entering Asian markets. Consequently, Asian countries are seeking to improve their self-sufficiency in dairy produce by developing their local milk industries.
  • 9. Nature and Farming: Sustaining Native Biodiversity in Agricultural Landscapes
  • Author: David Andrew Norton and Nick Reid
  • Description: Conserving and enhancing native biodiversity on farms brings many benefits as well as providing many challenges. Nature and Farming explain why it is important to sustain native plants and animals in agricultural landscapes and outlines the key issues in developing and implementing practical approaches to safeguarding native biodiversity in rural areas.
  • 10. Community-based Control of Invasive Species. 2019
  • Editors: Paul Martin, Theodore Alter, Don Hine, Tanya Howard
  • Descriptions: Invasive species are among the greatest challenges to environmental sustainability and agricultural productivity in the world. One of the most promising approaches to managing invasive species is voluntary citizen stewardship. However, in order for control measures to be effective, private citizens often need to make sustained and sometimes burdensome commitments.
  • 11. Sustaining Global Food Security: The Nexus of Science and Policy 2019
  • Editor: Robert Zeigler
  • Description: Population growth alone dictates that global food supplies must increase by over 50% in coming decades. Advances in technology offer an array of opportunities to meet this demand, but history shows that these can be fully realised only within an enabling policy environment. Sustaining Global Food Security makes a compelling case that recent technological breakthroughs can move the planet towards a secure and sustainable food supply only if new policies are designed that allow their full expression.
  • 12. Adapting Agriculture to Climate Change: Preparing Australian Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries for the Future. 2009
  • Editors: Chris Stokes & Mark Howden
  • Description: Adapting Agriculture to Climate Change is a fundamental resource for primary industry professionals, land managers, policymakers, researchers, and students involved in preparing Australia’s primary industries for the challenges and opportunities of climate change.
  • 13. Feed pads for Grazing Dairy Cows Scott McDonald. 2010
  • Author: John Moran & Scott McDonald
  • Description: This book is the first detailed and comprehensive guide to the use of feed pads in the dairy industry, from planning and construction to day-to-day management, written especially for farmers. With ongoing droughts and access to water driving up the cost of conserved forages and feeding concentrates, feed pads offer flexible and efficient systems to maximise returns on feeding expensive supplements to grazing dairy cows, and form part of the risk management strategy for dairy farms.
  • 14. Changing Land Management: Adoption of New Practices by Rural Landholders 2011
  • Author: Frank Vanclay, David Pannell
  • Description: There is a rich and extensive history of research into factors that encourage farmers to change their land management practices, or inhibit them from doing so. Yet this research is often under-utilised in practice. Changing Land Management provides key insights from past and cutting-edge research to support decision-makers as they attempt to influence or assist rural communities adapting to changed circumstances, such as new technologies, new environmental imperatives, new market opportunities, or changing climate.
  • 15. Controlling Invertebrate Pests in Agriculture
  • Author: Paul Anthony Horne
  • Description: Controlling Invertebrate Pests in Agriculture discusses the principles of pest management and relates this to historical methods as well as current and future directions. It describes current practice, the concept of agricultural ecosystems, the role of pesticides, and cultural control options. A separate chapter covers biological control and the different ways in which this may be implemented.
  • 16. Land Use Intensification: Effects on Agriculture, Biodiversity and Ecological Processes
  • Editor: David Lindenmayer, Saul Cunningham, Andrew Young
  • Description: There can be little doubt that there are truly colossal challenges associated with providing food, fibre, and energy for an expanding world population without further accelerating already rapid rates of biodiversity loss and undermining the ecosystem processes on which we all depend. These challenges are further complicated by rapid changes in climate and its additional direct impacts on agriculture, biodiversity, and ecological processes.
  • 17. Ecotourism: A Practical Guide for Rural Communities. 1998
  • Author: Sue Beeton
  • Description: This book covers everything a person needs to think about before venturing into the ecotourism market. It explains what ecotourism is and who ecotourists are. It describes how to work with the local community and the local environment, highlighting some of the constraints and pitfalls. It explains what it needed to make a successful venture work – and how to make it pay. Aspects of Tourism Course. Contents include types of development and range of activities; Profile of an ecotourist and their personal, information, and educational needs.
  • 18. Financial Management for Agribusiness. 2007
  • Author: WJ Obst, R Graham, G Christie
  • Description: Financial Management for Agribusiness presents a practical approach to financial decision making for all those involved in agribusiness, including farmers, horticulturists, and supporting businesses, to manage invested funds, physical resources, and labour. It covers all the stages leading to a completed business plan and provides straightforward worked examples for each step.
  • 19. Restoring Farm Woodlands for Wildlife 2018
  • Authors: David Lindenmayer, Damian Michael, Mason Crane, Daniel Florance, Emma Burns
  • Description: The cattle industry in Australasia is the largest animal industry in the region, and includes the dairy, pasture-fed beef, feedlot, and live-export sectors. The industry operates across a wide range of environments and production systems, and more than half of the produced dairy and beef commodities are exported.
  • 20. Diseases of Cattle in Australasia. 2010
  • Author: Parkinson, T.J., Vermunt, J.J., and Malmo, J. 
  • Description: Millions of hectares of temperate woodland and billions of trees have been cleared from Australia’s agricultural landscapes. This has allowed land to be developed for cropping and grazing livestock but has also had significant environmental impacts, including erosion, salinity, and loss of native plant and animal species.
  • 21. Agribusiness and Society: Corporate Responses to Environmentalism, Market Opportunities, and Public Regulation
  • Author: K. Jansen & Sietze Vellema
  • Description: In heavily exploited agricultural landscapes the dedication of private lands for conservation may be the only near-term hope for biodiversity conservation (Perrings et al., 2006). Although many believe that some degree of government regulatory oversight is essential, there is also recognition that self-regulation has a potentially important role in realizing better environmental outcomes. Thus, if privately owned lands are to be incorporated into conservation networks, it is necessary to explore mechanisms by which willing participation of the landowners and other stakeholders
  • 22. The Farming Game: Agricultural Management and Marketing
  • Author: Bill Malcolm, Jack Makeham & Vic Wright
  • 23. Small Cattle for Small Farms
  • Author: Margo Hayes
  • Description: Small cattle breeds are manageable to control and care for and perfect for lifestyle blocks and small farms. They can be bred commercially for beef but their docile temperaments and small size also make them especially suitable for hobby farms. As more people have turned to the country for a ‘tree-change’, interest in these breeds has grown tremendously.
  • 24. Place in the Country: A Guide to Creating Your Patch of Rural Paradise. 2018
  • Author: Chris Ferreira
  • Description: This is a no-nonsense guide to choosing, establishing, and sustaining your patch of rural paradise in Australia and New Zealand. Chris Ferreira brings years of experience, a wealth of knowledge and a great sense of humour to these tasks, covering everything you need to know if you have, or plan to have, a hobby farm. Supplemented with photos, illustrations, and checklists, A Place in the Country is essential reading for the rural landowner.
  • 25. Small Farm Success Australia: How to Make a Life and a Living on the Land. 2018
  • Author: Andrew Campbell
  • Description: Are you farming right now, dreaming about, or studying to become a farmer? Are you ready to get out of the rat race to run your own race? Does a tree change tempt or your hobby farm need a boost? Want to make a part-time or serious living farming? If you’re ready to be your own boss, read this book and be inspired by the experiences of 25 farmers from across Australia. 
  • 26. Burning Bush: A Fire History of Australia. 1991
  • Author: Stephen J. Pyne
  • 27. Kidman The Forgotten King. 1987
  • Author: Jill Bowen
  • Description: the greatest pastoral landholder in Australia the true story of the greatest pastoral landholder in modern history As a barely literate youth of thirteen, Sidney Kidman ran away from home and worked as an odd-job boy in a grog shanty in outback Australia.
  • 28. Backyard Bees: A Guide for the Beginner Beekeeper. 2014
  • Author: Doug Purdie
  • Description: Bees are vital for the agricultural systems to work within Australia. Get the hives swarming on your farm to reap the rewards of having your own hives.
  • 29. Food Or War. 2019
  • Author: Julien Cribb
  • Description: Ours is the Age of Food. Food is a central obsession in all cultures, nations, the media, and society. Our future supply of food is filled with risk, and history tells us that lack of food leads to war. But it also presents us with spectacular opportunities for fresh human creativity and technological prowess. Julian Cribb describes a new food system capable of meeting our global needs on this hot and overcrowded planet. This book is for anyone concerned about the health, safety, affordability, diversity, and sustainability of their food – and the peace of our planet.
  • 30. The Allure of Fungi. 2018
  • Author: Alison Pouliot
  • Description: Although relatively little known, fungi provide the links between the terrestrial organisms and ecosystems that underpin our functioning planet. Discover how fungi can help out your farming practice.
  • 31. For the Love of Soil: Strategies to Regenerate Our Food Production Systems. 2019
  • Author: Nicole Masters
  • 32. Who’s Minding the Farm? In This Climate Emergency. 2019
  • Author: Patrice Newell
  • Description: In an era of rapid climate change, this vital account of how agriculture can address major issues is an Australian story with global ramifications. Patrice is at the frontline of enormous challenges, from water scarcity and land stewardship to food security and the rural-urban divide. The devastation of drought and the crises created by industrial-scale chemically-dependent primary production are discussed and alternatives proposed – along with bold ideas for new sources of energy.
  • 33. On Eating Meat: The truth about its production and the ethics of eating it.
  • Author: Ross Mars
  • 34. Citrus: A Guide to Organic Management, Propagation, Pruning, Pest Control, and Harvesting. 2007
  • Author: Gilbert Allen
  • Description: Follows in the footsteps of Allen’s other popular texts on nuts, apples, and tomatoes. This tells all about citrus trees, and how to grow them successfully. If you want to start a citrus orchard to offer a side income for your agribusiness this is a great book to start with to ge the foundations correct.

35. The Untrained Environmentalist: How an Australian grazier brought his baren property back to life
Author: John Fenton
Description: 50 years ago now John Fenton a young farmer took over his family’s farm and saw that it needed drastic action to be able to recover debt and make a thriving farm for wildlife and production. This story was shared by Pip Courtney on episode 61 of Farms Advice Podcast. Listen back to this episode with The Overseer of Agriculture.

Thank you for reading this article to help you find the right book for you. Get started today and do it with the right knowledge.

If you know of a book that you have read and would like to add it to the list please put it in the comments and we will add it to our own reading lists. I look to make a dent in these books myself! As my new years resolution was to read 1 book a month.

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