Australia's genetics institute for agriculture

Australia's genetics institute for agriculture

Australia's genetics institute for agriculture

Australia's genetics institute for agriculture

Australia's genetics institute for agriculture


For over 45 years AGBU has been researching genetic markers that improve the healthiness and productivity of a range of species.

Using massive datasets on animals and plants worldwide and creating highly complicated algorithms, our team delivers knowledge and tools that help breeders identify the best animals and plants. Through our partners, this information is then made available and useful for breeders and producers in all industries.

The economic contribution that AGBU has made over the years is immense, and underpins continuing improvements in productivity and profitability in the industries we work with.


The close links and collaborations with commercialisation partners and with industry direct are vital to the existence of AGBU.

Our scientists work closely with partners and industry to create a conduit for innovation that sets the standard world-wide.

The AGBU culture that has grown from a visionary founder is centred on the combination of excellence in R&D, attention to delivering funders' needs, and to developing a strong and deep understanding of the needs and goals of the end users - tools for determining the value of the genes of individual animals and plants, at an industry scale.


We supervise postgraduate research students across a range of animal and plant species. To view a list of our current and completed PhD student research projects, go to Students.

For information about postgraduate research scholarships at the University of New England, visit HDR Scholarships.

Australian applicants may contact AGBU at any time via in order to explore options for a postgraduate scholarship.

AGBU supports Australian livestock industries by providing genetic evaluation and breeding systems to breeders and commercial producers.

Turning Ideas into Dollars

The world has other

great research institutes in animal genetics and there are other centres delivering direct outcomes to farmers, but AGBU is one place that does both and does it well.

Balanced Breeding:
Multi-disciplinary collaboration

Balancing genetics, biology and economics to improve profitability for beef producers.

Working with Sheep Farmers

Critical to the success of the R&D work on the genetic improvement of sheep, has been the relationships built with farmers.

Innovation in Beef Cattle Genetics

Australia's beef industry now generates over $7bn in sales on-farm each year, and a significant contribution to the industry growth over the last 4 decades has been steady genetic improvement.

Wrestling with a WOMBAT

WOMBAT is a program to facilitate analyses fitting a linear, mixed model via restricted maximum likelihood (REML). Since 2006, WOMBAT has been downloaded more than 21,000 times and benefited researchers around the world.

Learning about

AGBU is a key collaborator in AR&D for the beekeeping industry, because the strength of a national queen bee breeding program will be through the data generated.


Our Charter

AGBU was established as a co-operative research and development institute to further the application of genetics to the Australian livestock industry.


AGBU's research program encompasses

2,280,840 calves bred using BREEDPLAN in the Southern Hemisphere (1994-2012)

2,307,830 sheep evaluated in LAMBPLAN and 1,685,895 sheep evaluated in MERINOSELECT (2005-2015)

48% of all pigs farmed in Australia bred using PIGBLUP assistance

50% of Australian commercial timber bred using TREEPLAN information

Improving outcomes for rural and regional communities

Developing genetic evaluation systems that are the envy of the world

Our Board of Management

Lucinda Corrigan
Michael Katz
Chris Armstrong
Sion Jones
Guy McMullen
Tamsyn Crowley