Tasmanian potato producers have worked up an appetite for new potato research and development (R&D) information, with close to 70 members of the Tasmanian potato industry set to attend a special R&D workshop to be held in Devonport on Wednesday night.  

“AUSVEG has received a record number of responses to the potato R&D workshop being held in Tasmania tomorrow evening. This indicates strong commitment from local industry members to learn about new ways of enhancing the efficiency and productivity of their operations,” said AUSVEG Special Projects Coordinator, Luke Raggatt.  

Arranged by AUSVEG as part of the Potato Industry Extension Program, the R&D workshop will be held tomorrow evening from 5:30pm-8:00pm at the Quality Gateway Hotel in Devonport. Tasmanian potato growers, processors, agronomists, researchers and supply chain representatives will be amongst those taking part.  

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

“AUSVEG is bringing together some of Australia’s leading agriculture experts, to speak with Tasmanian potato producers about a range of important issues facing the local sector,” said Mr Raggatt. 

“Issues to be covered at the workshop will include costs of production, disease management strategies, novel soil health practices and the need for effective biosecurity measures.” 

Joining the workshop to present are Mr Lance Davey from Macquarie Franklin – discussing business management strategies and gross margins tools; Mr Peter O’Brien of AgAims – who will lead a forum on current approaches to potato disease management; and Sheffield fresh potato grower, Mr Darren Long of MG Farm Produce – to discuss his successful use of bio-fumigant crops to improve soil health and suppress diseases in his paddocks. 

Mr Long will also host a ‘farm walk’ event at his Sheffield property the following morning, to provide workshop attendees with an opportunity to inspect the bio-fumigant crops that he is currently growing first-hand.      

“The record number of responses that AUSVEG has received for this workshop clearly indicates the strong level of interest and support that members of the Australian potato industry have for these kinds of valuable initiatives,” said Mr Raggatt. 

“By building knowledge and capacity right across the industry, AUSVEG is working to ensure that the long-term sustainability and competitiveness of the Australian potato industry remains secure.” 

The Potato Industry Extension Program is an industry-funded initiative that aims to raise awareness of R&D findings and agronomic activities, that could deliver strong benefits to growers and processors, if adopted. 

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