Tropical pests and diseases like Mosaic virus and Downey mildew are as dangerous to horticulture production as crocodiles and malaria are to humans.

Northern Territorian growers are urged to attend a free upcoming seminar which will address issues involving tropical pests and diseases in vegetable production, being held in Darwin next Monday.
“Biosecurity plays a pivotal role in the viability of the domestic vegetable industry and this seminar will be crucial in providing growers with the information and direction they need to help combat outbreaks,” said AUSVEG Communications Officer, Hugh Gurney.
AUSVEG is the National Peak Industry Body representing 9,000 of Australia’s vegetable and potato growers.
Leading researchers, key members of the horticulture industry and specialists in the field of tropical pest and disease management will be speaking at the seminar, which will be held at the Darwin Convention Centre on Monday 26th March from 9am – 5pm.
“The seminar will be an important event through which growers and members of the industry can better understand the risks posed by pests and diseases and thus be better equipped to pre-empt, avoid or respond to these challenges,” said Mr Gurney.
The speakers will include: Denis Persley from the Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation (DEEDI), and Brain Thistleton and Barry Conde from the Northern Territory Department of Resources (DoR), all of whom will discuss topics including entomology, virology and on-farm remedies.
“The participation of leading and highly respected specialists in this seminar is not only an indication of the seriousness of the threat faced by growers, but also an encouraging reminder of the collaborative efforts being made by industry to safeguard our local producers,” said Mr Gurney.
“Vegetable production accounts for a substantial amount of return within the Australian agricultural industry, but growers are continually hampered by pests and diseases which undermine the viability of their crops.”
“This seminar is about safeguarding the future of the industry by disseminating innovative research to growers which can then be implemented practically on-farm,” said Mr Gurney.
This project has been funded by HAL using the National vegetable levy and matched funds from the Australian Government.
MEDIA CONTACT: Hugh Gurney – Communications Officer, AUSVEG Phone: (03) 9822 0388, Mobile: 0410 047 432, Email: