Specialists in crop disease management, plant nutrition and irrigation efficiency will be amongst the line-up of leading potato experts who will present at a research and development (R&D) workshop this week, in the Mallee town of Pinnaroo, South Australia.

The workshop has been arranged as part of the Potato Industry Extension Program, managed by AUSVEG, and aims to provide potato producers with a range of practical information on industry R&D, agronomic and production related issues. The workshop will be held tomorrow night from 5:30pm-7:30pm at the Golden Grain Hotel in Pinnaroo.

“With almost 40 members of the South Australian potato industry attending a similar workshop held last week in Mt Barker, it is clear that potato producers across the state have a strong interest in acquiring new information that could benefit their operation,” said AUSVEG Special Projects Coordinator, Luke Raggatt.

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

“Leading potato experts will participate in the workshop to discuss several key issues affecting producers operating in the unique conditions of the Mallee, with topics to include irrigation efficiency, soil salinity, Early blight disease and crop nutrition practices to achieve high quality potato skins,” said Mr Raggatt.

“These workshops aim to provide growers and processors with an opportunity to learn more about new industry research findings, and to discuss with fellow industry members ways to enhance their crop management and production practices,” said Mr Raggatt.

The workshop in Pinnaroo will be Chaired by young local potato grower, Sam Humphries, and will feature presentations from Mr Mark Skewes – Research Scientist (Drought Response) at the South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI); Mr Scott Mathew – Technical Services Lead at Syngenta; and Mr Matthew Wetherall – Agronomist at Yara.

“With some distinct potato growing conditions in the Mallee, the issues to be presented at the workshop will provide valuable information to the potato producers of the area, which if utilised, could deliver strong benefits to their operations,” said Mr Raggatt.

The Potato Industry Extension Program is an industry-funded initiative that aims to raise awareness of industry R&D and agronomy related activities in practical and accessible ways.

“AUSVEG is very pleased to facilitate these kinds of initiatives which serve as an important platform for keeping Australian potato producers at the cutting edge of new research findings and production practices that could boost their efficiency, productivity and competitiveness,” said Mr Raggatt.

Those interested in attending the workshop are requested to contact AUSVEG on (03) 9882 0277 or info@ausveg.com.au to register. The workshop will be catered and is 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: luke.raggatt@ausveg.com.au