Home' Grower : March 2013 Contents The South Australian Grower -- March 2013
"We plant with row-spacing's
of four metres and tree spacings
of 1.5m so essentially we are
looking at 1660 trees per hectare
compared to traditional spacings
which is between 300 and 500
trees per ha," he said.
Mr Crowe said olives could be
har vested with a standard grape
har vester and growers could
expect a consistent yield with the
variety selection and spacing
mechanisms being followed.
"The last three years have really
been an uphill battle for us but
then it has been a hard slog to
tr y and educate people on what
has been happening around the
world," he said.
"It takes time for people to
change systems and varieties and
accept what other people have
While the industry seems to be
improving, Mr Crowe said it had
been tough for many growers for
"People have used up all their
reser ves. There are a lot of
people getting out," he said.
Mr Crowe said 80pc of those
in the industry were boutique
growers who were finding it hard
to compete with those running
large, commercial enterprises.
"A lot of our small growers
make their labels and they will
sell it within a 50 kilometre
radius of where they are. And we
are seeing a lot of those guys
dwindle out of the industry," he
Details: To find out more about high-
intensity olive groves, call Damian
Crowe 08 8541 3600.
Smaller growers squeezed out
THE olive industry is expected to have
a promising season but high prices
and growing demand seem to have
come a bit too late for many small
Renmark growers Stephen and
Jackie Knight have been in the
industry for 15 years. But times have
changed and they have begun the
process of downsizing their four-
hectare olive grove.
"We didn't want to put vines in and
we didn't want to put in stonefruit,"
"We put in the olives and that was
hopefully going to be our
"But we've cut down about 80 trees,
just because of the fact that we can't
The Knight family's own label --
Knightsgrove -- is renowned for its
high-quality oil sold to local
restaurants, supermarkets and
"The good thing about our product,
that everyone likes, is that we harvest
about four times a year," Stephen
"We use a small shaker, and when
we shake them, the stuff that is ready
to drop will drop straight away. This
gives us the pick of the best quality
from the trees."
Jackie said growers who owned
their own label often found it difficult
to find their niche.
"There are only so many areas in
the Riverland that you can get into,"
Another local grower, Brian Mason,
sells his olive oil from his shed door at
Barmera. He said it was the only way
to make a profit from his remaining
"We are getting more than if we sold
it on the open market -- we just keep
a few for local consumption," he said.
"They aren't worth anything so what
do you do? We don't want to make a
lot of money, just something to help
Both growers urge consumers to
check labels, buy Australian olive oil,
and shop locally.
Agromillora nursery manager Damian Crowe at his high-intensity grove
where olives are harvested with a standard grape harvester.
Stephen and Jackie Knight in
their Renmark olive grove with
the oil they sell locally.
Lenswood takes bite of Rockit
LENSWOOD Apples has become the
exclusive licensee for Rockit, an
exciting new apple set to invigorate
the apple category and attract new
Lenswood Apples is now offering
growers throughout Australia an
opportunity to work with them to
grow this market-defining new
Lenswood Apples general
manager James Walters believes
the Rockit apple will be a category
leader within a few short years.
"It's a completely unique, small
red apple -- sweet, crisp and
bursting with juice on first bite --
and it presents distinctively right
down to its innovative packaging,"
Mr Walters said.
Rockit was launched
internationally by Havelock North
Fruit Company in 2010 after being
in development for many years.
Havelock managing director Phil
Alison says they carefully selected
Lenswood Apples to bring Rockit to
quality Australian growers.
"Together we understand the
appeal of this perfectly sized snack
sensation as an alternative to
processed convenience foods such
as chips and chocolate," he said.
"Young and affluent markets in
particular are looking for healthy
choices and Rockit is beautifully
packaged to make it an easy pick."
Rockit trees are already well
advanced in Australian trials and
the first tree stock will be available
at the end of this year.
Significant plantings are
projected for Lenswood in the
following two years with full
commercial production forecast for
There is now a limited
opportunity to become involved in
the growing of Rockit in additional
high quality growing regions
around Australia and expressions
of interest can be directed to
Details: Information packs are avail-
able to interested growers and
enquiries can be made at rock-
email@example.com or 08 8389
apples are marketed
as a ready snack
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