AUSVEG Weekly Update – 14 November 2017
In this edition
- AUSVEG update: AUSVEG Board elects new Chair
- Project update: Industry leadership and development mission to USA – Applications open now!
- Resource: Strategic Investment Plan for potato growers released by Hort Innovation
- Survey: Share your thoughts on the Weekly Update re-design
- Resource: Soil Wealth and ICP episode of InfoVeg TV now online
- Industry update: TPP transition to management plan in full swing
- Industry update: A&D Weighing continue support for vegetable industry
- Assistance opportunity: Trial IPM on-farm as part of Hort Innovation project (SA)
- Project update: Tasmanian Women in Vegetables study tour and study group
- Project update: 2018 Growing Leaders program applications now open!
- Industry update: Bundaberg grower Darren Zunker nominated for Syngenta Growth Award
- Resource: New VegNET video – Spray technology for vegetable growers
- Economic update: Packaging innovation
- Project update: Food safety ‘supercharger’ arrives in Australia for Hort Innovation project
- Event: Gippsland Women in Horticulture Advance (Ellinbank, VIC)
- Survey: 2017 Global Innovations in Horticulture feedback form
- Workshop: QFF flood recovery workshop (Bundaberg, QLD)
- Hort Innovation project opportunities
- The week’s top stories
AUSVEG update: AUSVEG Board elects new Chair
Bill Bulmer on his farm in Lindenow.
Third-generation Victorian leafy vegetable grower Bill Bulmer has been unanimously elected to the position of AUSVEG Chair following the AUSVEG Board meeting held on Monday 13 November 2017 in Melbourne.
Bill Bulmer is Director of Bulmer Farms, located in Lindenow in East Gippsland. Mr Bulmer is a long-serving member of the vegetable industry and currently sits on the Executive Committee of AUSVEG VIC and the Horticulture Committee of the Victorian Farmers’ Federation.
Mr Bulmer’s election follows the decision by Geoff Moar, who had held the position of AUSVEG Chair since 2013, to not nominate for re-election. Mr Moar will continue to serve on the AUSVEG Board. Queensland vegetable grower Belinda Adams has been unanimously re-elected to the position of AUSVEG Deputy Chair.
AUSVEG thanks Mr Moar for his hard work and dedication to the Australian vegetable and potato industries during his time as AUSVEG Chair. He has been a steadfast advocate for growers and our industry, and his work as Chair has been deeply appreciated.
The Board’s meeting coincided with the AUSVEG AGM, which was attended by representatives from all AUSVEG state member organisations.
For more information, see the AUSVEG website.
Vegetable feature article
Project update: Industry leadership and development mission to USA – Applications open now!
Expressions of interest are now open for the 2018 United States Industry Leadership and Development Mission, which will be visiting leading vegetable growing operations, agribusinesses and the World Ag Expo in California, Arizona and Florida!
This mission will run from 3–16 February 2018 and is a strategic levy investment under the Hort Innovation Vegetable Fund, with participation only open to vegetable levy-paying growers.
The subsidised cost of $2,500 covers air and land travel, single room accommodation and most meals on the mission. For more information or to express your interest in attending, please contact email@example.com.
Potato feature article
Resource: Strategic Investment Plan for potato growers released by Hort Innovation
The Strategic Investment Plan (SIP) for potato growers will help guide Hort Innovation’s management of investment programs for the industry for the next five years. It lays the foundation for decision making in levy investments and represents the balanced interest of the industry. The very important function of the SIP is to ensure levy investment decisions in the Hort Innovation Potato – Fresh Fund align with industry priorities.
The SIP has been developed in close partnership with growers and other industry stakeholders, and Hort Innovation thanks all those who have contributed their valuable time and ideas.
Have a quick look with the handy ‘at a glance’ version, or download the full document, on Hort Innovation’s Potato – Fresh Fund page.
Survey: Share your thoughts on the Weekly Update re-design
It’s been a little while since we launched the re-designed AUSVEG Weekly Update, and we want get your thoughts on the new layout, some of the features we’ve added, and the sort of stories you like to see!
We want to make sure that this newsletter gives you the news and information that you want to see, so we put together a feedback form so you can let us know what you think. Click here to take the quick survey.
Resource: Soil Wealth and ICP episode of InfoVeg TV now online
A new episode of InfoVeg TV is now live! In this episode, we look at the Soil Wealth and Integrated Crop Protection (ICP) projects, two of the strategic levy investments under the Hort Innovation Vegetable Fund that are helping growers to improve their soil health and protect their crops.
We talked to Gordon Rogers (AHR), Carl Larsen (RMCG) and Greg Murdoch (Hort Innovation) about how the Soil Wealth and ICP projects are delivering demonstration sites, multi-platform communications and other extension activities that give growers practical advice and knowledge of on-farm practices.
Industry update: TPP transition to management plan in full swing
With the incursion of tomato potato psyllid (TPP) into Western Australia declared non-eradicable in April, a Transition to Management Plan (TTM) has been prepared under the Emergency Plant Pest Response Deed (EPPRD).
With the collaboration of all jurisdictions and industry, the TTM has now swung into action. The Western Australian Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development is taking the lead as the management plan undertakes the following actions:
- Surveillance around the 15 local government areas of Perth, specifically looking for the presence of Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum (CLso), the bacterium which causes the zebra chip complex in potatoes, in TPP populations.
- Reviewing market access and trade requirements.
- Managing TPP by developing Enterprise Management Plans in consultation with industry stakeholders. Gavin Foord (Foord Systems) is leading the development of these plans.
- Undertaking research into the safest methods of TPP management as well as aiming for a nationally endorsed diagnostic protocol for CLso.
- Engaging stakeholders, both industry and government, in the progress and decision making along the way. A steering committee for these activities will be formed, with its first meeting to be held on Friday 24 November.
The TTM phase of the response to TPP will be completed in May 2018.
AUSVEG National TPP Coordinator Alan Nankivell, whose activities are funded through a strategic levy investment under the Hort Innovation Potato – Fresh, Potato – Processing and Vegetable Funds, is a member of the steering committee. For more information on any part of the management plan, please contact Alan Nankivell at firstname.lastname@example.org.
|This project is funded by the the vegetable, fresh potato and processing potato research and development levies and contributions from the Australian Government. Hort Innovation is the grower-owned, not-for-profit research and development corporation for Australian horticulture.|
Industry update: A&D Weighing continue support for vegetable industry
AUSVEG is proud to announce the continuation of its Strategic Partnership with A&D Weighing, manufacturers of high-precision scales and balance equipment.
Founded in 1946 as Mercury Scales in Adelaide, A&D Weighing has grown to be an Australian leader in the supply of electronic weighing scales, balances, metal detectors, checkweighers and weighing systems. A&D Weighing’s range includes industrial scales, warehouse scales and weight capture software.
AUSVEG looks forward to working with the company for the benefit of the Australian vegetable industry, and A&D Weighing’s support will help AUSVEG’s public advocacy for growers and their interests.
For more information about A&D Weighing, please visit its website.
Assistance opportunity: Trial IPM on-farm as part of Hort Innovation project (SA)
The Integrated Pest Management (IPM) project run by AUSVEG SA and IPM Technologies will reach its final year in 2018, and the organisations are seeking interested vegetable growers who would like to run fully-supported trials of IPM on their properties.
Under the program, which is a strategic levy investment under the Hort Innovation Vegetable Fund, vegetable growers will be supported to implement IPM practices on their property using local advisors and national IPM experts.
Key results for growers under the trials conducted to date have included reduced pest pressures in key crops, reduced spray applications throughout growing seasons, and exceptional crop quality results and low crop damage.
Interested growers are encouraged to apply for trials under the program while places are available. For more information, contact AUSVEG SA State Manager Jordan Brooke-Barnett on 0404 772 308.
Project update: Tasmanian Women in Vegetables study tour and study group
Tasmanian women involved in vegetable production who are interested in being part of a study group focusing on vegetable businesses are invited to contact VegNET Tasmania.
The study group will support women who are interested in learning more, or sharing what they have already learned, about:
- Planning for the future
- Utilising supply-chain and market data
- Understanding domestic and/or export market development
- Product development and value-adding
VegNET Tasmania, which is being delivered by RMCG as part of a strategic levy investment under the Hort Innovation Vegetable Fund, is also planning a vegetable business study tour in Autumn 2018 to enable Tasmanian women to visit and learn from innovative businesses and research on mainland Australia.
Interested industry members can contact VegNET Tasmania Industry Development Officer Emma Egan on 0448 214 745 or at email@example.com.
Project update: 2018 Growing Leaders program applications now open!
Applications are now open for the 2018 Growing Leaders program!
Funded by Hort Innovation through a strategic levy investment under the Hort Innovation Vegetable Fund, Growing Leaders is the only national leadership and development program tailored for the vegetable industry. Participants will be involved in a nationally strategic project, and outcomes for participants focus on personal, business and industry change and management.
The content of the program ensures that participants are exposed to handling conflict, delivering effective communication, holding efficient meetings, high performance team building, managing change and negotiating the media.
Applications for the 2018 program are open until 15 January 2018. For more information, or to apply for the 2018 Growing Leaders program, please visit the Rural Training Initiatives website.
Industry update: Bundaberg grower Darren Zunker nominated for Syngenta Growth Award
Bundaberg grower Darren Zunker has been recognised as a regional winner in the Syngenta Growth Awards, and has been nominated as a finalist for a Syngenta Growth Award in the Productivity category.
Darren and his wife Linda have run Windhum Farms, a sweetpotato enterprise in Bundaberg, since moving away from sugar cane farming 16 years ago and their productivity with sweetpotatoes never comes at the expense of sustainable farming practices, quality farm management or inputs.
The use of variable rate spreading technology, efficient irrigation methods, careful selection of varieties and a rotation that sees paddocks given an 18-month break between sweetpotato crops is a recipe that has built a strong business. After starting out with less than 2ha, Darren now grows 65ha a year, and sends 100 pallets of sweetpotatoes across Australia each week.
For more information on Darren, see his profile as a Regional Finalist. For more information on the Syngenta Growth Awards, please click here. Winners of the Syngenta Growth Awards will be announced on 30 November.
Resource: New VegNET video – Spray technology for vegetable growers
Applied Horticultural Research (AHR) has produced a series of videos communicating research and development outcomes and giving growers practical information about important on-farm processes as part of the strategic levy investment project VegNET, which is part of the Hort Innovation Vegetable Fund.
In AHR’s spray technology video, spray application technology expert Scott Mathew explains the fundamentals of effective spray application for vegetable growers. He demonstrates easy and commonsense ways to test the water quality and (lack of) turbidity, how to manage water droplet size and density for thorough and even coverage of your crop, how to achieve optimum timings and how the application of water interacts with insecticides.
To watch this video, please click here.
Economic update: Packaging innovation
with retailers welcoming the operational efficiencies this enables, like easier shelf stacking, stock rotation and assured identification through barcoding.
Packaging also delivers convenience to consumers, including quick per-each pricing comparisons and smaller portions that are easy to grab and go. This helps satisfy consumer desires for convenience, as driven by the increasing frequency of shopping trips, which in turn leads to consumers looking to spend less time on individual trips. Growing consumer interest in food also means that they welcome the opportunity for consumer messaging on packaging.
These benefits and considerations are shaping vegetable packaging innovation. At the forefront we are seeing:
Laser labelling: This type of tattooing is suitable for vegetables with a skin, like pumpkins, capsicums and zucchini, and eliminates the need for identifying packaging such as stickers. Packaging technology that enables the quick identification of vegetable type, cut and variety is increasingly relevant for proprietary brands.
‘Tight bag’ systems: With international trade of fresh vegetables increasing, Ulma Packaging has developed an air-removal solution to reduce excess air in bags. This enables more packs per pallet and circumvents quality issues that can be arise from micro-perforation packaging.
‘See-through’ cans: McCall Farms in the USA recently launched a range of slow-cooked beans and pulses in transparent cans. This technology reinforces product quality and freshness attributes by enabling consumers to ‘see’ the product, and could be applied to other types of canned vegetables.
Vegetable by-products used in packaging: Waitrose UK has begun a pilot program with a new form of non-plastic punnets which are made from tomato leaves. With 74 per cent of MealpulseTM consumers signalling that they would like to recycle their fresh food packaging, this development is significant.
This article was provided by Freshlogic as part of a strategic levy investment under the Hort Innovation Vegetable Fund.
Project update: Food safety ‘supercharger’ arrives in Australia for Hort Innovation project
A custom-built produce sanitisation machine has arrived in Australia as part of a Hort Innovation project exploring the potential to use ‘supercharged air’ technology for food safety.
By applying an electric current to normal air, the machine creates supercharged air which can then kill microbial pathogens on the surface of produce without leaving chemical residue. After determining which fruit, vegetables and nuts are responsive to the treatment, the research team behind this project aims to ensure the killing of microbial pathogens does not compromise the quality and nutritional value of food.
HN15000 Supercharged air technology is funded by the Hort Frontiers Health, Nutrition & Food Safety Fund, part of the Hort Frontiers strategic partnership initiative developed by Hort Innovation, with co-investment from the NSW DPI and contributions from the Australian Government. This research is due for completion in 2021.
Event: Gippsland Women in Horticulture Advance (Ellinbank, VIC)
The first-ever conference for Gippsland Women in Horticulture is being held to explore three dimensions of horticultural production: water, waste and wellness.
The morning session for the event will be devoted to individual speakers addressing the whole conference on issues of leadership, wellness and collaboration, and the afternoon session will be a great opportunity for group discussions on key areas of interest like irrigation, organics, biosecurity, mental health, leadership, innovation and the new generation of horticulture.
Time/date: 10:00am–3:00pm, Thursday 23 November 2017
Location: DEDJTR Ellinbank, 1301 Hazeldean Road, Ellinbank VIC
Funding to facilitate this event has come through the VegNET project in East Gippsland as part of a strategic levy investment under the Hort Innovation Vegetable Fund. It is also being supported by the Commonwealth Bank, with attendees asked to contribute $30 per head to cover catering costs.
Survey: 2017 Global Innovations in Horticulture feedback form
Following the success of the 2017 Global Innovations in Horticulture Seminar, industry members now have the chance to have their say on presentations from the seminar, as well as on future content for the 2018 seminar.
The 2018 seminar will take place during Hort Connections 2018, and will be held at the Brisbane Convention Centre on 20 June 2018. This seminar will feature nine of the world’s top experts on topics relating to innovative horticulture tech and science, and is delivered by AUSVEG through a strategic levy investment under Hort Innovation’s Vegetable Fund.
Click here to have your say on the topics covered in the 2017 seminar and contribute to the future direction of the seminar.
Funded positions are available for vegetable levy paying growers to attend the event in 2018. Growers who are interested in attending or who are looking for further details can e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to express their interest in receiving a funded position.
Workshop: QFF flood recovery workshop (Bundaberg, QLD)
Growers in the Bundaberg region are encouraged to attend a Queensland Farmers’ Federation (QFF) Flood Recovery Workshop to hear from technical recovery experts who can assist in getting you back on your feet. Topics covered will include:
- Natural disasters in Queensland
- Soil science
- Energy efficiency
The Queensland Rural and Industry Development Authority (QRIDA) will be there on the day to discuss government assistance available to affected farmers.
Hort Innovation project opportunities
|Project code||Project title||Closing date|
|VG17005||Document discovery portal||5pm (Sydney time)
Friday 17 November 2017
Join Hort Innovation’s delivery partner mailing list to receive email notifications of new opportunities by registering through its delivery partner registration form.
The week’s top stories
- Victorian veggie grower Bill Bulmer elected as AUSVEG chairman (Good Fruit & Vegetables)
- Seasonal worker program popularity grows (Natalie Kotsios, The Weekly Times)
- Grateful Farmers: The former refugees who made a farming future in the Top End (Kristy O’Brien, ABC Landline)
- Dual citizen senators’ seats have been recounted — here are the replacements (ABC News)
- CSIRO 100th anniversary celebration of science success (Mike Foley, Good Fruit & Vegetables)
- Queensland Industry Energy Alliance launches with agricultural allies joining forces to tackle power prices (Kallee Buchanan, QLD Country Hour)
- Power shortage: Farms urged to exit the grid (Peter Hunt, The Weekly Times)
- Should we build solar farms on prime agricultural land? (triple j/Hack)
- Farmers squeezed as agribusinesses grows (Andrew Marshall, FarmOnline)
- Happy bees are back in business throughout Queensland following recent rainfall (Lara Webster and Renee Cluff, QLD Country Hour)
- Chaos over potential EU glyphosate ban (Gregor Heard, FarmOnline)
- Tasmania’s vegetable growers recovering from big wet (Roger Hanson, The Weekly Times)
- Facebook group gives regional Australian men safe space to seek support via social media (Robert Virtue, ABC News)
- Dinner celebrates potato industry while breaking records (Paula Thompson, Good Fruit & Vegetables)
- Centrelink ‘brick wall’ frustrates rural and remote Australians (Danielle Grindlay, ABC News)
- Bayer product provides stronger seedlings for Phong (Good Fruit & Vegetables)
- Grimme release SoftFlow potato combs (Sharon O’Keeffe, Good Fruit & Vegetables)