Vegetable growers and industry leaders from across the country met this week in Melbourne to take part in Design Team meetings to guide over $10 million of vegetable levy fund investment over the next twelve months.

“The recently published vegetable industry’s Strategic Investment Plan (SIP) recommended the development of three Design Teams to help direct Research and Development (R&D) levy investment with matched funds from the Australian Government, in line with new industry Strategic Priorities,” said AUSVEG Design Team Coordinator, Courtney Burger.

AUSVEG is the National Peak Industry Body for Australia’s 7,000 vegetable growers.

“The high calibre of members participating in the meetings ranged from vegetable growers, to supply chain members and retailers. It was this wealth of knowledge and experience that enabled the meetings to be very productive and provided an unprecedented level of foresight and direction for the industry,” said Miss Burger.

The Design Teams met earlier this week from 6-8 August, to provide guidance on the investment of levy funds by developing R&D projects which address information gaps and will help direct the industry towards a more viable and profitable future.

Each of the three Design Teams aligns to one of the Strategic Priorities of the SIP: ‘Consumer Alignment’, ‘Market and value chain development’ and ‘Farm Productivity, Resource Use and Management’.

“On Monday the Consumer Alignment Design Team met to discuss what future research needs to be conducted in order to provide vegetable growers with a deeper insight into the mindset of Australian consumers. This will enable growers to deliver products that best meet consumers’ expectations, bringing more value to customers and greater profit margins to growers.”

“The Market and Value Chain Development Design Team met on Tuesday to determine how the industry R&D program can help to open new markets and expand existing markets for Australian vegetables and to help growers add value to their business within both the domestic and international markets.”

“The last group to meet was the Farm Productivity, Resource Use and Management Design Team, which focused on what research is needed to give growers the tools to improve on-farm production efficiencies, by addressing issues such as the rising costs of inputs including labour, the effects of variable climates, water and soil shortages, and emerging pests and diseases.”

“These meetings are a prime example of vegetable growers successfully working with industry and the supply chain to have their say in the investment of the vegetable levy and the future direction of the industry,” said Miss Burger.

The meetings were facilitated by AUSVEG in conjunction with Horticulture Australian Limited (HAL).


MEDIA CONTACT: Courtney Burger – Design Team Coordinator, AUSVEG, Phone: (03) 9822 0388,
Mobile: 0439 784 890, Email: