Home' Grower : July 2013 Contents The South Australian Grower – July 2013
Updated nursery biosecurity
throws pest net wider
working out how these outbreaks
have occurred so I guess it’s a
matter of understanding how the
fruitflies have gotten in,” she said.
APAL managing director Jon
Durham said dealing with fruitfly
outbreaks required a concerted
ef fort by the horticultural
“The industry needs to unite to
ensure there is a coordinated
ef fort to deal with the issue
which is critical for Australian
horticulture,” he said.
“Fruitfly not only damages the
quality of fruit but also damages
grower profits and can adversely
impact access to other export
“The Federal Government
needs to take the lead in tackling
the issue if it is serious about
protecting Australia’s food bowl.”
Mr Durham said fruitfly could
become an issue of the past if the
industry worked together.
“There has been some
investment into identifying
emerging technologies that have
the potential to eradicate fruitfly
in Australia but the issue needs to
be dealt with collaboratively as a
national priority,” he said.
He said a fall in the Australian
dollar would come as a relief to
growers looking to export.
“It will make exporting
products more viable as trade
normally occurs in US dollars
which will translate into more
Australian dollars for more
Australian growers,” he said.
Rivercorp Land and Water chief
executive officer Fergus
McLachlan said the devaluing $A
was a relief for growers as their
potential in overseas markets
“I think one of the major
concerns it has not really been
anything other than the fact that
our dollar has been very strong
for a ver y long time,” Mr
“As the dollar comes down,
things will get better. In the next
three to four months, there are
good indications that pink lady
expor ts will be stronger and that
will only improve or get better as
the dollar gets weaker.
“If the dollar devalues, we can
expor t to Europe or to Asia. We
are sending Granny Smiths into
Malaysia now, which we haven’t
Mr McLachlan said growing the
best quality fruit at the lowest
price for a kilogram was crucial.
“The market here is really
competitive for quality,” he said.
“I think things are going in the
right direction; growers are
producing very good quality fruit
CONSUMERS can expect good-
flavoured apples and exciting new
varieties this season.
Robert Green, Oakleigh Orchards
(pictured) said fruits were of high
quality this year and the long, dry
summer had spiked up sugar levels.
“Fruit should actually be of a
better flavour this year because of
that,” he said.
He said consumers could expect to
see more unique varieties.
“We had an earlier variety of fuji
that we put to market in the first
weeks of March and that was met
with a bit of enthusiasm,” he said.
“Obviously, growers are always
looking for something new that has
some potential. It is a risky business
because it’s a roll of the dice.
“Consumers don’t want to be
bored every time they go to the
shop, they want to try things new
and talk about something new.”
But Robert said new varieties were
a few years away, with plantings
taking place this winter.
“There are two or three new
varieties that are just becoming
available to the growers now,” he
Robert said more consumers were
keen to try out new flavours.
“There is certainly a group of
people that like things really sweet
but I think a lot of the younger
people, particularly those under 30
years old, probably have a bit of a
preference for something with a
flavour like pink lady,” he said.
He said old favourites no longer
had a place in the market if they
could not be on the shelf throughout
“Jonathon springs to mind – a
beautiful apple but people struggle
to get good ones, particularly later in
the year. Red delicious has suffered
a little bit the same,” Robert said.
breaks new ground
PLANT Health Australia has
launched an updated industry
biosecurity plan for the nursery
industry. It says it is one of the
most important biosecurity plans
it has developed given that
production nurseries supply stock
to many other plant industries in
The plan was launched at the
joint Nursery and Garden Industry
of Victoria and International Plant
Propagators Society Australia
Conference in Melbourne recently
by Plant Health Australia
executive director and chief
executive officer Greg Fraser, who
commended the dedication of the
industry to biosecurity.
Mr Fraser told delegates it was
essential for the Australian
nursery and garden industry to
minimise the risks posed by
exotic pests and to respond
effectively to any plant pest
threats, to ensure its viability and
sustainability, as well as that of
other plant industries.
“The industry is far broader
than the home gardener perceives
it to be,” he said.
“It supplies greenlife to a wide
array of end users including the
forestry sector, fruit orchardists,
cut flower and vegetable growers,
the revegetation and landcare
sector as well as landscapers.
“I’m pleased to say that the
Nursery and Garden Industry of
Australia takes biosecurity
seriously. This latest Industry
Biosecurity Plan is the third
version that has been prepared
and it’s just one in a hierarchy of
biosecurity documents that the
nursery and garden industry has
produced to better prepare itself
for pest incursions.”
The industry biosecurity plan is
principally designed for decision
makers. It provides the nursery
and garden industry with a
mechanism to identify exotic
plant pests as well as the
strengths and weaknesses in its
current biosecurity activities.
The plan was developed in
consultation with the Industry
Biosecurity Group, a select group
of plant health and biosecurity
experts. The group was
coordinated by PHA and included
representatives from Nursery &
Garden Industry Australia and
As part of the plan, a list of
more than 140 exotic plant pests
that pose a biosecurity threat
was developed. Each pest was
given an overall risk rating based
on four criteria: entry,
establishment, spread potential,
and economic impact. Through
this process, and further
consultation, the highest rated
pests were identified and
highlighted for future
surveillance, and on-site
biosecurity and awareness
activities. The plan also allows
the identification of any gaps in
biosecurity preparedness that
can be addressed in future.
Growers roll dice for fruit with potential
The nursery and garden industry does much more than commonly
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