AUSVEG welcomes the announcement of a partnership between Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation (QAAFI), the University of Queensland (UQ) and Bioseed Research India to conduct biosecurity research for management of tospoviruses in vegetables.
The partnership is worth more than $1.1 million, with research commissioned to map DNA sequences of tospoviruses present in Australia, and exotic tospoviruses that are a potential biosecurity risk to Australian and Indian vegetable growers.
“AUSVEG welcomes the announcement of this partnership between researchers from Australia and India into tospoviruses in vegetables,” said AUSVEG National Manager – Scientific Affairs Dr Jessica Lye.
“Outbreaks of exotic tospoviruses have the potential to be devastating to vegetable industries both in Australia and India.”
“It is encouraging to see that Australian researchers from QAAFI and UQ will be working with international counterparts from Bioseed Research India to develop management control strategies for tospoviruses that are listed as a high risk in the Australian Vegetable Industry Biosecurity Plan.”
AUSVEG is the leading horticultural body representing Australia’s 9,000 vegetable and potato growers.
The research objectives will also include use of novel tools to develop broad spectrum resistance to a number of tospoviruses in different vegetable crops, such as capsicum and chillies.
“This partnership will help to ensure that the Australian vegetable industry remains a global leader in biosecurity research, and will benefit the wider horticulture community of both countries,” said Dr Lye.
“In addition to exotic pest incursions, the management costs currently carried by growers in the fight to control outbreaks of endemic tospoviruses, such as Tomato spotted wilt virus, cannot be understated.”
“We are confident that this partnership will significantly benefit growers in Australia and India, and AUSVEG hopes to see more partnerships of its kind in the ongoing fight to keep Australian growing regions free from harmful pests and diseases.”
This research will be funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia using the National Vegetable Levy and funds from the Australian Government. 

Dr Jessica Lye, AUSVEG National Manager –
Scientific Affairs

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