Members of the Victorian potato industry will hear from leading Australian potato experts on several key crop virus, disease and nutrition issues at a series of research and development (R&D) workshops to be held in Ballarat and Warragul next week.

Arranged as part of the Potato Industry Extension Program, managed by AUSVEG, the workshops will be held from 6:00pm-8:30pm at the Red Lion Hotel in Ballarat on 2 December, and the Warragul Club Downtowner on 3 December.

“Leading experts from across Australia will discuss a range of topics including Potato Virus Y (PVY), Pink Rot disease and new crop nutrition strategies, which are significant areas of interest for many Victorian potato producers,” said AUSVEG Special Projects Coordinator, Luke Raggatt.

AUSVEG is Australia’s leading horticultural body representing more than 2,000 potato growers.

“The workshops will provide Victorian potato growers, agronomists and processors with a valuable opportunity to hear about the latest research findings on these issues, and to discuss how these can be integrated into their crop management practices, directly with the experts,” said Mr Raggatt.

Joining the workshops to present are Plant Virologist at the Department of Agriculture and Food Western Australia (DAFWA), Ms Brenda Coutts; Senior Research Scientist at the South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI), Ms Barbara Hall; and National Agronomy Services Manager at Impact Fertilisers, Mr Andrew Olley.

“Growers are keen to hear from DAFWA’s Ms Brenda Coutts, who will discuss new research findings on PVY. As one of the most serious issues affecting seed potato industries worldwide, new information on PVY will undoubtedly be beneficial for Victorian growers,” said Mr Raggatt.

The Potato Industry Extension Program aims to raise awareness of R&D activities and outcomes, providing practical R&D information to Australian potato producers that could deliver strong benefits for their operations.

“Workshops such as these help to ensure that members of the Australian potato industry are kept right at the very forefront of new research findings, which if utilised, could increase the productivity and profitability of their businesses,” said Mr Raggatt.

“With the industry facing a host of challenges, growers are now more than ever looking to adopt new farming practices that will help make gains to their productivity, and ultimately, boost their long-term viability,” said Mr Raggatt.

Those interested in attending either of the workshops are requested to contact AUSVEG on (03) 9882 0277 or to register. The workshops will be catered and are free to attend for all potato levy payers and other industry stakeholders.

This project has been funded by HAL using the National Potato Levies and matched funds from the Australian Government.

MEDIA CONTACT: Luke Raggatt, AUSVEG Special Projects Coordinator
Phone: (03) 9882 0277, Mobile: 0403 827 822, Email: