Home' Grower : April 2013 Contents The South Australian Grower -- April 2013
apples, pineapples and potatoes
from certain countries.
Mr Lawrenson warns that the
consequences of the quarantine
changes have not even been felt
yet in the apple industry.
"We haven't seen the impact of
imports yet and we simply don't
know what effect they will
have," he said.
William Churchill says his
organisation is concerned about
the impact of overseas imports.
"The ABARES report, while
looking positive, seems to hide
some of the real underlying
threats our industr y is facing,"
he said, citing the closure in
recent weeks of Windsor Farms,
Rosella, and Mondello Farms.
Mr Churchill points to the
handouts the automotive indus-
try gets from government, and
wants the government to be as
proactive towards the vegetable
growing and processing sectors.
"The concern from many in
the industry is about how many
farmers will be able to continue
operating in the current cli-
mate," he said.
"More and more of our food is
being sourced from overseas
sources. In Tasmania, in particu-
lar, growers supplying the veg-
etable processing industry there
are facing a crisis of competitive-
"While some of these figures
are painting a rosy outlook with
big numbers, it is little comfort
for the producers who are clos-
ing their businesses."
Details: Horticulture Australia 02 8295
2300 or www.horticulture.com.au
Total cash receipts (2010--11)
Average per farm
NSW Vic Qld SA WA Tas Aust
Monster pistachio harvest on its way
ABARES predictions of a massive spike
in tree nut production growth come as
no surprise to nut producer Graham
Brookman, who runs Food Forrest.
"It's been a very dry summer with no
real fungal disease, which means our
pistachio harvest will be an absolute
monster," he said.
Since 1983, Graham and wife
Annemarie have grown pistachios,
pecans, almonds, walnuts and a
variety of other fruit and vegetables on
their 15-hectare property. He says the
harvest will come as a boon to nut
growers who have been doing it tough
in recent years, particularly in 2011
when disease wiped-out many crops.
Graham says the nut industry growth
is riding on the back of managed
investment schemes that planted
thousands of hectares of nut trees that
are now beginning to bear crops.
Although he is confident about the
short and medium term future for
growers, Graham worries that climate
change will make pistachio farming
unviable in years to come, bringing
more wet summers like the one that
devastated his 2011 crop.
He says warmer winters will be a
problem too, with the simultaneous
bursting of male and female flowers
likely to diminish to the point where
the dominant female variety no longer
produces commercial pistachio crops.
"Under current IPCC predictions, the
female making up over 98 per cent of
Australian plantings will become
useless within a decade or two," he
"Not to mention there are enormous
changes due for the Murray-Darling
river system -- if that falls over, it all
"Our approach is to look at food
security seriously -- we're on the edge
of the city and use 250 cubic metres
of urban and green waste annually."
Food Forrest irrigates just 7ha of its
land which produces enough revenue
to employ four people.
"We market all our stuff at the
Adelaide Showground Farmers
Market, which means we get most of
the profit instead of it going into
packaging and our friends at
Woolworths and Coles," Graham said.
Details: 08 8522 6450 or
-- MAX OPRAY
Nut producer Graham Brookman with the production waste that will be
put to good use as compost.
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