Aside from dirt, there's probably just one thing the rolling green fields of France have in common with the sun-baked paddocks of Australia.
Unexpectedly, it's a French crop scientist, and her name is Doctor Delphine Fleury.
"My area of expertise is crop genetics," she said.
"Especially the adaptation of varieties to our climate, and in particular, drought."
There's not a huge calling for drought tolerance research in France, which is why Dr Fleury has chosen to work at the University of Adelaide.
She said that while wheat and barley were grown the world over, European and American varieties simply would not make it here.
"It is impressive what we achieve in Australia considering the climate," Dr Fleury said.
"The differences are huge. Whenever I speak in the US or Europe I have to explain to them that in Australia, drought is a constant and, by default, every variety we grow is drought tolerant."
Grain varieties that do more with less have been key for many South Australian farmers this year, including the McGormans at Sanderston, 80 kilometres north-east of Adelaide.
The ABC visited the McGorman's farm in June.
Their crop had just been sown at a time when the weather bureau was saying some areas had experienced one of the driest winter starts recorded.
But new grain varieties, combined with new farming techniques that preserve as much soil moisture as possible, made brothers Alex and Paul McGorman feel it was worth a go.
"Twenty years ago, this wouldn't have been possible," Alex McGorman told the ABC in June.
"Without the science and technology, we'd be waiting around for the rain and the crop probably wouldn't be in."
Their father, John McGorman, was a little more pessimistic about the prospects for success.
Now that the harvesters are going he's changed his mind.
"It's amazed me, what we've got for this season … we've only had about two thirds of our average rainfall," John McGorman said.
"At the end of June, I thought we were heading down the tube."
For a below average year of rainfall, a better than average crop is extraordinary.
But in crop science, there's no such thing as a free lunch.
Dr Fleury pointed out that something peculiar happened with drought tolerant grains in wetter seasons — the yield obviously goes up but, curiously, quality often goes down.
Her goal is to solve this dilemma, with her work being funded by the Australian Research Council's Wheat Hub.
"It's the protein content. Usually it drops as the yield goes up," Dr Fleury said.
"It is really a trend between the two and that's what we are trying to understand. Where does it come from and can we break it?
"We have found some varieties that are able to do that [balance yield and protein] and so that is a source of genetic material for us … and now we are studying them to find out why they do this."
Science, experience and a dash of daring — they have combined to make a difficult season pay off for the McGormans.
After a longish pause, and a good laugh, John McGorman had this to say: "Oh well, I guess the boys were right … yes!"ABC