Home' Grower : June 2012 Contents The South Australian Grower -- June 2012
Small growers remain
in danger of missing out
WHILE the almond industry is
thriving and expected to double in
size by 2014, growers are continu-
ing to feel the pressure from the
strength of the Australian dollar,
pests and production costs.
Craig Burdon (pictured), of
Burdon Orchards, says that
Riverland almond growers have
been subjected to a series of unfor-
tunate events, but remain hopeful
for next year's crop.
"We had a lot of mice damage
that brought tonnages right down
to probably half, less than 50 per
cent of what we usually expect," he
"Then we had rains which created
moisture in the almonds when we
picked them up, so we had a few
moisture problems as well.
"The low dollar brought our
returns down pretty well and this
year it is going to be similar prob-
lem ... (but) hopefully the dollar
will take a dive."
Craig said prices had been up and
down since the 1980s and with it
presently around $6 a kilogram
"you can get a pretty good return".
But he says smaller growers are
beginning to feel some pain.
"The current levels, if you've got
any reasonable level of debt, you
wouldn't be making very much at
all, if anything," he said.
Almond grower Neville Nattrass
said low prices "put little growers in
danger" and receiving anything
below $5/kg would barely allow
them to break even.
"At the moment, the almond
industr y is probably good -- people
are wanting almonds -- but the issue
is cost-of- production," he said.
"Bigger growers are probably
making money where smaller
growers, or someone with a little
bit of debt or overhead, has not got
a lot of leeway."
-- STEPHANIE GROPLER.
Olive harvest full bore
THE 2012 Australian olive harvest is
in full swing across the country and
early reports suggest that while
quality is high, the crop is expected
to be significantly smaller than in
recent years. Australian Olive
Association chief executive officer
Lisa Rowntree said growers across
the country were reporting a lot less
olives year. "Initial grower estimates
indicate that we could be looking at
a 40 per cent to 50pc crop reduction
across all growing areas compared
with to 2011. "There have been a
significant number of groves that
have been directly affected by
flooding in 2011 and 2012 and other
unseasonal weather conditions
which impacted fruit set, resulting in
a much lower fruit yield across the
Details: 08 8573 6545 or: 0407 736 070.
NZ increases exports
NEW Zealand increased its fruit and
vegetable exports by 3.1 per cent
last year, according to Horticulture
NZ, with a sales focus on Australia
helping to propel those figures. The
extra volume is worth $100 million
to the country, with fruit and
vegetable exports in total worth $3.3
billion in 2011. HortNZ chief
executive Peter Silcock says the
industry has seen a fivefold increase
in fruit and vegetable exports to
Australia in 10 years which shows
just how reliant that market has
become on high quality NZ produce.
Super idea, need water
IRRIGATORS have lambasted Prime
Minister Julia Gillard for promoting
the nation's potential as a regional
food superpower, saying her
remarks are "astounding". Since the
federal government plans to cut
water allocations to farmers in the
current Murray Darling Basin Plan.
NSW Irrigators Council chief
executive Andrew Gregson said Ms
Gillard's statements were at odds
with Water Minister Tony Burke's
draft Basin Plan, which calls for the
removal of 2750 gigalitres from
irrigators. "On the one hand we have
a Basin Plan to cripple irrigated
agriculture in the Murray-Darling
Basin, while on the other hand we
have a Prime Minister spruiking our
food production future, specifically
Mandies looking dandy
MANDARIN eaters will be the big
winners this season with reports
that growing conditions and
industry standards are helping put
top class produce on the shelves.
Better growing conditions this
season have allowed mandarins to
shine, according to chief execuitive
officer of Citrus Australia Judith
Damiani. "Aussie mandarins are
sweet, easy to peel and convenient,
high in anti-oxidants and vitamin C,
making them the perfect and
delicious health snack at school,
home or work during the winter
months," she said.
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Tas, SA &
Apply when buds are swelling but BEFORE AND WITHIN ONE WEEK OF BUD OPENING.
Commence post ｡owering applica ons 5 7 days a er petal fall is complete
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Tas, SA &
Apply at petal fall, and 6 and 12 weeks later.
Stone Fruit Blossom
Apply from late bud swell to early blossom
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