AUSVEG Weekly Update

25-Oct-2016

Tuesday 25 October 2016

VegPRO - the vegetable industry’s own training initiative 


The Vegetable Industry Education and Training Initiative, known as VegPRO, is focusing on providing targeted training for upskilling people at all levels within the vegetable industry based on their specific needs.

RM Consulting Group (RMCG), which is delivering the initiative, has designed a short survey to help understand what training needs are within the vegetable industry, including the training needs of growing operations' staff and what growers need to help improve the profitability and efficiency of their businesses. To respond to the survey, please click here.

Interested parties can also follow the initiative's Facebook page or RMCG's Linkedin page. For more information about the VegPRO initiative, or to discuss your training needs as a member of the vegetable industry, please contact the project's dedicated coordinator Sophie Lapsley at sophiel@rmcg.com.au or on 0426 200 996.
VG15028 Vegetable Industry Education and Training Initiative is funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia using the National Vegetable Levy and funds from the Australian Government.


 
Consultation for Vegetable Strategic Investment Plan

As part of the process for producing a new Strategic Investment Plan (SIP) for the vegetable industry, Hort Innovation has engaged specialist consulting firm Consulting & Implementation Services (CIS). As part of this process they will meet with growers and industry to ensure the SIP accurately reflects how to best spend the R&D levy to maximise the industry’s funding priorities for the next five years.

Growers are encouraged to attend their local workshop so that they can have their say on where levy funding should be spent. These workshops provide one of the best opportunities available over the next five years to guide levy investment for the vegetable industry, and any grower interested in how their levy is spent is strongly encouraged to attend. The workshops will also provide a great opportunity to catch up with colleagues and hear about developments in the vegetable industry.

The locations for the Tasmanian and New South Wales consultations have now been confirmed. Workshops will be held in these areas in the coming weeks:

Tasmania:
Gateway Inn Hotel
16 Fenton St, Devonport TAS 7310
6.00pm - 8.00pm, Thursday 27 October

Mornington Inn
322 Cambridge Rd, Mornington TAS 7018
4.00pm - 6.00pm, Friday 28 October 

New South Wales:
Bathurst - 6.00pm - 8.00pm, Wednesday 2 November (Bathurst City Community Club, Bathurst)
Cowra - 3.30pm - 5.30pm, Friday 4 November (Cowra Agricultural Research and Advisory Station, Cowra)

RSVPs can be sent to veg@consultingis.com.au.

More detailed information for the confirmed workshops and locations and times for workshops in Western Australia, Northern Territory and Queensland will be published in the coming weeks.
This consultation is funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia using the National Vegetable Levy and funds from the Australian Government.


 
Toro Australia renew Strategic Partnership with AUSVEG

    

AUSVEG is pleased to announce that Toro Australia, a leading supplier of irrigation products to the agricultural industry, has renewed its support for the Australian vegetable industry.

Toro Australia provides turn-key solutions for agricultural crop management. A leading supplier of irrigation products, Toro is committed to providing innovative solutions alongside exceptional customer care, and first established a Strategic Partnership with AUSVEG in 2015.

AUSVEG looks forward to continuing to work with Toro Australia to ensure the vegetable industry benefits from their irrigation expertise through this partnership.

For more information on Toro Australia, please visit its website.

Managing white-fringed weevils

The white-fringed weevil (Naupactus leucoloma) is a major pest of potatoes in Australia. Grubs of this species live in the soil, where they can cause devastating damage to the roots and tubers of crops.

Intcreasingly, potato growers are relying on the application of pre-plant insecticide sprays to prevent white-fringed weevil grub damage. However, the application of such sprays may be unwarranted if densities of white-fringed weevil grubs are too low to cause economic damage.

To respond to this issue, Horticulture Innovation Australia funded a project, led by Associate Professor Geoff Allen of the Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture, that ran from 2011-14 and aimed to help Tasmanian growers accurately identify densities of white-fringed weevil grubs in their soil.

The project also aimed to determine how these grubs detect the presence of host-plant roots in the soil; however, the experimental evidence suggested that while the grubs can detect the presence of host-plant roots, they cannot distinguish between different types of host plants (such as lucerne and sorghum), meaning that researchers were not able to identify potential attractant or deterrent plants to help pest management.

A full profile on the project can be found in the latest edition ofPotatoes Australia magazine. To read this edition, please click here. To read all editions of Potatoes Australia, please click here.
PT09027 Improving management of white-fringed weevils in potatoes was funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia using the National Potato Levies and funds from the Australian Government.


 
Potato Strategic Investment Plan - survey online for industry comment

As part of the process for producing a new Strategic Investment Plan (SIP) for the potato industry, Hort Innovation has engaged specialist strategic planning consultancy McKINNA et al to meet with growers and industry to accurately reflect the industry’s funding priorities for R&D in the next five years.

A survey has been developed to let growers have their say on priority areas for levy investment in the potato industry. To take this survey online, please click here.

Interested parties can also click here to download a copy of the survey, or email strategicinsights@mckinna.com.au to have their voices heard.
This consultation is funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia using the National Potato Levy and funds from the Australian Government.


 
AUSVEG office closure - Tuesday 1 November

AUSVEG advises that its office in Melbourne will be closed on Tuesday 1 November, due to the Melbourne Cup public holiday in Victoria.

The Weekly Update for next week will be published on Wednesday 2 November.


 
AUSVEG VIC Annual General Meeting - 28 October
Further to formal notice previously provided to AUSVEG VIC members, an Annual General Meeting of the Members of Vegetable Growers Association Victoria Inc. (trading as AUSVEG VIC) will be held on Friday 28 October 2016 at Beletti, 159 Lonsdale Street, Dandenong.

Registration for the meeting opens at 4:00pm, with the meeting to commence at 4:30pm. 

Refreshments will be provided following the AGM, and presentations will be made by representatives of the National Vegetable Extension Network. AUSVEG VIC Strategic Partners and Associate Members are invited to attend these proceedings. 

If you wish to attend or need any additional information, please emailinfo@ausvegvic.com.au.


 
Hort Innovation Annual General Meeting – Nomination of proxies

The second Annual General Meeting (AGM) of Members of Horticulture Innovation Australia (Hort Innovation) will be held on 25 November 2016 in Sydney, New South Wales.

Voting Members of Hort Innovation who are unable to attend the AGM may appoint a proxy to attend and vote on their behalf at the meeting. The Notice of AGM and Proxy Form has been distributed by Hort Innovation to Voting Members this week by post and email.

An industry representative body (such as AUSVEG) may be appointed as a proxy if the Voting Member directs the body how to vote on each resolution at the AGM.

Any growers who are unable to attend the AGM may appoint AUSVEG as their proxy to ensure their votes are counted. If appointed as a proxy for any Voting Member, AUSVEG must vote on each resolution as the member directs. 

For more information on the upcoming AGM, including the resolutions to be considered at the AGM, please click here.


 
Cool, wet spring? Manage Onion maggot effectively 

Onion maggot (Delia platura), also known as seed corn maggot, is an agricultural pest that damages seeds and seedlings in a wide range of crops including corn, beans, onions, garlic, brassicas, potatoes and spinach. 

Reports of damage by this pest usually follow cool wet spring conditions. This fact sheet provides practical advice on the damage caused by Onion maggot, its life cycle, and the cultural, biological and chemical control options. There are also some tips for further reading. To download the fact sheet click here

To find out more about the Integrated Crop Protection project or protecting crops visit the website, or join the Community of Practiceonline. You can also follow the project on Twitter @ProtectingCrops.
This project is funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia using the National Vegetable Levy and funds from the Australian Government.


 
Researchers and industry unite in pollination campaign

Horticulture Innovation Australia (Hort Innovation) is coordinating a project to bolster pollinator populations and support the future of Australian horticulture.

Funded through a combined $12 million commitment with Western Sydney University (WSU) and Plant Food Research (PFR), with other projects and research partners coming online on an as-needs basis, Pollination Plus is a collaboration that aims to help industry explore current impacts on bee populations and identify how to pollinate more effectively using methods which may have been overlooked in the past.

Key topics of investigation will include understanding and managing bee threats, experimenting with non-traditional pollinators, and creating better conditions for pollinators. 

The project will be overseen by a dedicated Pollination Expert Advisory Panel, made up of representatives from Hort Innovation, WSU, PFR, Beechworth Honey, Costa Group, Select Harvest, Graeme Smith Consulting and Fruit Growers Tasmania. 

For more details on Pollination Plus, including more information on members of the advisory panel, please click here.
This project has been funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia Limited with co-investment from Plant & Food Research and Western Sydney University and funds from the Australian Government.


 
Masterclass to give insights into value-adding for fresh produce and food safety

A masterclass will be hosted in Hobart on Wednesday 30 November 2016 by two food safety research centres - the Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture Food Safety Centre, and the Fresh Produce Safety Centre Australia & New Zealand.

This masterclass will give food safety professionals, product technologists and food product entrepreneurs insights into tools which can be used to add value to fresh products and take their products into new categories.

Date/time: 9:00am - 1:00pm, Wednesday 30 November 2016
Location: Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture - Hobart campus

For more information on the event, please click here.


 
Australian Farmer Climate Survey

Australian Farmers for Climate Action is currently conducting a survey on farmers' attitudes and concerns about climate change.

To take this survey, please click here. Entrants to the survey go in the running to win a Beam Energy & Flex solar system and battery storage by Enphase for their farm (total value of approximately $15,000).


 
Webinar: How to manage Sclerotinia in vegetable crops with Dr Len Tesoriero

Learn the latest techniques in managing the soil borne disease Sclerotinia in vegetable crops including lettuce, brassicas and beans. Interact with leading vegetable pathologist, Dr Len Tesoriero, Senior Plant Pathologist, Department of Primary Industries NSW, to understand the latest techniques to save money and improve pack out rates.

Date: Thursday 27 October 2016
Time: 12:30pm - 1:30pm (AEDT)

Click here to register for the webinar.

To find out more about the Soil Wealth and ICP projects visit thewebsite, or join the Community of Practice online. You can also follow the projects on Twitter @SoilWealth and @ProtectingCrops.
The Soil Wealth is funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia using the National Vegetable Levy and funds from the Australian Government.


 
Webinar: Rediscovering cover crops

Cover crops are being rediscovered by vegetable growers as practical ways of improving soil productivity and health. While cover cropping is a simple concept, it can be complex to implement in today's intensive production systems. In this webinar, Dr Kelvin Montagu from the Soil Wealth - ICP team talks about the use of cover crops in vegetable production and the practical issues which need to be considered.

The webinar will cover:
  • What is your objective for the cover crop?
  • What cover crop to use
  • How to integrate cover crops into vegetable production
Date: Thursday 10 November 2016
Time: 12:30pm - 1:30pm (AEDT)

Click here to register for this webinar. For more information on this event, please click here.

In a follow-up webinar on Thursday 1 December 2016, Julie Finnigan, technical Agronomist with Serve-Ag in Tasmania, will look at the use of biofumigation cover crops in vegetable production.
The Soil Wealth project is funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia using the National Vegetable Levy and funds from the Australian Government.


 
AUSVEG in the media
AUSVEG Chairman Geoff Moar appeared on ABC Radio this week commenting on the impacts of recent severe weather on potato crops. Mr Moar noted that persistent rain has prevented many farmers across the Riverina region from harvesting and planting, leading to reduced supply of some crop commodities.

National Nutrition Week ran from 16 - 22 October 2016, with AUSVEG National Manager - Communications Shaun Lindhe appearing in print and on radio encouraging Australians to take the chance to eat more vegetables. Mr Lindhe noted that Australian Bureau of Statistics data shows more than 90% of the population fails to meets the recommended five or more servings of vegetables each day.

AUSVEG National Marketing Manager Nathan McIntyre appeared on radio this week discussing Australian Organic joining AUSVEG, PMA Australia-New Zealand and Onions Australia to co-host Hort Connections in Adelaide in 2017. Mr McIntyre noted the value of bringing different horticulture sectors together for the one, unified cross-industry event.
Communication of levy funded R&D activities is funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia using the National Vegetable Levy, National Potato Levy and funds from the Australian Government.


 
Weather Forecast - Wednesday 26 October

Please find below a weather forecast for Wednesday 26 October for key growing regions around Australia. To see a detailed forecast, please click the image.
 
  
 
This communication is funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia Limited using the National Vegetable Levy, National Potato Levy and funds from the Australian Government.