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VOL. 55 NO 4. SUMMER 2020 $25.00 (inc GST)

wa

grower WORKING FOR WA GROWERS SINCE 1948

Measuring performance of the food safety management system

Employers face jail, millions in fines as industrial manslaughter becomes law in WA This issue of the WA Grower is brought to you by vegetablesWA together with: • APC — Vegetable Producers Committee • Potato Growers Association • Pomewest • WA Citrus • Stonefruit WA

Industry acts as Gingin water supply tightens.

Reducing food safety risks from manures


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inside Your vegetablesWA magazine

34 YOUR INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION vegetablesWA CEO’s Report vegetablesWA President’s Report YOUR PRODUCTION Queensland fruit fly response

3

Precision ag in vegetables

49

Labour 82

4

Internal audits

50

Reaching our citrus fans

83

5

Freshcare Releases FSQ4.2

52

Afourer canopy management

84

Remote audit activities

53

GFSI 2020 and food safety?

54

VegNET RDO Summer Update

56

7 8

Soil biology and weed management 10 European wasp program success

14

WA POTATOES

Summerfruit Annual Report

88

Grower profile: Sebastian Fiolo

90

Reducing food safety risks

22

SmartSpud™ testing underway

61

Hygiene practices

26

Grower profile: Julian Ackley

62

Resistance to ZYMV

29

WA Potatoes Marketing 2021

65

33

Food safety management system

34

System to track labour

36

YOUR INDUSTRY

37

Resilience retained 38 Horticulture mandatory training

40

Gingin water supply tightens

42

Changes to minimum wages

45

New quad bike regulations 46 Industrial manslaughter in WA

48

Seed for Schools 65

POMEWEST

Value Chain Facilitator Update 86

59 60

Grilled Kipfler potato salad

85 87

Executive Officer’s Report

Permits 116

STONEFRUIT WA Good Choice Campaign

Fall armyworm detected near Gingin 18

TOOL TIME

108

94

66

YOUR BUSINESS

91

Do you need a business plan?

92

Help is available

94

Managing your overheads

96

Managing and preventing heat stress 98

67

VegNET WA Strategy

100

Pomewest Executive Manager

68

New dispute resolution service

102

Strategic Plan 2021–25

70

Is overseas labour the right move

104

Annual Grower Dinner Meetings

71

Tassone Orchard

72

Fair pay — let’s get it right

74

Promotional activities

76

Apple pests and export markets

78

WA CITRUS

79

From the Chair

80

In the orchard

81

YOUR MARKET

107

Blockchain traceability 108 Export Facilitators Project update 110 VIETNAMESE TRANSLATIONS WA vegetable growing businesses 114

WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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VOL. 55 NO 4. SUMMER 2020

WORKING FOR WA GROWERS SINCE 1948


YOUR CONTACTS

contacts vegetablesWA

Management Committee

702–704 Murray Street, West Perth WA 6005 t: (08) 9486 7515 e: office@vegetableswa.com.au

President Dan Kuzmicich m: 0408 910 761

Chief Executive Officer John Shannon m: 0488 111 526 e: john.shannon@vegetableswa.com.au Editor Amber Atkinson t: (08) 9486 7515 e: amber.atkinson@vegetableswa.com.au COVER IMAGE: The Loose Leaf Lettuce Company, Gingin: Abbey Crossley, Ashby Farm 2IC; Laura Dobra, QA Manager; Zoe Norwell, Processing Supervisor/Accounts Assistant; Baylee Deaton, Sativa Farm 2IC; Justine Jacques, Processing Manager; Bianca Jacques, Processing Manager; Deanne Joubert, OH&S Manager/Waste Management Officer; and Simone McLean, Accounts Manager; see page 38.

Published by vegetablesWA This issue of the WA Grower is brought to you by: • vegetablesWA • APC — Vegetable Producers Committee • Potato Growers Association • Pomewest • WA Citrus • Stonefruit WA © 2020 All articles and other material published in this magazine is vegetablesWA copyright (unless otherwise stated) and may not be reproduced in part or full without the written permission of the authors and publisher. DISCLAIMER: vegetablesWA make no representations and expressly disclaims all warranties (to the extent permitted by law) about the accuracy, completeness, or currency of information in WA Grower. Reliance on any information provided by vegetablesWA is entirely at your own risk. vegetablesWA is not responsible for, and will not be liable for, any loss, damage, claim, expense, cost (including legal costs) or other liability arising in any way, including from any vegetablesWA or other person’s negligence or otherwise from your use or non-use of WA Grower, or from reliance on information contained in the material or that vegetablesWA provide to you by any other means.

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WA Grower SUMMER 2020

Operations Manager Karen Raybould t: (08) 9486 7515 e: karen.raybould@vegetableswa.com.au Regional Development Officer Truyen Vo m: 0457 457 559 e: truyen.vo@vegetableswa.com.au Regional Development Officer Sam Grubiša m: 0427 373 037 e: sam.grubisa@vegetableswa.com.au Benchmark Lead Bryn Edwards m: 0417 409 821 e: bryn.edwards@vegetableswa.com.au Quality Assurance Coordinator Joel Dinsdale m: 0417 857 675 e: joel.dinsdale@vegetableswa.com.au Export Development Project Lead Manus Stockdale m: 0448 897 652 e: manus.stockdale@vegetableswa.com.au Labour Scheme Facilitator Melissa Denning m: 0477 477 044 e: melissa.denning@vegetableswa.com.au

Life Members

A.J. Anderson*, D.J. Arbuckle, J. Arbuckle Snr*, J.H. Arbuckle* (M.B.E.J.P), H.R. Ashby*, S. Calameri, M. Dobra, A. Harris*, A. Ingrilli, G. Kiriros*, R.G. Leach*, F. Natoli, S. Sawle*, R.M. Schultz, C.P. Stevens, W.R. Stevens* (M.B.E.J.P) and J. Turley. * Deceased

Carnarvon

Vice President Maurice Grubiša m: 0413 050 182 Metro North Committee Lauren East

m: 0419 047 371

Paul Glavocich

m: 0413 922 287 Metro South

Peter Ivankovich m: 0428 919 211

Manjimup Myalup

Michael Le

m: 0417 962 427 Metro North

Anthony Lieu

m: 0401 558 886 Metro North

Paul Shain

m: 0419 041 045

Carnarvon

Agricultural Produce Commission APC Manager Ingrid Behr t: (08) 9368 3127 e: APCManager@dpird.wa.gov.au

Advertising For information on WA Grower advertising rates and sizing please go to: www.vegetableswa.com.au/wa-growersmagazine and click on the download media kit link.


YOUR INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION

your

industry association

Your industry association

WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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vegetablesWA

CEO’s Report T

BY JOHN SHANNON CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, VEGETABLESWA

his time last year I could never have predicted the turn of events we’ve witnessed in 2020. The implications of COVID-19 on our industry has been immeasurable, but through it all you have kept supermarket shelves lined with the very best fresh produce Western Australians expect. As an industry we had to adapt fast and I couldn’t be prouder of the resilience you’ve shown. As the virus entered WA in February we were thrust into quarantine and immediately faced uncertainty around key inputs such as labour, chemicals and fertiliser.

As we braced for the worst, demand for fresh WA vegetables actually increased as the public sought to improve their health by increasing their consumption of local produce. We are arguably the luckiest of all states, having avoided community spread of COVID-19 since April 11. And while national borders are opening, and we welcome the freedoms we have become accustomed to here in Australia, access to labour remains one of the biggest challenges our industry has faced. Backpacker numbers have reduced by almost 60 per cent since the start of the pandemic. The workforce simply does not exist in Australia, at this point in time.

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WA Grower SUMMER 2020

We don’t have enough workers for our farms to operate at pre-COVID capacity and it is taking its toll. Labour has been, and remains, the top priority for me and the entire vegetablesWA team. At the start of November, all major Australian states had restarted the Seasonal Worker Programme and Pacific Labour Scheme, and most had plane loads of workers either on the ground or scheduled to arrive.

Our labour scheme facilitator, Melissa Denning, has worked tirelessly to make this happen. She has been relentless in bringing hort industry members, Federal and State government departments together to keep the wheels turning in the labour space.

Merry Christmas and safe New Year.

We had been actively lobbying to get these programmes reengaged, so it was a great relief when the McGowan Government announced we would be following suit here in WA.

I sent out a press release urgently calling on the WA Government to finalise quarantine arrangements and initially there were discussions about workers from Vanuatu completing quarantine at the Northern Territory, Howard Springs facility. In late November we celebrated the news that two plane loads of workers had been secured and will fly directly into WA.

3 DEMAND for fresh WA vegetables increased as the public sought to improve their health.

We have a long way to go, but flights carrying workers from Vanuatu are confirmed to arrive in Perth in late December and early January.

We will continue to keep you updated as more information comes to hand, but I really encourage you to contact Melissa if you would like to find out more information about the Seasonal Worker Programme and Pacific Labour Scheme. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of the vegetablesWA team for their hard work over the past year. To growers and stakeholders, I would like to wish you all a Merry Christmas and safe New Year. MORE INFORMATION John Shannon, phone 0488 111 526 or email john.shannon@vegetableswa.com.au


YOUR INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION

vegetablesWA

President’s Report BY DAN KUZMICICH PRESIDENT, VEGETABLESWA

A

s I write this, my final report of the year, I almost can’t believe that the year is almost over. In Carnarvon we are noticing most of the tourists are now moving South and the town is becoming quieter. We have had unusually cool conditions both here, and around the State in general, which has been optimal for the plants as it limits heat stress that is typical at this time of the year.

Pollination has been high, which means the plant crop has remained consistent during harvest. Reviewing market prices is a good measurement in understanding how the industry and individual businesses are tracking, and this year they continue to remain buoyant. Some lines are stronger than others, but generally fresh food across the board is traveling well, with the consumer valuing fresh food, particularly during the pandemic.

We are all looking for a ‘window of opportunity’, so taking advantage of low supply and high demand is an optimal situation for any grower.

It is also pleasing to know that grower businesses all over the State are collaborating, as the labour issue affects multiple commodities.

Identifying that perfect storm is easier said than done, especially considering the high risks involved with growing, but keeping a constant supply of premium product is essential.

I would like to thank in particular Maureen Dobra of Loose Leaf Lettuce Company for being a major driver in this practise.

Is luck involved? Possibly, but having a fluid approach to your business and understanding your position puts you in an ideal place to ‘roll with the punches’. Labour still remains an issue and securing your workforce will always be a priority. Being a ‘good employer’ that looks after and nurtures their staff is a good start.

She has referred and recommended two of her former workers to come North to our business and they are doing really well here.

Labour still remains an issue and securing your workforce will always be a priority.

Making sure you are paying the correct wages, in line with your respective awards, prioritising safety and correct induction processes are key. Acts of positive reinforcement and progression opportunities also help. Our business is looking at taking up the Seasonal Worker Program, as we are anticipating that the current labour situation will continue to challenge the industry for some time. Melissa Denning at vegetablesWA is helping us with that process, and I recommend that if you are thinking along the same lines you get in touch with her as her expertise are second to none.

Maureen is a one of the most supportive and dedicated advocates in our industry and we really appreciate her efforts.

As most growers in our region prepare for the end of harvest season, it is great to report that our tomato growers have had a good result both with prices and an overall improvement of quality. Particularly as growers have been managing the tomato spotted wilt virus, which was doing a lot of damage to the crop earlier in the season. Our rockmelon growers have now begun their season in the Gascoyne and some have been impacted by the virus. The long-term effects remain to be seen, but in the meantime the prices remain sound and steady.

WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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YOUR INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION

Capsicum growers, like myself, have done well too. Production yield has been high and the prices have remained high for us. Having a good year is a positive thing and reminds us why we are still in this game. Metro capsicum growers have just started picking and it looks like the prices will stay at this level; I wish them all the best for their coming season. The fall armyworm is still in town and a cause for concern with our corn growers. I have been keeping a close eye on our property, but it seems it loves corn and so far is staying away from capsicums and eggplants. Still, this pest is fast moving, and I believe it has recently been found in Gingin. When I spoke with Jim Trandos of Trandos Farms, he said the worm has had little to no impact on his corn farm just outside of Broome. This was surprising, but he explained that his team were able to manage the damage with their processing methods. He’s had a win with corn prices; however, he informs me that his beans have not been so profitable. I have recently been advised, in a friendly chat with Rohan Prince at WA Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD), that the Queensland Fruit Fly (Qfly) eradication program is progressing well. We appreciate that the State Government has invested a significant amount of funding to manage the outbreak and takes us back to ‘area freedom’ for our market access requirements.

DPIRD have been dedicated to this outcome, setting up their headquarters at the Claremont Showgrounds and monitoring the identified zones to clean up the outbreak. Rohan seems confident of eradicating the pest from the infected area and hinted at plans to release sterile male Qfly in mid-December, to help them reach their goal of eradication. I am sure, like me, you would all be very pleased and relieved that this is the case and is a good example of the service to industry by the Department.

Well done to the Gascoyne Food Council team for their consistent success with this event. The next day I had the pleasure of continuing the celebrations while attending the Carnarvon Cup race day. WA Agriculture Minister Alannah MacTiernan and Vince Catania MLA were there to judge the Fashions on the Field. No, I did not win the fashion stakes and no, did not pick a horse either, but people came from far and wide to enjoy both events, which was really great.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

I had the opportunity to catch up with Rohan in late November for the opening of the new Cravo Greenhouse, recently erected at the Carnarvon Research Station, which is another exciting development for the region and the hort industry in general.

We look forward to our association and the continued support of DPIRD in the future as we move into 2021. The social scene in general has been quiet this year, as expected, however I did partake in the Long Table Twilight Dinner back in September. This again was a huge success but a little cold with the wind. The move in times was a welcome change, but the daytime sun certainly makes the event more enjoyable. Either way, it’s a must-do event and showcases the region perfectly.

I would like to wish all of our growers and industry stakeholders all the best over the festive season.

I would also like to thank the vegetablesWA management committee, our CEO John Shannon, and all the wonderful staff at vegetablesWA for your hard work and commitment during this difficult year. Again, growers, if you require any help with any aspect of the vegetable growing business, please don’t hesitate to contact these people as they are all capable and committed to helping and providing service to our industry. On that note, I hope you all have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and please stay safe over the New Year period. MORE INFORMATION Contact Dan Kuzmicich on 0408 910 761 or damir.kuzmicich@bigpond.com

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YOUR PRODUCTION

your

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YOUR PRODUCTION

DPIRD’s Queensland fruit fly response tracking well

T

he Queensland fruit fly (Qfly) eradication program in Perth’s western suburbs is tracking well with no Qfly found for more than two months.

Impact to economy

The Qfly outbreak was declared by the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) in late March.

WA’s Area Freedom from Qfly, which underpins market access for a range of produce is essential to ensure produce can be exported without treatment or other protocols being followed.

Qfly response personnel have visited more than 13,000 individual properties and identified over 250,000 Qfly host plants. The eradication program recently saw its response personnel conduct their 120,000th Qfly property inspection. The largest outbreak since WA’s first Qfly incursion in 1989, Qfly has been eradicated in Perth seven times since 1989, most recently in Como and Fremantle in 2018.

WA’s commercial fruit and vegetable industries are valued at approximately $1.083 billion annually. It is vital for WA’s horticultural industries, and also for home gardeners growing Qfly host plants, that DPIRD eradicates Qfly.

It would also make it more difficult for gardeners to grow fruiting plants in their gardens.

What has been happening with the response lately? In mid-September, DPIRD established a Forward Command Post at Claremont Showground, which lies within the Quarantine Area (QA). This has allowed the Qfly operations team to more efficiently conduct the intensive Qfly baiting and surveillance program, known as the Spring baiting program.

No Queensland fruit fly found for more than two months.

A DPIRD cost benefit analysis has shown that loss of freedom from Qfly will cost WA $38 million per year. A change in Qfly pest free status would impact the international export of avocados, table grapes and strawberries to markets such as Japan that rely on WA’s freedom from Qfly. The suspension of domestic or international trade, and any increased phytosanitary treatment costs, would place an additional burden on industry.

This move provides the Qfly operations team with adequate space to complete important operational activities such as bait mixing whilst increasing office space and car parking. These facilities have also provided significant advantages in reducing Occupational Health and Safety risks. The operation is a priority for DPIRD with significant resources allocated to the incident. Approximately 350 personnel have been employed, including nine Royal Agricultural Society of WA staff who have been unable to work on activities related to the Perth Royal Show. Field work has been conducted by up to 124 teams requiring 153 vehicles, 163 smart phones for data entry, personal protective equipment, baiting equipment, sample kits and paperwork.

3 QFLY response personnel viewing the latest data from the field.

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WA Grower SUMMER 2020

Field teams commence at 6.45am daily, with the last of the field teams finishing at 5.30pm. Several teams have been working on Saturdays to schedule visits where residents are unavailable during the week.


YOUR PRODUCTION

Residents are asked to comply with Quarantine Area requirements. 3 JAMES Everett and Jocelyn Everett, of Dalkeith, with Qfly surveillance officers Michelle Chami and Adeline Blin.

With visits being conducted weekly, Qfly personnel and their vehicles have become a common sight around the QA. In addition to baiting, an essential part of eradicating Qfly continues to be educating residents about the movement, management and disposal of host fruit. Residents are asked to comply with QA requirements which include not taking host fruit outside the QA unless it has been cooked, frozen for 24 hours or solarised. Residents are also encouraged to practice good garden hygiene by picking all ripe or ripening host fruit from trees and plants and picking up any fallen host fruit every three days and treating it before disposal. The results of the operation are tangible with no Qfly detected since 10 August, 2020 and no larval detections since 15 September.

3 QFLY surveillance officer Michelle Chami applying a spot of bait to a tree.

Next steps The final stage of the eradication program is to release Sterile Insect Technique (SIT) Qfly in the QA.

Releasing these sterile Qfly ensures the eradication of any remaining Qfly in the QA as the sterile Qfly will mate with any remaining Qfly, resulting in no offspring. Sterile Qfly will be sourced as pupae from the SITPlus factory at Port Augusta, South Australia.

These pupae will be reared to adulthood in WA, following the emergence the sterile adults will be released throughout the QA using a purpose built release machine. Release of sterile Qfly is planned to occur from late 2020 to early 20211. MORE INFORMATION For updates on DPIRD’s Qfly response please visit www.agric.wa.gov.au/qflyupdate 1 Current 6 November, 2020. Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development

3 MORNING briefing at the Forward Command Post, Claremont showground.

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Soil biology and integrated weed management

T

BY DIMI KYRIAKOU AND CARL LARSEN RMCG

he Soil Wealth and Integrated Crop Protection (ICP) project works with growers nationally to put soil management and plant health research into practice.

3 BACTERIA and mold growing on agar plates from soil samples.

1 Cover crops and soil biology in vegetable soils

As the year finally draws to a close, this column looks back on the project’s focus topics for 2020 — soil biology and integrated weed management — and highlights a collection of useful resources developed for growers during the year.

As mentioned in the Spring 2020 edition of WA Grower, a recent webinar recording from the Soil Wealth ICP team delved into the impact of cover crops on soil biology using DNA sequencing technology. This technology provides information on soil bacteria, fungi and eukaryote communities to see what changes occur in vegetable soils following cover crops.

The year 2020 was undoubtedly challenging, but for the vegetable and potato growers of Australia it was also a time to focus on the benefits of soil biology and integrated weed management (IWM) in their production systems.

Dr Kelvin Montagu from the Soil Wealth ICP team and microbial ecologist Dr Shane Powell from the University of Tasmania also discussed the diversity of biological communities in vegetable soils and how cover crops and biofumigants impact soil microbial communities.

This approach allowed growers to access a range of useful articles and practical resources to better understand soil biology and IWM, and how they could be applied on-farm to Collection of useful maximise productivity resources developed and profitability.

for growers

This year, the Soil Wealth ICP project put soil biology and IWM research into action to benefit the Australian vegetable and potato industry.

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Soil biology

YOUR PRODUCTION

WA Grower SUMMER 2020

This article outlines three of the top soil biology and IWM resources produced as part of the Soil Wealth ICP project in 2020. Stay tuned for the announcement of the project’s focus topics for 2021 in the coming weeks.

Watch the webinar recording here: soilwealth.com.au/ resources/webinar-recordings/ cover-crops-and-soil-biologyin-vegetable-soils


YOUR PRODUCTION

2 An introduction to soil biology Soil biology is a complex, dynamic and broad field. This 30-minute podcast introduced growers to the concept of why biology is important to soil fertility and maximising crop production, as well as the complexities, risks and potential of biological crop products. The podcast aimed to provide growers with a better understanding of the role of soil biology in vegetable production and share insights from a grower, a manufacturer and a scientist with experience in soil biology. Listen to the podcast here: soilwealth.com.au/resources/ podcasts/soil-biology-andbiological-products-an-introductionpodcast-30-minute-listen

3 Biological Products Database The Soil Wealth ICP team continues to receive great feedback on the Biological Products Database, a popular tool to help growers navigate the array of ‘biological’ products currently available to their farming business. Biological products, also known as biologicals, are defined as those that are derived from living organisms such as plants, animals, microorganisms and fungi. This includes products used as soil biology stimulants as well as those to improve nutrient availability. The database is available in two formats for ease of use: • Biological products sorted by trade name • Biological products sorted by primary use and trade name. As the database is a work in progress, it is continually updated to include relevant information on the range of biological products available to growers. If you know of any products or trial information that should be included in the database, or details that are inaccurate or incomplete, please use the supplied Excel spreadsheet on the Soil Wealth ICP website and send your suggestions back to the team.

Cover crops and biofumigants impact soil microbial communities.

Access the database here: soilwealth.com. au/resources/ global-scanand-reviews/ biologicalproducts-database

WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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Integrated weed management

1 IWM using cover crops and strip-till In this short podcast, Soil Wealth ICP agronomists, Dr Pieter Van Nieuwenhuyse and Marc Hinderager, discussed the outcomes from a case study carried out on a pumpkin farm in Bathurst, New South Wales.

2 Using remote sensing for vegetable weed control The integration of remote sensing in daily farm management is a hot topic driven by the evolving range of applications through the Internet of Things (IoT). According to British start-up company Hummingbird Technologies, remote sensing technologies can be used to help vegetable growers make the right decisions for weed control and harvest prediction.

The trial highlighted how interrow ground cover can assist in suppressing weeds and how a more integrated approach to weed management, using cover crops and strip-till, might help to reduce the use of herbicides. Listen to the podcast here: soilwealth.com.au/resources/ podcasts/integrated-weedmanagement-using-covercrops-and-striptill-6-minutes Read a case study on the trial here: soilwealth.com. au/resources/case-studies/ iwm-on-a-bathurst-pumpkinfarm-advantages-drawbacks-ofground-cover-use-tillage-andresidual-herbicides

Read the article here: soilwealth.com.au/resources/articles-andpublications/use-of-remote-sensing-technology-in-vegetable-weedcontrol-and-yield-prediction

3 Technology for controlling weeds in vegetable production Most new technology for controlling weeds will be a positive step forward for soil health and the environment, and will play an important role in our fight against herbicide resistant weeds. Watch this interactive session to hear from leading industry experts on some of the most interesting and practical advances in weed management. This webinar covered non-selective fallow paddock weed control, as well as selective in-crop weed control, and delivery technology.

Watch the webinar recording here: soilwealth.com.au/ resources/webinar-recordings/ technology-for-controllingweeds-in-vegetable-production.

MORE INFORMATION

This project has been funded by Hort Innovation using the vegetable research and development levy and funds from the Australian Government. For more information on the fund and strategic levy investment visit horticulture.com.au

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For more information, please contact project leaders Dr Gordon Rogers on (02) 8627 1040 or gordon@ahr.com.au and Dr Anne-Maree Boland on (03) 9882 2670 or anne-mareeb@rmcg.com.au.


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YOUR PRODUCTION

European wasp program success 2019–20 season wrap up

A

s the 2020–21 European wasp season gets underway, the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) is working towards localised eradication in the Perth’s foothills, thanks to an incredible reduction in nest numbers in 2019-20.

European wasp nests can grow to as big as a basketball, or larger, housing thousands of hungry wasps.

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3 EUROPEAN wasps are a bright lemonyellow colour with black stripes and yellow legs, and their antennae are entirely black.


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DPIRD invertebrate pests manager Mr van Schagen said the fight against this serious pest had been brought back from the brink, when nest numbers in 2018–19 were the highest seen in Western Australia for 15 years. The 43-year legacy of keeping European wasp from gaining a permanent foothold in WA continues. “The enormous amount of work that went into this program, and the commitment of additional staff and resources over the past two seasons has paid off, with nest numbers down 29 per cent — from 166 in 2018–19 to 118 in 2019–20,” he said. “Most notably, nest numbers plummeted across the Shire of Mundaring and City of Kalamunda — from 31 to 7 in Kalamunda, and in Mundaring from 25 to 0! “Additionally, we were able to find and kill 17 nests in 2720ha of continuous and challenging bushland in regional and national parks located in Orange Grove and Martin in the City of Gosnells. With zero wasp activity by the close of the season we hope to have seen the last of nests in this area.” Mr van Schagen said this was a mammoth effort given nests were located in almost inaccessible bushland areas. Although this success would not have been possible without assistance from the Shire of Mundaring, City of Kalamunda, Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA) and Water Corporation to gain entry to bushland and navigate the difficult terrain. “The City of Kalamunda fire mitigation team in particular provided vital support, accessing and locating nests in some of the most inaccessible terrain,” he said. “With this collaboration and concentrated effort, we have been able to prevent wasps from moving deeper into the bush — which would have made it impossible to find them in the next season.” Trapping will continue across the Perth hills in 2020–21 to determine if localised eradication has been achieved, and whether the department can scale back its intensive surveillance in this area.

Trapping will continue across the Perth hills in 2020–21.

3 THE City of Kalamunda fire mitigation team.

Outside of the Perth hills, Mr van Schagen said trapping and surveillance by the City of Swan and Town of Bassendean also proved vital — detecting wasps alongside DPIRD trapping grids and preventing spread in these areas.

DPIRD will additionally target communications to businesses in the area to ensure winery operators and workers, visitors to the Swan Valley, and restaurants and patrons know how to recognise European wasp and make reports of suspect wasps.

Just as important were reports and trapping from other local governments, which confirmed the absence of wasps in their areas.

Mr van Schagen said European wasp have been known to damage horticultural crops like grapes and stone fruits, and a telltale characteristic is the attraction to human food and drinks.

“And of course, once again, community reporting of suspect sightings were significant and there were a number of community groups also trapping, and in some cases, hunted down nests from backyards to bushland alongside us,” Mr van Schagen said.

What’s next? An important focus for 2020–21 will be the Swan Valley, due to four nests located and killed last season. Three nests were found close together in Middle Swan close to the river, and another nest was found further north east, on the western side of Toodyay Road. DPIRD is taking all efforts to ensure that if there are other nests in the area, they are found and killed to prevent establishment of new nests. This will involve the deployment of 134 traps in a 1km perimeter around the nest locations, in the areas of Lilac Hill, Caversham, Middle Swan and Herne Hill. They will be checked every two weeks.

“In a way, this will make any wasps in the area easy to spot, as they are highly likely to make a beeline for eateries. Past season detections have included wasps flying into a lunchroom, landing on sandwiches and even in a grocery shopping bag! “As with all seasons in the past, public reporting is essential to finding and locating nests. This year we will have just under 3000 surveillance traps deployed in the metropolitan area, but the eagle eyes of the general public are just as important.” Reports help with the challenge of pinpointing the location of nests, which are hard to find because they are mostly hidden and underground. If there is a confirmed sighting of a European wasp, there is likely to be a nest close by.

WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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3 THE European wasp is considered to be one of the world’s worst wasp species.

Look — Act — Report

While European wasp looks similar to other insects, including the yellow paper wasp, it has distinctive characteristics that make it easily identifiable.

What to look for: • Wasps scavenging on human food, drink and on pet food;

a

• Black feelers/antennae (similar looking to paper wasps, which have orange/yellow antennae); • Wasps flying in and out of a single hole in the ground (90% of nests are hidden underground); • Wasps flying with raised legs (all other wasps dangle their legs). 3 A: European wasp nest distribution in the Perth Metro Area for the 2019–20 season. Black symbols show nest locations and red symbols show confirmed detections of European wasps.

b

Mr van Schagen said every report counts. Even the most seemingly unimportant report has led to the location of nests. If you see something that makes you wonder, don’t second guess. Contact DPIRD immediately. “Based on last year’s detections we are also asking bushwalkers frequenting the areas of Banyowla Regional Park, Ellis Brook Valley Reserve, Korung National Park, the Victoria Reservoir and Canning River Regional Park to be alert and look for wasps,” he said. “Suburbs where we encourage people to be particularly vigilant include Malaga, Martin, Middle Swan, Kewdale, Belmont, Thornlie, Maddington, Welshpool, Kalamunda, Mundaring, Canning Vale, Gosnells, Orange Grove, Aubin Grove, Burswood and Banjup.” In regional areas, Hyden and Geraldton will also be trapped this season, due to detections last year.

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B: European wasp trap distribution in the Perth Metro Area for the 2019–20 season. Coloured icons indicate various European wasp trap locations.

What makes this wasp worse than the rest? The European wasp is considered to be one of the world’s worst wasp species, most notably because it is scavenging and aggressive in its hunt for human food and drinks — even pet food. Should this pest become permanently established in WA, our outdoor lifestyle would be threatened. In the eastern states where European wasp is established, there are many stories of picnics or BBQs being invaded, and people being stung repeatedly after stepping on a hidden, underground nest. Their nests can grow to as big as a basketball, or larger, housing thousands of hungry wasps. European wasps are also an agricultural and environmental pest — they feed on soft fruits, rob beehives, and predate on bees, insects and small animals.

What to do: • Don’t attempt to destroy the nest if you find one — our staff will come and do that for you; • If you have European wasps in your yard, don’t eat outdoors, and that includes the pets; • Stay away from the nest if you know where it is. These wasps can be particularly aggressive if their nests are disturbed; • If you want to be more involved, you can start the investigation process by placing a piece of meat in a safe spot in your yard — fish is their preference. If they come for a feed, call DPIRD; • Once they have had a feed, European wasps usually ‘beeline’ straight back to their nest, which is how DPIRD officers pinpoint nest locations.

How to report: Taking photos or submitting samples for identification is the quickest avenue for ID. Reporting options are listed below. Your report should include what you saw, where you saw it, and when it happened. MyPestGuide • MyPestGuideTM Reporter App • mypestguide.agric.wa.gov.au Pest and Disease Information Service • Phone: (08) 9368 3080 • Email: padis@dpird.wa.gov.au


ADVERTORIAL

Tigers

New sea freight option for West Australian growers THE LARGEST PERISHABLE freight forwarder in Western Australia, Tigers International Solutions (Tigers), has announced it will introduce a new cost saving way to ship fruit and vegetables overseas in the new year. Tigers is commencing a Less than Container Load (LCL) sea freight container service which will allow them to sell shipping space on a per cubic metre basis — a service that is currently unavailable in the WA. At present, growers wanting to export their produce by sea must fill an entire container, which can be difficult and expensive, especially for smaller exporters.

Tigers general manager Jason Radford explained that an LCL container service will allow customers to use part of a container rather than having a full container. “We know that air freight prices can be too high for some export product lines, particularly with the impact of COVID-19 on air transport, so we’re looking at how we can put a shipment together as a consolidated sea freight container, which means more exporters can get their product to market,” Jason said. A recent report has identified the top four markets for Australia fresh vegetable exports as Singapore, The United Arab Emirates (UAE), Malaysia and Hong Kong. These markets have all seen an increase in trade value during 2020. Jason said the new LCL container service will initially target Singapore but will expand to other markets in the future.

“Demand in Singapore has remained strong for Australian fresh vegetables and it is the only trading partner that has recorded a positive increase in both export value and volume during the COVID-19 period,” he said. “This is a great time to get your vegetables into Singapore, if you’ve been thinking of exporting.”

How much could you save? According to Jason, air freight rates have historically been low enough that a grower could export a smaller loads when necessary, however the impact of COVID-19 on global air travel has seen air freight rates increase dramatically. Lines such as corn, or mescalin and baby spinach, with a shorter shelf life, will travel via air freight, whereas longer lasting products such as root vegetables, broccoli, leafy green vegetables, pumpkins, melons, apples and oranges, transport extremely well by sea freight. “Last year growers were paying about 80c/kg for 1000kg to be air freighted to Singapore, so they would be looking at $800 for the shipment,” Jason said. “Now with the increased cost of air freight due to the impact of COVID-19, 1000kg exported by air freight, is costing approximately $3000. “With our new LCL sea freight service we will soon be able to offer growers rates of about $300 per cubic metre, or per tonne, from Fremantle to Singapore, which will represent a significant saving.”

Getting started

• Take some time to understand the market you’re sending to. A grower needs to be able to have a product that is suitable for the market and that will sell well for the customer • Begin networking with overseas customers and get to know their businesses • Once a grower has settled on a market, they then need to make sure their packaging is compliant with any Australian or overseas requirements. It must have the correct markings, such as ‘product of Australia’, the net weight, and identify what is being sent • Sending a sample is also a useful exercise to ensure the customer is happy with that product and that it arrives in good condition • Get registered with the Australian Department of Agriculture, Water and Environment as an exporter, which is a simple process involving an online application • Research the market access requirements of the product/s being sent by looking at the https:// micor.agriculture.gov.au/ website. For example, into the Middle East, all food and vegetables need a phytosanitary certificate and need to be inspected by an authorised officer before it departs. MORE INFORMATION Tigers International Solutions: T: (08) 9479 0308 M: 0412 107 405 jason.radford@go2tigers.com www.go2tigers.com

• Find a market first. vegetablesWA, AUSVEG and Austrade are great places to start when investigating how to get into various markets. WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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Fall armyworm detected

near Gingin

Two moths were recently collected in a pheromone trap north of Gingin.

3 THE detection of fall armyworm moths in Gingin follows an earlier detection of fall armyworm in Geraldton.

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T

he pest fall armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda) was detected near Gingin in November 2020 as part of a surveillance program run by the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD).

3 FALL armyworm eggs are white to pale-yellow coloured and laid on leaves in clusters of 50 to 200 eggs, covered in layers of hair or scales.

Two moths were recently collected in a pheromone trap north of Gingin. This is the most southerly detection to date in Western Australia since the pest was first confirmed in northern parts of Australia earlier this year. No larvae or feeding damage has been found in the Gingin area, but horticulture, grain and turf grass growers are encouraged to check for larvae in their crops and monitor for unusual levels of damage.

3 FALL army neonates that have just emerged from the eggs are light coloured with a darker head.

The Gingin trap and others further south will continue to be monitored as part of DPIRD’s ongoing surveillance program. Suspected fall armyworm should be reported to DPIRD to assist with surveillance and potential management options. DPIRD has deployed more than 50 pheromone (lure) traps throughout northern WA, including Kununurra, Broome, the Pilbara, Carnarvon, and Geraldton. These complement existing traps in Kununurra, which have operated since October 2019.

The DPIRD Grainbelt trapping program of approximately 70 traps has ceased, with crops drying out in most areas and harvest underway. Select sites remain and will be monitored over summer. Traps have also been placed in horticultural regions in southern WA. The detection of fall armyworm moths in Gingin follows an earlier detection of fall armyworm in Geraldton. Thus far, no established populations of fall armyworm have been found south of Carnarvon.

PHOTOS © DPIRD

WA activity

These surveillance trapping networks assist in providing early warning advice to industry about the presence of fall armyworm as the pest potentially migrates further south. DPIRD continues to liaise with the Australian Government, state and territory governments and industry groups, which are collaborating to assist in preparing for and minimising the impact of fall armyworm as it becomes more broadly established.

Suspected fall armyworm should be reported to DPIRD.

Pesticide resistance genes in WA’s fall armyworm population Pesticide resistance genes have been detected in WA’s fall armyworm population.

Samples of fall armyworm larvae from Kununurra and Broome were sent by DPIRD to the Insecticide Resistance Unit at New South Wales Department of Primary Industries (NSW DPI) for analysis. Larvae were tested for the presence of genes that are linked to resistance to Group 1 insecticides. Genes that may confer resistance to the Group 1 insecticides were found in all of the small sample of larvae tested.

Further testing is necessary to determine the distribution of the genes in other locations across WA, and validate and expand on the preliminary research results by testing for resistance genes to other pesticides. WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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3 MALE fall armyworm moth.

More information is available from the APVMA Online Portal at https://portal. apvma.gov.au/permits. Search for ‘fall armyworm’. FIGURE 1. THE FALL ARMYWORM LIFE CYCLE HAS FOUR DISTINCT PHASES: EGGS, LARVAE, PUPA, AND MOTH.

Light bands on the sides with a dark band in between

Pale dorsal line

Inverted ‘Y’ marking on the head area

Four large spots in a square arrangement on the second to last segment

The permits should be read in conjunction with the relevant product label for information on withholding periods and other critical comments. Biosecurity and reporting Horticultural, turf grass, irrigated crop and pasture growers are encouraged to regularly monitor their crops for the presence of fall armyworm larvae over the summer period. Fall armyworm appears similar to other caterpillar pests. Care should be taken to carefully identify the insects in crops.

MORE INFORMATION Four smaller spots in a trapeze arrangement on other segments

FIGURE 2. KEY FEATURES ON FALL ARMYWORM CAN BE USED FOR IDENTIFICATION.

It is likely that fall armyworm entered Australia carrying the genes and that the traits will spread as fall armyworm migrates throughout the State. There is also the possibility that new resistance genes will develop in Australia. Continual monitoring for resistance mutations and careful evaluation of pesticide efficacy over time will be important in the ongoing management of this pest.

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Growers are encouraged to judiciously select any pesticides to be used, and ensure insecticides are rotated to reduce selection pressure.

Chemical permits The Australian Pesticide and Veterinary Medicine Authority (APVMA) has issued a number of permits for the use of certain chemicals for the control of fall armyworm.

Report suspected fall armyworm damage to DPIRD’s Pest and Disease Information Service(PaDIS) by calling (08) 9368 3080 or email padis@dpird.wa.gov.au, or use the MyPestGuide Reporter app. More information is available on the DPIRD website at agric.wa.gov.au. Search for ‘fall armyworm in Western Australia’. General enquiries or suspect reports can be made to PaDIS by calling (08) 9368 3080 or email padis@dpird.wa.gov.au. WA industry enquiries can be directed to Helen Spafford, Senior Research Scientist (08) 9166 4074.

Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development


I’M FINDING N EW WAYS … HOW ABOUT YOU? Jamie | Delroy Orchards

Things have changed for us this year. We’re now taking a different approach to how we manage the orchard. And how we find staff. We can’t rely on the same workforce we’re used to. We need WA workers to fill the gaps. To find the people we need, we’ll look online. Why not give it a go. For more information visit wa.gov.au/workandwander


YOUR PRODUCTION

Reducing food safety risks

s e r u n a m from Food safety programs do not restrict use of manures if they have been treated.

3 THE best option for reducing risk is to use only manures that have been thoroughly composted

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WA Grower SUMMER 2020


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M

anures have been used to improve agricultural soil fertility for over 7,000 years. Manures add nutrients and organic matter, increase soil bulk density, enhance structure and water holding capacity and increase biodiversity. Unfortunately, manures can contain pathogenic bacteria such as Escherichia coli (E. coli), Salmonella spp., Listeria monocytogenes, Campylobacter spp., Yersinia enterocolitica and others. Even a small dose of some of these human pathogens — particularly some species of Salmonella and types of E. coli — can cause severe illness and even death.

thoroughly composted. Heat generated during composting kills human pathogens present in the manure, along with weed seeds and plant diseases.

Food safety programs do not restrict use of manures if they have been treated. That is, composted in accordance with Australian Standard 4454. A key requirement is that the materials must heat to >55ºC for at least three days, with five turnings to ensure all of the materials are thoroughly composted. If materials are not certified, they are considered the same as untreated manure.

Untreated manures used to grow vegetables can contaminate food with these bacteria.

Untreated manures used to grow vegetables can contaminate food with these bacteria. Contamination may occur directly through contact between vegetables and manureamended soil, or indirectly if manures contaminate water used for irrigation or crop sprays.

Reducing risk — composting The best option for reducing risk is to use only manures that have been

Reducing risk — withholding periods

Most human pathogens do not survive for extended periods in soil. Many food safety standards mandate withholding periods between application of untreated (or semi-treated) manures and harvest. These time intervals are intended to allow human pathogens in soil or on plant surfaces to return to normal environmental levels. However, die off rates are hard to predict, being affected by temperature, soil type, soil moisture and many other environmental factors. For this reason, withholding periods between application

of manure and harvest are both variable and conservative, assuming a ‘worst case’ scenario. The Guidelines for Fresh Produce Food Safety and Freshcare both stipulate a 90-day withholding period for products that are grown in or close to the soil and may be eaten uncooked, and 45 days for other (low risk) products. However, other schemes mandate longer periods: • GLOBALG.A.P. — 60 days between application and harvest for tree crops, but 60 days between application and planting for vegetable crops • USDA — 120 days/90 days for high and low risk products respectively • HARPS — 365 days if the harvestable part of the crop is grown in or within 1m of the ground or is harvested from the ground, and may be eaten uncooked • The Fresh Salad Producers group — 365 days withholding period • The California Leafy Greens Marketing Agreement prohibits all use of manures.

Why 90/45 days? Withholding periods are based on an overview of die off rates published in the scientific literature. However, most studies have focussed on Europe and North America, with results varying widely by environment and agricultural practices.

3 THE project examined how quickly populations of human pathogens return to environmental levels when added to sandy or clay loam soil in cos lettuce crops.

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The best way to reduce risk from manures is to only apply products that have been treated.

E. COLI (LOG CFU/G SOIL)

5

Cattle manure

Poultry litter

4

Listeria spp. proved the most persistent. Species of Listeria, including the L. innocua used in this trial, can survive in soil for extended periods. In trials A and C, approximately 50 per cent of plots were still positive for this bacteria 50 days after it was added to the soil.

3 2 1

LIMIT OF DETECTION

0 0

10

20

30

40

50

DAYS AFTER MANURE INCORPORATED FIGURE 1. AVERAGE POPULATIONS OF E. COLI IN SOIL AMENDED WITH CATTLE MANURE OR POULTRY LITTER. DATA COMBINED FROM SANDY AND CLAY LOAM SOIL. VALUES MODELLED FROM THREE SEPARATE CROPS. BARS INDICATE 95 PER CENT CONFIDENCE INTERVALS. The project Pathogen persistence from paddock to plate (VG16042) has examined how quickly populations of human pathogens (E. coli, Salmonella spp. and Listeria spp.) return to environmental levels when added to sandy or clay loam soil (see Figure 1).

was extremely rapid in soil amended with cattle manure in trials A and B, the bacteria survived longer when it was added to soil in trial C. Modelling the data indicated that, after 50 days, E. coli would be at or below the level of detection in all seasons.

Cattle manure and fresh poultry litter with added human pathogens (E. coli, Salmonella hofit and Listeria innocua) were incorporated into the soil at a high rate (20t/ha) at the start of spring (trial A), summer (trial B) and autumn (trial C) crops of cos lettuce.

Salmonella spp. populations also declined rapidly after addition to soil, with the bacteria undetectable after 50 days in summer and autumn trials.

Populations of E. coli in soil amended with poultry litter fell below the level of detection (10CFU/g) within 50 days in all three trials, indicating a mortality of over 99.9 per cent. Although die off

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3 WHILE soil contamination affects risk, it is the presence of human pathogens on harvested product that matters most.

WA Grower SUMMER 2020

However, the bacteria survived significantly longer during trial A; although the population was too low to count, there was still a 50 per cent probability of detection in 25g of soil after 50 days.

While soil contamination affects risk, it is the presence of human pathogens on harvested product that matters most. To simulate a ‘worst case’ scenario, mature lettuce were tested with the dirty outer leaves still attached. E. coli was rarely detected (0.25 per cent of samples) on lettuce grown with manure, and Salmonella spp. was not detected. However, Listeria spp. was detected on three lettuce in the trial C.

Conclusions In these three trials, high initial populations of E. coli and Salmonella spp. in soil fell below or close to detectable levels within 50 days of application. However, the results must be considered cautiously. The trials were conducted in a single location over a relatively short time period. Moreover, Listeria innocua persisted in the soil during two out of three cropping cycles. This does not necessarily mean that the human pathogen L. monocytogenes would also survive under these conditions, but does demonstrate the variability in microbial populations.


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While human pathogens in soil are potential contaminants, it is their presence on the harvested product that is most important. Even though lettuce were tested with soil attached, E. coli and Salmonella spp. were rarely found. Despite this, detections of Listeria spp. on a number of lettuce does raise concerns. There is zero tolerance for L. monocytogenes on harvested produce, so any detection will trigger a product withdrawal. Moreover, if this lettuce was processed then stored, initially small populations of bacteria could potentially multiply, creating a significant food safety risk.

Recommendations • The best way to reduce risk from manures is to only apply products that have been treated (e.g. composted in accordance with AS4454) to kill any human pathogens present • High temperatures, dry conditions and other environmental factors reduce survival of human pathogens in soil, but effects are variable • Withholding periods between application of manure and harvest provide an alternative method to reduce risk: — In these trials, populations of E. coli and Salmonella spp.

consistently fell to barely detectable levels within 50 days after addition to soil — Populations of Listeria spp. can potentially survive longer than 50 days • The length of withholding periods used will therefore depend on: — Whether the product is grown in or close to the soil and may be eaten uncooked (i.e. high risk) — On-farm risk assessments — Customer mandated requirements

This project has been funded by Hort Innovation using the vegetable research and development levy and funds from the Australian Government. For more information on the fund and strategic levy investment visit horticulture.com.au

Disclaimer: Hort Innovation (HI), Applied Horticultural Research Pty Ltd (AHR), Fresh Produce Safety Centre (FPSC), Freshcare (FC) and the University of Sydney (USyd) make no representations and expressly disclaims all warranties (to the extent permitted by law) about the accuracy, completeness, or currency of information in this fact sheet. Users of this material should take independent action before relying on its accuracy in any way. Reliance on any information provided by HI, AHR, FPSC, FC or USyd is entirely at your own risk. HI, AHR, FPSC, FC and USyd are not responsible for, and will not be liable for, any loss, damage, claim, expense, cost (including legal costs) or other liability arising in any way (including from HI, AHR, FPSC, FC or USyd or any other person’s negligence or otherwise) from your use or non-use of information from project VG16042 Pathogen Persistence from Paddock to Plate or from reliance on information contained in this material or that HI, AHR, FPSC, FC or USyd provides to you by any other means.

1300 WILDEYE info@mywildeye.com www.mywildeye.com WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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Planting materials such as seeds, seedlings, soil, compost and fertiliser can be a reservoir for plant pests. 3 USING certified seed and purchasing clean seedlings from reputable supplies is the first step to protecting your crops to safeguard your farm against pests.

Hygiene practices

to eliminate pests and disease

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YOUR PRODUCTION

BY MADELEINE QUIRK BIOSECURITY OFFICER, AUSVEG

O

ne of the best defences against pest and diseases on your farm is to implement on-farm hygiene practices. These may limit the entry, spread and establishment of pests and diseases, and help to protect your crops. AUSVEG Biosecurity Officer Madeleine Quirk reports. Farm hygiene is the practice of implementing simple yet effective measures on-farm to reduce the risk of entry, spread and establishment of plant pests. Farm hygiene is the first step to helping growers protect their own businesses and the wider horticulture industry, while minimising production losses and unnecessary costs associated with pest outbreaks. Every day, farm inputs such as planting material and packaging, bins and pellets are brought onto farms to be used in the production process. If they are not managed correctly, farm inputs can create significant biosecurity risks and may seriously affect a grower’s bottom line. This is also the case for waste and weeds that are not managed appropriated. However, farm hygiene practices — if implemented correctly — have the potential to significantly reduce these risks.

suppliers must provide information on the product’s source and testing history, so maintaining a record of test results will help to provide further protection. Upon planting, recording the field in which the seeds or seedlings were planted can further assist with traceback activities should they need to occur. Before planting, consider separating new nursery stock from production areas and undertake regular surveillance of this stock until you are confident that they are not carrying pests and diseases. Similarly, fertiliser should always be examined for pests and diseases before being used on-farm. You can reduce your risk of purchasing contaminated fertiliser by ensuring that it meets industry standards, such as purchasing fertilisers certified by the Fertilizer Industry Federation of Australia (FIFA) Purchase Code of Practice or by other industry quality control programs. Organic fertilisers may also pose a risk to farm health so they should be monitored carefully and treated correctly before being used.

assumed that they are clean on arrival, so immediately inspecting, disinfecting and disposing of any existing organic material is key, as it may be harboring insects or pathogens.

Beware waste and weeds Waste and weeds pose a risk to your farm’s biosecurity. Waste products that are stagnant, such as fallen crops and leaf material, can quickly become incubation hubs for pests and diseases.

To reduce this risk, store waste away from nurseries, growing areas and water sources, and always dispose of waste quickly and in an appropriate manner, such as deep burial or burning. Similarly, pests and diseases tend to harbour in weeds while they await a more suitable host plant. Maintaining a weed-free buffer zone around the growing area will help stop the spread pests and diseases in your crops. To ensure that you keep on top of weed management, consider developing an on-farm weed management plan.

On-farm hygiene practices limit the entry, spread and establishment of pests and diseases, and help protect your crops.

Packaging, bins and pellets Packaging, bins and pellets may not come to mind when you think of pests and diseases, yet they are a key pathway for pests to hitch a ride into a new area. Packaging, bins and pellets are a core part of the supply chain but are often reused and recycled. It should never be

Farm hygiene practices may be simple, yet they can significantly protect your business. For information on other farm hygiene practices, including advice on managing biosecurity risks associated with staff and visitors, please visit farmbiosecurity.com. au/essentials-toolkit.

Planting material Planting materials such as seeds, seedlings, soil, compost and fertiliser can be a reservoir for plant pests. While these inputs are crucial elements of any farm business, there are steps that can be taken to mitigate the risk of spreading unwanted pests and diseases. Using certified seed and purchasing clean seedlings from reputable supplies is the first step to protecting your crops to safeguard your farm against pests. Maintaining a register of incoming seeds and seedlings, including where, when, and how many were received, will allow for the application of tracing activities should a new pest or disease be detected. When using certified seed, WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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3 COLORADO potato beetle is a pest of solanaceous crops including potato, tomato, and eggplant.

CPB is yellow to orange in colour with dark stripes along its wings.

Exotic pests to keep an eye out for in summer in WA

3 BMSB adults have distinctive shield shapes, variable body colour, and are approximately 12–17mm in length.

This summer, it’s more important than ever to keep an eye out for exotic pests including brown marmorated stink bug (Halyomorpha halys), Colorado potato beetle (Leptinotarsa decemlineata), and the notifiable pest fall armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda). Brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is an exotic pest that is not found in Australia, but there is a heightened risk of BMSB entering the country by hitchhiking on imported goods between September and April. They will commonly hitch a ride in shipping containers, vehicles, and other imported goods entering Australia. BMSB adults have distinctive shield shapes, variable body colour, and are approximately 12–17mm in length. They also have distinct black and white bands on their legs, antennae and rear abdomen. BMSB feeds on more than 300 plant species including many vegetables, fruit, trees and ornamental plants, posing a risk to Australia’s horticulture industries. Colorado potato beetle (CPB) is a pest of solanaceous crops including potato, tomato, and eggplant. Approximately 1cm in length, CPB is yellow to orange in

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colour with multiple dark stripes along its wings. Whilst CPB is not present in Australia, it is important to monitor for this pest over summer to ensure it is detected quickly.

MORE INFORMATION

Fall armyworm (FAW) has been detected across some parts of Western Australia, however it is still considered a notifiable pest. Suspect FAW detections should be immediately reported to the Exotic Plant Pest Hotline on 1800 084 881. Early detection and reporting of FAW will help protect WA’s plant industries and the environment. Visit www.agric.wa.gov. au/pests-weeds-diseases/ for more information.

Contact AUSVEG Biosecurity Officer Madeleine Quirk on (03) 9882 0277 or madeleine.quirk@ausveg.com.au. The Farm Biosecurity Program is funded by the Plant Health Levy.

Any unusual plant pest should be reported immediately to the relevant state or territory agriculture agency through the Exotic Plant Pest Hotline (1800 084 881).


YOUR PRODUCTION

Resistance to Zucchini yellow mosaic virus

in commercial zucchini

80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 Goldie

Regal Black

Rosa

Eva

HMX586539

HMX586173

Naxos

Alessandra

Brookton

Apollonia

Windsor

Desert

HMX586615

0 Baily

New commercial varieties of zucchini are available but their resistance to ZYMV and other viruses have not been investigated in a controlled way. DPIRD is investigating the response of these varieties in both glasshouse pot trials and field trials, held at the Gascoyne Research Facility in Carnarvon.

90

Syros

Along with Dr Cherie Gambley and Dr Denis Persley in Queensland, DPIRD is doing work on how to manage the problem of ZYMV in zucchini.

In the greenhouse, we tested these same varieties under a high inoculation pressure of each plant being physically inoculated with the virus. We saw the same resistance to the virus under these conditions, with the susceptible controls showing high levels of damage from the virus.

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Nitro

The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD), as part of the Hort Innovation funded project: Area wide management of viruses and bacteria (VG16086) is looking at managing this problem.

Promising results were found with several varieties having high levels of resistance to ZYMV that was durable in both greenhouse and field trials.

Luda

The virus is rapidly spread by aphids and can infect a wide range of cucurbit fruit and vegetables including pumpkin, melon, watermelon and zucchini. The aphids that spread the virus can do so by feeding for only a few seconds on infected plants, which has made controlling the disease difficult.

In the field, none or less than 50 per cent of the plants of 13 varieties became infected with ZYMV after 10 weeks (see Figure 1) where they were exposed to virus and no insecticides were used to control aphids. In contrast, all of the plants of the susceptible controls became infected.

ZYMV infects a wide range of cucurbit fruit and vegetables including pumpkin, melon, watermelon and zucchini.

Durable resistance to ZYMV found

065-0

E

ach year zucchini crops in Western Australia are affected by epidemics of ZYMV in each of the major vegetable growing regions.

INFECTION RATE (%)

BY DR CRAIG WEBSTER DEVELOPMENT OFFICER, DPIRD

Eighteen varieties, including industry standards, susceptible controls and new zucchini germplasm were sown along with virus-infected source plants included to allow natural spread. In the greenhouse, the same varieties were mechanically inoculated with the virus to check the resistance under high virus pressure. Plants were checked for leaf and fruit symptoms of the virus, and tested for its presence in the laboratory.

VARIETY FIGURE 1. PERCENTAGE OF PLANTS INFECTED WITH ZYMV IN FIELD TRIALS HELD AT THE GASCOYNE RESEARCH FACILITY, CARNARVON AT 10 WEEKS POST PLANTING. WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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Glasshouse pot trials and field trial investigations.

3 ZUCCHINI grown at Gascoyne Research Facility, Carnarvon with no symptoms of ZYMV infection.

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% fruit virus affected (LHS)

5.0

Leaf symptom severity (RHS)

0

0.0 Regal Black

0.5 Goldie

10 Black Jack

1.0

Naxos

20

Eva

1.5

Rosa

30

HMX586539

2.0

Windsor

40

Luda

2.5

Desert

50

Syros

3.0

Apollonia

60

Baily

3.5

HMX588615

70

94912

4.0

Brookton

80

Nitro

4.5

065-0

90

Alessandra

INFECTION RATE (%)

100

VARIETY FIGURE 2. PERCENTAGE OF FRUIT WITH VIRUS SYMPTOMS — AFFECTING MARKETABILITY (ORANGE LINE, RIGHT HAND AXIS) AND AVERAGE RATING OF SYMPTOMS ON THE LEAVES (GREEN COLUMNS, LEFT HAND AXIS). ZERO WAS NO SYMPTOMS AND FIVE SEVERE SYMPTOMS.

In these plants, all the developing fruit had the typical mosaic and warty appearance — making them unmarketable (see Figure 2). In the resistant varieties no symptoms of the virus were seen in the majority of the plants, with only a small amount of mild symptoms seen such as yellow spots on leaves and fruit.

The susceptible control varieties had obvious symptoms of ZYMV only two weeks after inoculation and all fruit formed after this time had strong virus symptoms. The resistant zucchini in contrast had no symptoms for up-to six weeks after inoculation and only some fruit developed virus symptoms, which were milder in appearance.

Resistance greatly reduced the amount of virus present DPIRD’s Diagnostic Laboratory Service (DDLS) labs at South Perth measured the amount of virus in each variety was measured. Often no virus was detectable in the plants despite them having been physically inoculated with the virus. 3 ZUCCHINI with mosaic and wartiness of ZYMV in a susceptible variety.

Where the virus was detected it was at a tiny fraction (less than one thousandth as much) of the amount in the susceptible controls.

3 SYMPTOMS of ZYMV on inoculated fruit. No symptoms on several varieties. Spots seen on some fruit and severe symptoms on susceptible controls.

This means that much less virus is available for spread to other plants either by harvesting fruit with tools such as knives, or by aphids visiting the crops.

Future work While ZYMV is the most commonly found virus in zucchini in WA, two other related viruses are also occasionally detected — Watermelon mosaic virus and Papaya ringspot virus. We will continue to test these varieties against other viruses known to infect zucchini to see how broad the resistance is. WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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The work to date in Queensland has shown these lines have good resistance against the related virus PRSV as well as the ZYMV work done here; however, these viruses are highly diverse. Other virus infecting zucchini, including strains of ZYMV from Kununurra, will also be tested.

Zucchini growing normally despite high ZYMV disease pressure.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT Thanks to HM Clause, South Pacific Seeds, Lefroy Valley, Syngenta and Terranova for supplying seeds. This project has been funded by Hort Innovation using vegetable industry levies and contributions from the Australian Government with co-investment from the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries; Victorian Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources; the Northern Territory Department of Primary Industry and Resources; Western Australia’s Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development; and the University of Tasmania. It is supported by a second smaller project led by the New South Wales Department of Primary Industries and similarly funded by Hort Innovation using

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vegetable industry levies and contributions from the Australian Government and the NSW Department of Primary Industries. MORE INFORMATION Contact Craig Webster on 0499 997 563, at craig.webster@dpird.wa.gov.au or go to www.agric.wa.gov.au/minor-fruits/zucchiniyellow-mosaic-virus-cucurbit-crops

Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development


TOOL TIME

TOOL

TIME

your

production WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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TOOL TIME

Measuring performance of the food safety management system BY ELIZABETH FRANKISH | FOOD SAFETY CONSULTANT AND PHD CANDIDATE

TOOL

FOOD SAFETY MANAGEMENT DIAGNOSTIC INDICATOR (FSMS-DI)

FOOD SAFETY MANAGEMENT is complex and risk assessment is multi-faceted. Horticultural production operates in a dynamic environment, where technological advancements and new product developments must deal with the challenges of emerging pathogens and vulnerable consumers, such as the elderly, who are more susceptible to foodborne illness.

WHAT DOES IT DO

MEASURES PERFORMANCE OF THE FOOD SAFETY SYSTEM

WHO WOULD USE IT

GROWERS, PACKERS, PROCESSORS

THE COST

CONSULTANT ASSESSMENT/ TRAINING TIME

MORE INFORMATION

Contact: elizabeth.frankish@gmail.com

3 A benefit of using the tool is that quality assurance staff will have evidence to support decision making and gain ideas for improving food safety management.

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A good food safety output indicates the system is working well.


TOOL TIME

Consumers generally are seeking greater transparency in their food supply and ethical stewardship from producers. The more tools available to navigate the multitude of food safety requirements the better. Researchers at Wageningen University developed a food safety management system diagnostic indicator tool to help track how well a horticulture food safety system is performing. As part of Elizabeth’s current research project, she worked with one of the researchers to develop a version specific to orchards and packhouses. The tool measures how well the food safety system is designed in the context of the business, product, and position in the supply chain. Answers to a detailed questionnaire are scored by choosing the descriptions that best apply to the business operations. Those scores are entered into an Excel spreadsheet and convert to radar diagrams. Figure 1 show where there is higher context ‘riskiness’. If a company is working in a high-risk product context, such as leafy greens, then more advanced controls are needed to manage microbial hazards. The effectiveness of a food safety system is dependent not only on how preventive controls, intervention processes and monitoring are designed, but also how they are implemented in practice. So, the tool measures how well the controls are designed in relation to the level of risk and the actual operation of the control activities. Verification and validation are scored along with control of documentation and record keeping, providing a measure of food safety assurance. More advanced

3 THE tool has been validated for fruits and vegetables in companies of varying sizes and structure.

activities result in more predictable and controllable food safety output. Food safety output is measured using key performance indicators including customer complaints, pesticide residues and microbial test results. A good food safety output indicates the system is working well.

The tool has been validated for fruits and vegetables in companies of varying sizes and structure. It has been tested in companies using a range of private and public standards for their food safety management system. The FSMS-DI acts as a comprehensive internal audit which can be completed at regular intervals to compare performance over time. It identifies strengths and weaknesses in food safety management and shows where improvements are made. While many businesses collect a lot of food safety management data, it is challenging to know how to make best use of it. By measuring performance, the FSMS-DI shows the consequences of actions, therefore improves understanding of the system, and how its many components interact

to ensure reliable control. The user can use feedback to target specific improvements, observe trends, and provide a case for change. Results obtained can be used to show performance improvements to motivate staff and help them identify gaps in control where increased effort is needed. Results will also demonstrate performance to other stakeholders and could help streamline audits. Another benefit of using the tool is that quality assurance staff will have evidence to support decision making and gain ideas for improving food safety management. As with any diagnostic tool, interpretation of the findings and what actions are taken as a result are the vital elements to improving food safety management. MORE INFORMATION Discuss how continuous improvement in food safety management can be supported with elizabeth.frankish@gmail.com.

1

2

3

CONTEXT RISKINESS

STATUS SYSTEM ACTIVITIES

SYSTEM OUTPUT

FIGURE 1. DIAGNOSIS RESULTS IN FSMS-DI RISK PROFILE SHOW LOW TO HIGH RISK (1), POOR TO GOOD CONTROL (2) AND POOR TO GOOD FOOD SAFETY OUTPUT (3). Source: Adapted from Kirezieva et al, 2015, courtesy of P. Luning

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TOOL TIME

System can now track labour on the farm during key task events BY NICHOLA MCGREGOR |

TOOL

WHAT DOES IT DO

WHO WOULD USE IT

THE COST

MORE INFORMATION

SOFTWARE SOLUTION FOR HORTICULTURAL AGRIBUSINESSES

MANAGE, FORECAST AND BUDGET FARM OPERATIONS

GROWERS

CONTACT TIE UP FARMING FOR PRICING OPTIONS

WWW.TIEUPFARMING.COM

THESE DAYS, one of the biggest costs for growers is associated with labour. It can be extremely difficult to accurately monitor workers and capture critical information when they are out in the field. Tie Up Farming has developed a full labour management module into its end-to-end software solution for Agribusinesses to take advantage of. Roei Yaakobi, CEO of Tie Up Farming, explains that while there are other options on the market for recording labour, none of them are integrated into such a comprehensive system. “Our system can be used in the field by supervisors and is as easy as texting. We believe it is the first software for the horticultural industry that is capable of capturing all costs on the farm using one data entry point”.

This addition to the software has been a couple of years in the making, and the initial feedback from both the user experience and user interaction are very positive. “The horticulture industry is very labour intensive, and it is therefore difficult to keep track of labour in the field. Our system can now track labour on the farm during key task events such as harvesting, pruning and thinning as well as in the packhouse while capturing the costs and the efficacy of the workers into one platform. The flexibility that Tie Up Farming software solution offers extends to payrolls and costings, accounting for both hourly and piece rate that can be directly adapted depending on your production system”.

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Cloud-based farm management software to help agribusinesses. “Now more than ever, especially under the current COVID-19 situation, electronically capturing labour movements, harvest activities and the need for accurate track-and-trace capabilities is an indispensable tool for growers to take advantage of.” The system can be accessed by various users ranging from, farm managers, supervisors and agronomists according to their level of permission. The new labour management module is an add on to an already elaborate platform that offers full Chemical and Fertiliser management module and Packing Shed management module. Tie Up Farming’s ability to fully capture both labour and chemical costs while presenting the information in a manner that can be easily analysed puts it on a league of its own as many software lacks in the ability to provide an all-in-one cost capturing solution.

Tie Up Farming provides an end-toend software solution for horticultural agribusinesses. Using a full suite of modules, the cloud-based farm management software can be tailored to help agribusinesses plan, manage, forecast and budget their farm’s operation from planting to packing. The Smart Dashboard allows companies to visually map, track and manage dayto-day production activities, offering a complete overview over all farm operations. MORE INFORMATION Roei Yaakobi, Tie Up Farming: P: (03) 9010 5468 E: enquiry@tieupfarming.com W: www.tieupfarming.com This article was originally published to Freshplaza.com


YOUR INDUSTRY

your

industry Your industry WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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esilience Rretained 3 STAFF retention in the horticulture industry is a priority, but rarely achieved.

A group of extremely experienced, competent and passionate women.

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YOUR INDUSTRY

BY MELISSA DENNING LABOUR SCHEME FACILITATOR

One of the largest growers of lettuce, spinach and rocket in the State.

I

nternational Day of Rural Women passed on October 15, 2020, without much fanfare. The theme of ‘Building Rural Women’s Resilience in the Wake of COVID-19' is based on current topics, but even without COVID-19, the importance of women in the horticulture sector is understated. Three members of the vegetablesWA team, Sam Grubisa, Amber Atkinson and I, decided to find out more about a farm that has a significant number of women in supervisory and management roles. The farm I am referring to is Loose Leaf Lettuce Company (LLLC) and at the forefront of this operation is a group of extremely experienced, competent and passionate women. Located in Gingin, Western Australia, LLLC is one of the largest growers of lettuce, spinach and rocket in the State. Owned by Maureen and Barry Dobra, along with their son Kevan Dobra, the operation also processes fresh, gourmet salad vegetables. Maureen and Barry have been operating the farm for more than 20 years and several employees have been with them for most of that time. LLLC process manager Bianca Jacques has just passed her 18-year work anniversary working for the Dobra’s. Staff retention in the horticulture industry is a priority, but rarely achieved, so I was keen to find out why Bianca and the other women in the LLLC team have stayed for so long. Abbey Crossley is one of the newest recruits to the farm and freely admits that she stumbled into a career in horticulture by accident. She developed a love of farm life after spending time at her grandfather’s farm and was recruited by Maureen Dobra to work on the packing line. Since then she has moved to a supervisor role and is now the second-in-command (2IC) of Ashby Farm.

As well as on-the-job training, Abbey has also been able to attend formal training at Muresk Institute, fully supported by her employer. Abbey said she gained a greater understanding of tractors, chemicals and crop management from the five-day Muresk course. The idea for cross training amongst the staff came from Baylee Deaton, the 2IC at Sativa Farm. Baylee said that much of her role is training new staff that are employed out in the field, but by understanding what happens in other areas of the business workers gain a better understanding of the products and processes. Zoe Nowell is another long-term employee that has moved from the process line, to dispatch, and is currently in the accounts department. Zoe said that being able to take her knowledge from one department to another helped her to succeed in the each of the new roles. She appreciates that she can easily slip into previous roles if there is a huge order or someone has called in sick. Deanne Joubert is only new to the safety role at Loose Leaf Lettuce, but one of

her first challenges has been to conduct a survey of past and existing workers. The Dobra’s are trying to establish if past and present workers would recommend Loose Leaf to their friends as a workplace and how can they improve. Deanne believes constant improvement will benefit LLLC in the future and make it a better workplace for everyone. It was evident amongst the entire group that Maureen Dobra was the driving force behind the training culture at LLLC.

The women said that not only did she encourage all of the staff to undertake training, but that she too would attend courses and learn more about areas of the industry. While LLLC has not been immune to staff turnover, it is not as high as other farms in the industry. The staff attribute this to the positive culture and the high level of respect given to all employees. vegetablesWA would like to thank Maureen and the team at LLLC for their time and contribution to the industry.

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Does horticulture need mandatory training

? s r e k r o w w e n for BY MELISSA DENNING LABOUR SCHEME FACILITATOR

W

hile mandatory training is currently not being considered by the horticulture industry, Melissa Denning discusses the benefits of having such a program in place. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic amplified difficulties in sourcing on-farm labour, the time spent on recruitment, induction and initial training was listed as a high source of frustration for many growers. Horticulture roles can be hard and not everyone is suited to them, but for a grower to spend one- or two-days providing inductions and training to

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a worker who does not then return, it is very time consuming, costly and disappointing.

The link between the two cards is that they are mandatory requirements in their respective industries.

This high turnover of labour is a cost that no grower can sustain.

So I’d like to pose the question: is this something that could be implemented in the horticulture sector?

Other high turnover industries have been successful in implementing a standard card system to mitigate some industry-related risks.

Could the industry have a “Green Card” that is mandatory for all workers to obtain before starting a horticulture position?

This training could include: This high turnover The hospitality industry has its of labour is a cost that no • Workplace safety • Workplace biosecurity Responsible Service grower can sustain. • Food safety practices of Alcohol (RSA) course • Food hygiene practices that provides basic training on generic industry • Basic understanding of the award and difference between legislation and scenarios. The construction industry has the White Card that provides training on basic principles of health and safety, as well as prevention techniques to avoid workplace injuries. Both of these courses ensure that new workers have obtained a minimum standard of training to work in the chosen industry.

hourly and piece rates.

Growers have reported that international workers are often not familiar with workplace practices in Australia and might do something that is commonplace in their country, but completely illegal in Australia.


YOUR INDUSTRY

At this time the Green Card is simply an idea being informally discussed as it would take a full industry effort to implement.

If one grower did not insist on employees having a Green Card in order to work on their farm, then applicants may seek out this easier employment option, rather than completing training and having more knowledge and employment options. Both the RSA and White Card are paid by the workers and generally must be in place prior to starting work in the industry. MORE INFORMATION

3 A baseline course could provide an essential understanding of the industry and potentially reduce the high turnover of workers.

Most employers do have a farm-specific induction process, and this should continue as all farms are different. However, a baseline course could provide an essential understanding of the industry and potentially reduce the high turnover of workers.

We’d love to know your thoughts on this matter. If you think a Green Card would be a valuable addition to the horticulture industry, email Melissa Denning on melissa.denning@vegetableswa.com.au.

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Gingin is facing its third consecutive year of rainfall below the average since 2010.

3 GINGIN Brook is experiencing the worst of this dry, with its second lowest flows since records started 45 years ago.

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PHOTOS © DEPARTMENT OF WATER AND ENVIRONMENTAL REGULATION

Industry acts as Gingin water supply tightens


YOUR INDUSTRY

3 THE department has been working with Gingin water users and the community to raise awareness of climate change and management approaches.

I

n the Gingin area the government, water users and the community are working together to keep their water sources sustainable after what has been an extremely dry year, with annual rainfalls continuing to decline as a result of climate change. Less rainfall means less run off into rivers and streams, and so far this year streamflow from Harvey River, north to Gingin Brook, including the Swan River, is tracking below the post 1975 average. Gingin Brook is experiencing the worst of this dry, with its second lowest flows since records started 45 years ago. After another poor winter rainfall in 2020, Gingin is facing its third consecutive year of rainfall below the average since 2010 — an average which is already well below the long-term one. Department of Water and Environmental Regulation (the Department) senior environmental water planning officer Adam Green explained that low rainfall has also had an impact on recharge to the local aquifers, which are connected to the rivers and streams. “This means there is likely to be increased pressure on water resources in Gingin this summer due to the cumulative impact of reduced recharge to local shallow groundwater aquifers over consecutive years, as well as reduced groundwater contribution to Gingin’s groundwater dependent streams over the dry part of the year, which seems to have started earlier in 2020,” Mr Green said. High levels of water use from multiple users, coinciding at similar times during hot weather, can exacerbate the impact of already low flows on stream health and water available for other users. “We find that the problems get worse on hot days during dry periods, when everyone wants to pump at the same time,” he said.

“It’s not just taking water from the river, using bores within 600 metres of the brooks can also impact river flows, as the aquifers and rivers are connected,” Mr Green said. Gingin Brook and Lennard Brook and the surrounding shallow sand aquifers are important sources of water for horticulture. It is therefore of particular importance that water users and the community work together, particularly during the dry summer and autumn months, to minimise impacts to streamflow, the environment and other water users. The Department has been working with the Gingin water users and community over a number of years to raise awareness of climate change, and management approaches to the issues

surrounding the impact of reduced rainfall on Gingin and Lennard brooks. This summer they are gearing the community up for another major effort. “There is an increasing need for community stewardship approaches to help water users adapt to climate change,” Mr Green said. “It’s about community and government aligning their objectives and working together to improve the management of water resources under climate change. “Government can provide support through communication, policy and regulation, and community can provide support through shared messaging, education, and individual and collective initiatives that promote best practice water and farm management, as well as setting an example for others to follow.”

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Measures that are being adopted amongst Gingin water users include:

Gingin Brook water catchment landholder water information package.

• Voluntarily spreading water use throughout the week and talking with neighbours about staggering pumping on different days or times to reduce short term impacts on flow in the brooks

The booklet is targeted to individual landholders within the Gingin Brook catchment and explains the climate and water science specific to key zones.

• Using the Department’s online streamflow gauging data, and Bureau of Meteorology weather forecasts, to assess watering requirements and consider how individuals may be able to help preserve flows during hot weather or low flow periods

It looks at current rainfall and streamflow trends, as well as future drier projections, and educates landholders by providing information and resources to help sustainable farming and water use practices at the local landholder scale, that will help improve the resilience of the overall brook system.

There is a need to focus on using water efficiently everywhere in the State.

• Protecting fish and crayfish communities in the brooks by viewing online streamflow data and ensuring flows remain above 5ML/day at the Gingin Townsite (Gingin) gauging station and 5.1ML/day at the Lennard Brook (Molecap Hill) gauging station • Ensuring there is enough flow remaining for downstream water users and the environment

• Preventing stock access to the stream to help improve water quality and the overall ecological health of the system. Local community group the Gingin Water Group are embracing the water stewardship approach with the support of the Gingin Shire, Chittering Landcare, Northern Agricultural Catchment Council, and the Department. After receiving a State NRM Community Stewardship Grant in 2019 for their landholder engagement strategy for Gingin Brook, the group have prepared a

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“What we are working on in this region is developing a culture of cooperation and action by sharing information and responsibility for the health of the system,” Mr Green said. “The Department’s climate and water science, and the Gingin Water Group’s landholder engagement strategy, go hand in hand in demonstrating the need for community stewardship in Gingin going forward. “We need landholders who are educated on the water and climate change situation and working together to do their bit at the landholder scale, to protect Gingin Brook at the catchment scale.” Actions that can help range from improving habitat pockets through the catchment, to working towards best practice on-farm activities, including water efficiency, irrigation techniques, drainage and nutrient management, revegetation, fencing, erosion control

3 PROTECTING indigenous fish and crayfish communities in the brooks is important for ecosystem health.

measures and monitoring (e.g. water level and quality; soil moisture). “The more landholders who take this approach onboard through the catchment, the more others will do the right thing and follow suit,” Mr Green said. Over time, this can make a positive change and provide resilience to an important ecosystem that is being impacted by climate change.” Given the very low rainfall in a lot of growing areas, there is a need to focus on using water efficiently everywhere in the State. The Department advises all water users that exceeding entitlements is not a strategy to manage water supply issues and that compliance and enforcement activities are ongoing and targeted to high risk areas. Licensees are also reminded to submit water metering data as required under the Rights in Water and Irrigation Regulations 2000, and the deadline is approaching for all licenses with entitlements between 10,000kL–49,999kL throughout the State to have meters installed by the end of 2020. MORE INFORMATION For Department of Water and Environmental Regulation licence enquiries phone 1800 508 885 or email licence.enquiry@ water.wa.gov.au


YOUR INDUSTRY

Changes to the minimum wages you need to know Main awards pertaining to our industry Federal system BY AMBER ATKINSON COMMUNICATIONS & POLICY OFFICER, VEGETABLESWA

B

roadly speaking, wage theft occurs when employers deliberately do not pay employees their lawful entitlements, including superannuation, award rates, penalty rates, leave and other entitlements. ‘Deliberate’ does not simply mean that the employer chose to not pay what an employee was entitled to — it also covers instances when an employer does not apply the terms of an industrial instrument that pertains to the workplace, when they should have known it applied.

• Horticultural Award 2020: www.fwc.gov.au/documents/documents/ modern_awards/award/ma000028/default.htm

State system • Fruit Picking and Packing Award: www.wairc.wa.gov.au/en/FullAwards • Vegetable growers — award free as there is no specific award covering this sector: www.commerce.wa.gov.au/sites/default/files/atoms/files/ award_free_employees_minimum_pay_rates_and_entitlements_ summary_-_1020.pdf

Federal changes Changes commenced: November 1, 2020 On the June 19, 2020, the Fair Work Commission announced a 1.75 per cent increase to minimum wages. The increase applies to employees that are on the minimum pay rate which will mean more than 2.2 million Australians will get an increase.

It is important to understand what laws are applicable to your business structure.

Recent changes to Federal and Western Australian (WA) awards have seen an increase in the minimum wage making it vital to understand the differences between the federal and state pay rates, awards and entitlements. Firstly, it’s important to understand what laws are applicable to your business structure. The Federal changes outlined relate to incorporated trusts and PTY LTD companies. For sole traders, partnerships and unincorporated trusts, please refer to the state-based changes.

The minimum wage in Australia is now $19.84 per hour ($753.80 for a 38-hour week), this will mean a $13 increase per week.

Most employees however are covered by an award. An award sets the minimum wage for an employee based on the industry they work in and what role they have within that industry. You can work out what you need to pay your employees according to your industry award. The increase doesn’t affect employees who already get paid more than their new minimum wage.

Where to find more information: www.fairwork.gov.au

Stare changes (WA) Changes commencing: January 1, 2021 In June 2020, the WA Industrial Relations Commission (WAIRC) issued the 2020 State Wage Case decision.

The WAIRC decision granted a 1.75 per cent per week increase in the state minimum wage and WA award rates of pay from January 1, 2021. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the minimum pay rates for award free employees and all pay rates in WA awards remained unchanged from 1 July 2020. Wageline has issued new 2020 versions of its WA award summaries, which include the rates of pay that apply from 1 July 2020 and the rates of pay that apply from 1 January 2021, as well as enhanced information on long service leave and employment record keeping obligations. This information is only relevant to employers and employees in the WA state industrial relations system — sole traders, unincorporated partnerships, unincorporated trusts and some incorporated or not for profit organisations. Where to find more information: www.commerce.wa.gov.au/labourrelations MORE INFORMATION • Visit the Wageline website for a guide to who is in the state system: www.commerce.wa.gov.au/labourrelations/wa-award-summaries • WA award summaries: www.commerce.wa.gov.au/labourrelations/wa-award-summaries

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New quad bike s n o i t a l u reg

BY MAREE GOOCH EXECUTIVE OFFICER, SAFE FARMS WA

Q

uad bikes or also known as ATV’s are an easy and common use of transport for all farmers and operators and have long been a consistent issue with regards to safety.

3 IN the first six months of 2020, 14 people, including three children, have died in quad bike-related accidents in Australia.

Quad Bike Safety Standard took effect on October 11, 2020.

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3 IT is important for all quad bike owners to comply with the safety standard.

From October 11, 2020, all new and imported second-hand quad bikes are required to: 1 Meet the specified requirements of the US or the European standard for quad bikes. 2 Have a permanent rollover warning label affixed so that when the quad bike is used, it will be clearly visible and legible. 3 Provide information in the owner’s manual or information handbook on the risk of rollover. According to the Farmsafe Australia Safer Farms Report, quad bikes are the most common agent of injury in each of the last 10 years and have been the most common agent of fatality on the farm in all but four years.

In the first six months of 2020, 14 people, including three children, have died in quad bikerelated accidents in Australia. This is why the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has introduced a Quad Bike Safety Standard, which took effect on October 11, 2020, and continues further into a second stage on October 11 in 2021. The safety standard sets out the requirements for new quad bikes and imported second-hand quad bikes. It is intended to: • Improve information for consumers (through a hang tag, warning for operators and additional information in the manual) from October 11, 2020 • Improve the design of quad bikes (through requiring quad bikes to meet certain requirements in the US or European Standard) from October 11, 2020 • Improve the design of general use quad bikes to reduce the likelihood of a rollover incident occurring (through stability requirements) and to mitigate the harm if a rollover does occur (through operator protection devices) October 11, 2021. The safety standard does not apply to currently owned and second-hand quad bikes to allow the existing quad bike fleet to gradually upgrade to quad bikes that meet the safety standard over time.

4 Be tested for lateral static stability and display the angle at which the quad bike tips on to two wheels on a hang tag at the point of sale. 5 Have a spark arrestor that conforms to the Australian Standard AS 1019-2000 or the US Standard 5100-1d.

Check. Compare. Take Care When buying a new quad bike, make sure you look out for three important things: 1. Check for a permanent rollover warning label on the quad bike that tells you of situations that increase the risk of rollover. It details how to avoid situations when a rollover can happen. 2. Check that the owner’s manual covers these risks as well.

• A Quad bar; • A device of a type that offers the same, or better, level of protection for operators from the risk of serious injury or death as a result of being crushed or pinned in the event of a rollover. At this stage, youth and sports quad bikes are not required to be fitted with an OPD due to the lack of testing of aftermarket OPDs designed for these categories.

Quad bikes are the most common agent of injury on farm in the past 10 years.

3. Check for a yellow hang tag on every quad bike. It shows the angle the model began to tip onto two wheels. The higher the number, the more stable the quad bike.

Quad Bike Safety Regulations from 20211 From October 11, 2021, general use quad bikes must have an Operator Protection Device (OPD) fitted or integrated into its design to help protect riders from the risk of death or serious injury as a result of being crushed or pinned in the event of a rollover. A general use quad bike must have one of the following devices fitted or integrated into its design: • An ATV Lifeguard;

General use quad bikes must also meet minimum static stability requirements. They must be able to achieve the following minimum stability levels: • Lateral roll stability — a minimum tilt table ratio of 0.55; • Front and rear longitudinal pitch stability — a minimum tilt table ratio of 0.8. It is important for all quad bike owners to comply with the safety standard. Otherwise, the supplier may be in breach of the Australian Consumer Law, which can result in fines and penalties. MORE INFORMATION Maree Gooch, phone 0402 611 290, email info@safefarms.net.au or go to www.safefarms.net.au

1 These regulations come into effect from

October 2021.

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Employers face jail, millions in fines as

industrial manslaughter becomes law in Western A Australia

BY AMBER ATKINSON COMMUNICATIONS & POLICY OFFICER, VEGETABLESWA

The Work Health and Safety Bill 2019 was passed by Parliament on 3 November, 2020 and was assented on 10 November, 2020. The WHS Act will not be operational until regulations are complete. Work to develop the regulations is presently underway and will continue in 2021.

The new laws will harmonise WA with other States and Territories, except Victoria.

3 THE new laws offer greater protection to West Australian workers.

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fter nearly four weeks of debate, the Western Australian government announced its Work Health and Safety (WHS) Bill had passed the Legislative Council in October, 2020. The new laws offer greater protection to WA workers, capturing modern employment relationships, such as subcontractors or casual workers, not just the classic employer/ employee relationship.


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In particular, they will introduce the term 'person conducting a business or undertaking'. The new legislation introduces a maximum penalty of between fiveand 20-years' imprisonment for individuals, along with fines of up to $10 million for companies. Other new aspects include increased penalties, banning insurance coverage for WHS penalties and the introduction of enforceable undertakings as an alternative penalty. UnionsWA assistant secretary Owen Whittle said this clear message in law will reduce workplace fatalities. “Less contentious but also very important have been reforms in this Bill that acknowledge mental health impacts from work, improve standards of training for workplace safety representatives, provide vital whistle blower protections and the closure of a loophole that allowed employers to insure so that they never have to pay penalties for unlawful conduct,” Mr Whittle said. “A criminal should not be able to insure themselves against penalties.” The new laws will harmonise WA with other States and Territories, except Victoria. This means companies that operate across Australia will have similar obligations and requirements in each State and Territory.

WA industrial relations minister Bill Johnston said the new legislation brings all industries together into one Work Health and Safety Act. "It reflects the social obligations and responsibilities the community now expects from companies and their senior management, including that mental health and wellbeing needs to be considered alongside physical safety. "I'm very pleased that we have significantly increased the maximum penalties available to the courts for companies and directors responsible for workplace tragedies. "This will act as a deterrent and ensure all workplaces focus on improving safety culture."

3 GROWERS learn about precision drainage operations using T3RRA CuttaTM and iGradeTM landplaning technologies at Greenvale Pastoral, Cressy, Tasmania as part of the precision agriculture grower tour in September 2019.

Precision ag in vegetables helps Australian growers

O

BY JULIE O’HALLORAN SENIOR DEVELOPMENT HORTICULTURIST, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE AND FISHERIES

ver 900 vegetable industry representatives have been introduced to the latest in precision agriculture technology in a threeyear project aimed at helping Australian growers improve farm management practices. The project led by the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries demonstrated how precision agriculture technologies can help vegetable growers improve decision-making and on-farm management systems, as well as optimise productivity and profitability for a variety of crops. Through on-farm trials across the country, they validated a range of technologies such as soil and crop sensing tools for identifying and quantifying underperforming crop areas and defining management zones. The project connected with industry representatives through 23 face-to-face extension activities that demonstrated the potential of precision agriculture in vegetable systems with the aim of increasing adoption for the benefit of growers.

Over 90 per cent of growers involved in the project indicated they would continue to use the precision agriculture approaches demonstrated through the project with 72 per cent expanding to other precision technologies. All project co-operators indicated that involvement in the project accelerated adoption, some by more than two years. MORE INFORMATION For more information view the new series of videos, factsheets and grower case studies available at www.business.qld. gov.au/industries/farms-fishing-forestry/ agriculture/agribusiness/agtechvegetables. Adoption of precision systems technologies in vegetable production (VG16009) was a collaborative project with the University of New England, Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture, Harvest Moon, Primary Industries and Regions South Australia, vegetablesWA and the Society of Precision Agriculture Australia (SPAA). Contact Julie O’Halloran at: julie.ohalloran@daf.qld.gov.au

This project has been funded by Hort Innovation using the vegetable research and development levy and funds from the Australian Government. For more information on the fund and strategic levy investment visit horticulture.com.au

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Internal audits, a critical piece in all management systems The Freshcare internal audit checklist needs to be completed annually before your external audit.

GRAHAM MCALPINE FRESH FOOD SYSTEMS & ASSOCIATES

H

ow many of you when trying to fix something — an engine, a pump or putting flat pack furniture together — have finally resorted to a parts list, a workshop manual, or an instruction sheet and the ladies in our lives lets us know loud and clear: “It would have been quicker if you’d followed the instructions.”

Being a bloke, I know I have, and there have been times I thought I could do it without the instructions. It works sometimes …. maybe…. with my daughter and my wife giving me grief when I’ve had to start again. So, you have to admit, checklists do work and of course that’s what they are designed to do — get it right every time.

So how did we get to need checklists in Horticulture? I’ve worked in the fresh produce sector since 1980 and when I was asked to look at food safety risks in the fresh produce sector in 1995, it was on the back of some nasty food borne illness events that had hit retailers hard across a number of food sectors. To do this we had to take our production and post-harvest supply chain apart to look at the steps we undertake to

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produce fresh produce that could cause a food safety issue in our finished product for consumers. By the late 1990s, Queensland Department of Primary Industries (QDPI) extension officer, Scott Ledger, had developed an Approved Supplier checklist for Horticulturalists that signed off on what we knew at the time as the most likely risks for fresh produce being supplied at retail. This was the forerunner of Freshcare.

Food safety and quality management systems in horticulture Since 2000, we have been developing Freshcare, for members, into a formal management system to meet the increasing understanding of risk that has evolved with the potential to damage your business, vendor status and the sector.


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The Freshcare system allows growers to continually comply with all the food safety and quality risks that have been identified by the food safety regulator and retailers to meet market access requirements.

The Freshcare internal audit checklist needs to be completed annually before your external audit, but please remember it doesn’t have to be completed all at once; you can complete the sections individually.

In any management system, along with the production risk steps, we also see management steps that make sure the system reliably allows operators to cover off on the requirements.

Completing your internal audit

The beauty of the Freshcare system is that it has a checklist (the internal audit) that covers every requirement in the system. By completing it correctly, it provides confidence to business owners that all system elements and risks have been completed. The internal audit also allows for faults to be identified and corrective action taken to bring the system back into control, ready for the external audit. The beauty of the Freshcare internal audit is that it’s the same as the checklist the external auditors use when they come to verify your system is in control and issue your business’s certification.

T-Tape Drip Tape

Please remember the purpose of internal auditing is to: • Confirm that practices are being carried out as required by the Freshcare Standard; • Ensure records are up-to-date, accurate and contain all the required information; • Identify inefficiencies and problems and correct them.

Completing corrective actions where faults are identified A Corrective Action Record (CAR) is completed when requirements of the standard are not being met, and problems have caused or have the potential to have significant food safety or quality implications. CARs should be interpreted as a tool for documenting and demonstrating continuous improvement, as they provide the mechanism for identifying a problem, whether it has occurred before, how the problem is being managed and what resolve has been established to prevent the problem from occurring again.

Remember auditors like to see corrective actions, where faults have been identified.

Conducting an internal audit involves: • Talking to workers; • Observing operations; • Checking records for accuracy and completeness;

Please remember auditors like to see corrective actions, where faults have been identified, as it shows them that the business understands their system and is likely to be in control.

• Recording the detail of what you find — both positive and anything you find that needs to be corrected.

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1/29/2020 11:22:18 AM

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Freshcare Releases FSQ4.2

T

he Freshcare Food Safety & Quality Standard — Edition 4.2 (FSQ4.2) was released to participating businesses and industry on November 9, 2020. The update and release of the FSQ4.2 Standard ensures Freshcare meets the Global Food Safety Initiative, GFSI v2020 benchmark requirements. A six-month transition period to update to the FSQ4.2 Standard, is in place for all existing program participants. External Freshcare audits conducted from Monday May 3, 2021 will be to the FSQ4.2 Standard.

What are the changes? The FSQ4.2 changes in summary include: • Greater emphasis and focus on Food Safety Culture — see Factsheet M1 • Updates to M3 Training and development, requiring annual reviews of workers’ training needs • Updates to F13 Product identification and traceability, requiring dispatch records to be maintained and a test of product traceability • Updated M4 Internal Audit Report Form • Freshcare Rules now found in Section 1 of the FSQ4.2 Standard • Freshcare Rules now provide guidance on Unannounced Audits; and the Two-Part Audit Process. To support the release of the FSQ4.2 Standard, a Transition Guide that details the specific changes has been developed and can be freely downloaded from: www.freshcare.com.au/standards/ fsq4-2

Can I update straight from FSQ4 to FSQ4.2? Dependant on your audit cycle, some businesses could progress straight from FSQ4 to a re-certification audit to FSQ4.2.

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If your audit is to take place prior to May 3, 2021 and you would like to go to audit to FSQ4.2, you will need to advise your Certification Body at the time of scheduling, as some Certification Bodies will not offer audits to FSQ4.2 until May 3, 2021.

How do I access the FSQ4.2 Standard and resources? The FSQ4.2 Standard and supporting resources including record keeping forms and factsheets can be freely downloaded from the Freshcare website: www. freshcare.com.au/standards/fsq4-2 Additional resources are available to participants from FreshcareOnline or hard copy resources can be purchased from www.freshcare.com.au/shop

Why has Freshcare updated the Standard to FSQ4.2? In 2019, Freshcare was benchmarked against the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI), to ensure ongoing domestic and global market acceptance of the Freshcare Standards. The Global Food Safety Initiative released GFSI v2020 benchmark criteria in February 2020 and set a maximum period of time that a Certification Program Owners (such as Freshcare) had to update the Standard and supporting program. The Freshcare Food Safety and Quality Standard has therefore been updated to FSQ4.2 to ensure Freshcare certification remains compliant with the GFSI requirements.

What if I need assistance with the update to FSQ4.2? If you require any assistance with the changes to the FSQ4.2 Standard, please contact the Freshcare Office on: 1300 853 508 or email info@freshcare. com.au The Freshcare Trainer network is also available to provide local, tailored assistance to help with the update to FSQ4.2. For trainer contact details visit: www.freshcare.com.au/training/trainers

If I’m new to Freshcare do I go straight to FSQ4.2? Yes, new businesses will be able to undertake training and access resources to the FSQ4.2 Standard. Training is available via the Freshcare Trainer network or Freshcare eLearning. It is recommended that a minimum of three months’ records are in place prior to new businesses being audited.

Additional Questions? Check out the FSQ4.2 — Q & A’s on the Freshcare website: www.freshcare.com. au/standards/fsq4-2 Or email your questions to: info@ freshcare.com.au

Impacted by extraordinary circumstances? Businesses are reminded that if they are experiencing difficulties or financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic; or have been impacted by extraordinary circumstances; they should contact the Freshcare office for options.


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3 A framework that will allow remote audit activities.

Freshcare allows remote audit activities via twopart audit process

Freshcare has developed a framework that will allow remote audit activities to be undertaken for all Standards through the use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT). This framework establishes a process for Freshcare approved Certification Bodies to undertake a two-part audit process, combining ICT remote audit activities with an on-site assessment. The framework is available as an option for re-certification audits to all Freshcare Standards from 1 November, 2020. Some of the key criteria for the twopart audit process: • Available for all re-certification audits to the Freshcare Standards (food safety and quality, supply chain, environmental, and sustainability) • Voluntary, non-mandatory audit option • All parts of the audit process and audit objectives for the applicable

Standard(s) must be met effectively as a combined audit process • The full audit (remote and on-site activities) must be completed within a 30-day window • The remote option can start prior to harvest, as long as the on-site visit is completed within harvest and the 30 days' timeframe • Contact your Certification Body if this is an option your business would like to explore. MORE INFORMATION Further information is available on our website: www.freshcare.com.au/resources/ freshcare-two-part-audit

ORCHARD PRE-PLANT SOIL SOLUTIONS Pre-plant soil fumigation treatment

TREATED VS NON-TREATED APPLE TREE

is the first step in a successful soil health system. In recent APAL Future Orchards trials, trees treated with TriCal Australia’s StrikeTM fumigants produced amazing results in the first year, with stem elongation at first leaf six times longer than other treatments and the amount of leaders on each tree more than TREATED

READ MORE ABOUT SOIL FUMIGATION FOR FRUIT TREES ON THE TRICAL WEBSITE

trical.com.au

NON-TREATED

HEALTHY FIELDS. HEALTHY YIELDS. WA Grower SUMMER 2020

5371B

double other treatments.

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GFSI 2020 How does it affect food safety? We need to shift with the times to retain effective food safety systems.

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So, what does this mean? BY JOEL DINSDALE QUALITY ASSURANCE COORDINATOR, VEGETABLESWA

F

or those of you that have your finger on the pulse in the food safety realm — you’d be well aware that the adoption of HARPS in 2016 by horticulture producers has meant that some producers had to make adjustments to their QA systems in order to comply with the adjusted market requirements. Fast forward to 2019–21 and these changes appear to be happening more and more with the recent release of new standards from GLOBALG.A.P., Safe Quality Food (SQF), BRCGS, and Freshcare.

So, why are these changes taking place? For some businesses, the requirement to adopt HARPS to supply retailers meant, shifting from the good old HACCP Codex Alimentarius to a GFSI benchmarked scheme — as this is a HARPS requirement. This shift would have taken place in and around 2016–17. For the bulk of the businesses shifting schemes, this meant adopting Freshcare or SQF (but some businesses may also have shifted to GLOBALG.A.P. or BRC Global Standard as their circumstances warranted it). In 2018, Freshcare embarked on its journey to become GFSI benchmarked, with Food Safety and Quality Edition 4.1 (FSQ4.1) achieving its GFSI recognition in 2019. In the same period, GLOBALG.A.P. and SQF were making adjustments to their Standards, releasing their newer versions with minor updates.

This means that GFSI requirements determine what the individual schemes can and cannot include into their systems i.e., there is a set of criteria that ensures the global standards are equivalent for food safety compliance. This is currently GFSI v2020. This means that many of the changes across whatever scheme you implement, are most likely as a result of a review to the GFSI requirements. For those interested and want to know more, check out mygfsi.com for details.

Who calls the shots on the GFSI criteria? In short, there is a committee of experts that conduct a detailed review that considers feedback, evidence etc. before authoring changes to the requirements. A small part of this process is the GFSI conference, which is scheduled for early 2021.

Go back, maybe 30 years, to a time where the old harvesters lifted the potatoes from their mounds but did not convey them into a storage bunker onboard the harvester. Workers were engaged to bend over and pick them up by hand to load them into bins/sacks. It was efficient at the time but certainly not appropriate for 2020. Imagine the potato game if we were still harvesting using this method? Food safety systems are no different, they are good, yet illness and even death are still all too common around the world still, so change is required to continually improve. Therefore, we need to remain open to and embrace all of the changes with the knowledge that the effective implementation will ultimately contribute to safer food for the consumer. You never know, they may even contribute positively towards improvements in production efficiencies which in turn drive profitability.

GFSI conference scheduled for early 2021.

All are encouraged to attend — see the website above for further details.

Changes to the requirements can occur when food safety or other breaches occur — to stop them from recurring in the future. We only have to look in our own backyard to see the direct consequences of this; Listeria monocytogenes outbreak in rockmelons, and needles in strawberries (food defence) to name a couple. Also changes in technology, advances in research and development and our understanding of variables such as microbial contaminants, means that we need to shift with the times to retain effective food safety systems. The good news being that these changes are implemented to prevent food safety incidents and bring efficiencies to food safety systems.

A great example of this is the capacity for certification bodies to conduct remote audits using ICT. This is one such adjustment that have moved from GFSI v2020 to the registered base schemes. This means that businesses will be able to conduct parts of their annual recertification audits remotely. This has the potential to save businesses time and in turn money. Although it must be said that there are rules that govern all audits, whether conducted completely on site or include a remote component, and these rules must be closely followed — please check your base scheme rules for details before embarking this new avenue created by the GFSI v2020 changes. MORE INFORMATION If you’d like to know more about any of the GFSI schemes or you’d like a Quality Assurance Health Check, please contact Joel Dinsdale joel.dinsdale@vegetableswa.com.au.

The way I like to think of it relates to potatoes.

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3 SURVEYS on the efficiency of irrigation infrastructure design as well as water and fertiliser use have shown that there is room for improvement.

0 2 0 2 r e m Sum

VegNET RDO Update

H

BY SAM GRUBIŠA REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT OFFICER, VEGETABLESWA

O…HO…HO! Fingers crossed for a Merry Christmas!

To say this year has been challenging is an EPIC understatement. Way back in February, when the sun was shining, the birds were singing and our biggest concern was Fall armyworm breaching our North Eastern border; who could have known what was to come?

a high fiving fiesta of theoretical and practical horticulture experience. So, when vegetablesWA was awarded the WA tenders for VegNET Phase 2 — Regional Development (Hort Innovation) and Regional Development Officer (APC VPC), we were ready and raring to go. That was until we noticed…the project remits were a little different to the last couple of years. Regional Development is our name… but extension is still our game; the focus has just shifted sideways a little. While we are still here to 100 per cent support the veg growers of WA with all things Hort, R&D and industry innovation; to align with the funding contract criterion (established through their industry specific SIAP consultations) we have drawn our focus in tighter for the coming year.

vegetablesWA’s extension team.... a diverse shared background!

Along with an international pandemic, national border closures and the Australian National Dictionary Centre naming ‘Iso’ as the word of the year…came an extension reinvention to rival Madonna.

vegetablesWA’s extension team consists of Truyen “The Brains” Vo and me, Sam “The Brawn” Grubiša. With a diverse shared background covering scientific research, medical pathology, agronomy, trucking and good old, hands in the dirt farm work; we are

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It began back in May with our first foray into Innovations Systems, regional scans and discussion papers. Training and support from Sean Kenny and Geoff Drysdale at Rural Consulting Group, helped to guide us on our way to developing a five-year regional extension strategy and five key areas of focus by the end of August.

It was during those three months of training that my respect for “The Brains” of this outfit grew exponentially. Truyen’s university degrees and years as a research scientist, gave us an edge in understanding the direction and scope of this new project approach. With his theoretical knowledge and my practical knowledge of horticulture, we were able to visualise a plan to benefit the West.

Now all we had to do was get it all down on paper…this is where the grey hairs really started to sprout! We spent the next two months writing…reviewing…re-writing…and starting again! Motivated by feedback and regional visits over the years, we chose to shine the spotlight on five of the main issues affecting the industry statewide and have created the following project focuses: 1. Water and fertiliser use efficiency 2. Biosecurity 3. Quality assurance base level requirements — chemical certification 4. Pest and disease management 5. Business continuity (assisting role).


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Once we managed to reign in our ‘thoughts of awesomeness’ we were able to produce a strategy and projects that we believe would not only benefit WA’s regional growers but were supported by our own personal strengths and passion for the industry.

As a final part of the development process, a Regional Extension Advisory Group (REAG) was created to guide our strategic direction and assist in shaping the project briefs.

Once the REAG sanctioned recommendations were incorporated and approved, we were ready to reveal the strategic plan that was developed for and endorsed by West Australian vegetable industry stakeholders. If you are interested in finding out more or would like to get involved with any of the above project, Truyen and I are only a phone call, text or email away.

Take a moment to reflect on what you have accomplished this year.

Consisting of three diverse growers and one venerable industry representative, the level of feedback was invaluable in highlighting how we best achieve our proposed objectives.

Plus, we are sick of talking to each other and would love the refreshing change of pace you’d give from outside “The Brains and Brawn bubble”! Ok, that’s a bit of a lie! I could listen to my mate, the scientific maven, ALL day long! While this year has come out of nowhere and slapped us all unceremoniously in the face, I am finishing the year…yet again…proud to be a part of this industry.

Drought…be damned! Bushfires…just bugger off!! Global pandemic…pfff, we Westies GOT THIS!!! I’m certainly not saying it was an easy year in Horticulture and (as “The Brawn”) I’ll fight anyone who says otherwise, nevertheless we made it through! As we head towards the silly season and into the great unknown, take a moment to reflect on what you have accomplished this year. Even if all you did was survive to the end, grab a beer and give yourself a freaking round of applause…you NAILED IT! May you and yours have a very Merry Christmas and a safe start to the new year! ŽIVJELI. MORE INFORMATION Contact Sam Grubiša, phone (08) 9486 7515 or email sam.grubisa@vegetableswa.com.au

Project brief Chemical certification to align with industry and QA accreditation standards Quality Assurance within a Primary/Food Production business is essential to sustainable service delivery. This has been recognised within the West Australian vegetable industry by the APC VPC, with the creation and recruitment of a Quality Assurance Coordinator (QAC).

Project deliverables:

Collaboration with Industry and the QAC has shown a lack of awareness and understanding of the significance of QA throughout the industry. One area of QA that is particularly weak, yet easily rectified by training or education, is chemical certification.

• Organise chemical accreditation courses including the offer to assist ESL Growers with course translation where applicable

• There are businesses operating without a base level QA system in place, leaving them and the wider community vulnerable to food safety issues • Recording basic operational information is often underestimated especially in the area of farm inputs • Routine machinery preparation and maintenance has been ad hoc rather that routine • Awareness of industry advances and changes are often missed due to the reliance on traditional “on farm training” rather than accredited training. Therefore, an increase in skill development and training to encourage farm best practice, knowledge of industry standards and safer production systems enables both Grower and Industry to strengthen business sustainability, profitability and affirm consumer confidence.

• Accepting a place on the Course Advisory Committee • Participating in nominated RTO Industry Reference Group • Involvement in facilitating information sessions • Engagement with OH&S/WH&S initiatives

• Support Growers with QA certification subject to market interests and suitability. The WA RDO’S are well equipped to progress the proposed deliverables such as organising information sessions and accreditation courses; and has already commenced collaboration with RTOs. Through our established networks we have an abundance of industry specialists, including the vegetablesWA Quality Assurance Coordinator and our own personal on-farm experience, to advocate, corroborate, substantiate and validate the fundamental food safety obligation the greater industry demonstrates. Fostering a culture of food quality and safety reinforces our international image of being “Clean and Green”, an image we should all aim to uphold and use to bolster our “essential services” workforce.

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Project brief Improving water and fertiliser use efficiency for vegetables farming in the Swan Coastal Plain

Project brief Improving WA growers capacity in planning and implementing farm biosecurity plan

About 70 per cent of the vegetable industry in WA’s $490 million worth is produced in the state’s South West region under hostile growing conditions.

The vegetable industry in WA worth $490 million has recently been hit hard with two exotic pests incursion incidents — CGMMV in August 2016 and TPP in February 2017. The state is also under threat of Fall armyworm (FAW) which has been detected in two locations: Carnarvon and Geraldton. These incidents could cause multi million dollars losses in terms of substantial yield loss, market restriction, control and management costs to vegetable industry and to the state and the federal governments.

The soil types of this region, stretching from Gingin (100km north of Perth) to Myalup (100km south of Perth) and including the Swan Coastal Plain, are some of the most infertile in the world. With currently insufficient water allocations facing a 10 per cent cut by 2028, the vegetable growers in this region are working hard to sustainably maintain their businesses profitability. However, surveys on the efficiency of irrigation infrastructure design as well as water and fertiliser use have shown that there is room for improvement. Around 40 per cent of investigated growers applied between 20 per cent and 280 per cent above the recommended water volume, whilst 65 per cent of them spent an extra $2,000 to $15,000 over the recommended fertiliser cost. The available knowledge, information and technology, if practically applied to the growers’ established, conventional practices, including — changes in scheduling of irrigation based on crop factors and evaporation and soil moisture monitoring to confirm irrigation effectiveness, will result in more efficient vegetables businesses. The aim of this project is to help growers to constantly keep up with innovations in irrigation and fertiliser application. To achieve the aim, this elementary project within the overall VegNET extension project is designed to take grower participants through a five-step innovation adoption process: • Knowledge (expose growers to innovations in the set of Priority Regional Issues and assist them in understanding the benefits) • Persuasion (the forming of a favourable attitude to them) • Decision (commitment to adoption) • Implementation (putting innovation into use via trial and error process) • Confirmation (reinforcement of the adoption decision based on positive outcomes from it). This project is planned for five years during 2020–25 in collaboration with various stakeholders; and it is opened by the first Water Field Day in Carabooda by October 2020.

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Biosecurity is fundamental for safeguarding valuable national agricultural resources against the threat and impacts of pests, weeds and diseases (pests). Farm biosecurity is the day-to-day, basic management of potential risks, to protect grower’s business, environment and the community, posed by plant pests and diseases entering, emerging, establishing or spreading in a vegetable farm property. Reviewed literature from both national and regional projects in this area of focus details the background, potential impact, plants affected, season of occurrence, mode of spread, and symptoms of exotic threat (carrot rust fly ) and incursion (CGMMV, TPP, FAW) to WA. Farm biosecurity plans and practice guidance are well documented, with multiple avenues for extension. However, stronger extension activity at a grassroots level is needed to facilitate wider grower adoption. The aim of this elementary project under the VegNET WA extension project, is to continue the national and state assistance with information dissemination, on-farm compliance and cultivating positive “cultural attitudes” to vegetable growers; to consolidate the State’s defenses against new and unpredictable biosecurity threats. This also aims to strengthen vegetable growers’ capacity in developing and implementing farm biosecurity plans. The potential actions of this project are designed within the theme “Evolving”. Activities such as grower visits, workshops, demonstrations will be designed to: • Increase growers’ awareness of challenges evolving over time in term of pest management • Increase growers’ awareness and preparedness for threats and risks to their businesses in relation to exotic pest incursion or incident • Increase growers’ motivation to adapt/develop specific farm biosecurity plans that suit their specific farming system. This project will last for five years from 2020 to 2024.


WA POTATOES

potato

update WA Potatoes

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WA Potatoes

Executive Officer’s Report

contacts Horticulture House 103 Outram Street, WEST PERTH WA 6005 p: (08) 9481 0834 e: admin@wapotatoes.com.au w: todatoes.com.au Simon Moltoni, Chief Executive Officer m: 0447 141 752 e: simon@wapotatoes.com.au Morena Perdec, Finance & Admin Manager e: morena@wapotatoes.com.au

A

Georgia Thomas, Project Manager e: georgia@wapotatoes.com.au

Committee 2019–20 Vaughan Carter Chairperson

Busselton

Albany Colin Ayres Deputy Chairperson

m: 0417 092 505 m: 0428 451 014

Glen Ryan Secretary

Pemberton

m: 0428 827 126

Gary Bendotti Treasurer

Pemberton

m: 0427 569 903

Patrick Fox

Scott River

m: 0499 887 202

Bronwyn Fox

Dandaragan

m: 0427 447 412

Christian deHaan

Manjimup

m: 0429 436 361

Elected Members Representing the Ware Fresh sector: Vaughan Carter, Christian de Haan, Glen Ryan and Bronwyn Fox Representing the Seed sector: Colin Aryes Representing the Export sector: Patrick Fox Representing the Processing sector: Gary Bendotti

Fee-for-service charge 2020–21 Processing potatoes — local and export

$6.00/t

Seed potatoes — local and export

$150/ha

Ware (fresh) potatoes — local

$8.00/t

Ware (fresh) potatoes — export

$6.00/t

Ware (fresh) potatoes — marketing

$2.50/t

Projects approved 2020–21 Part funding for PGA Delivery of Registered Seed Potato Certification Schemes & Virus Testing

$310,500 $96,000

Potato Spindle Tuber Viroid (PSTVd) surveillance of the Seed Scheme Part Funding for Export Development Project $100,000 SmartSpud™ System

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$16,000

SIMON MOLTONI EXECUTIVE OFFICER, POTATO GROWERS ASSOCIATION

nother year is nearly over and what a year it’s been! No one could have foreseen how 2020 would become such a historical year for all the wrong reasons.

Here in Western Australia, and Australia more broadly, we have long understood that isolation can be a double-edged sword for industry. Distance from markets has been offset by low disease incursions. In the case of COVID-19 our isolation has absolutely been our saviour. Whilst there are areas of the economy that have been severely affected, we have been able to live our lives with relative freedom by comparison to nearly every other country on earth. As time goes on new medical treatments, including vaccines, should help the world adjust and hopefully return to somewhere near normal. Spring is proving to be very mild with significant rainfall in all the growing regions. This has helped top up any unfilled dams and give irrigators a reprieve. Very welcome indeed. Crops have improved as we move away from the effects of the winter storms and we look forward to a summer of improved returns. It‘s concerning to see the recent biosecurity incursion in NSW. The Serpentine Leaf Miner is a pest that ranks in the top 10 on the biosecurity hit list. With such a wide host list and being very mobile this pest may prove difficult to manage. Unfortunately attempts to manage Leaf Miner in other countries has seen it develop significant resistance to some chemical options. Work is being done at the national level on the way forward with this pest. PGA will keep growers informed on all progress in this space. Keep an eye on your inbox.

Over recent months there has been discussion between various state-based industry bodies and the private sector across all industry sectors, seed fresh and processing, on the potential to create a new potato only Peak Industry body. A plan has been developed to examine what this body could look like and what resources would be required to manage the organisation.

The PGA Committee of Management has agreed that WA should participate in these discussions. The PGA will keep growers informed as this proposal develops. We have recently taken delivery of the ‘SmartSpud™’. Morena, Georgia and I are familiarising ourselves with this tool that should prove to be of great benefit to our supply chain. Please contact the office if you wish to use the SmartSpud™ on your equipment. This project has the potential to further increase the quality of our potatoes and reduce waste and downgrades right through the supply chain. A big thank you to Morena and Georgia for their efforts during this challenging year. I wish all our members a Merry Christmas and a happy and profitable New Year! MORE INFORMATION Contact Simon Moltoni on 0447 141 752 or email simon@wapotatoes.com.au


WA POTATOES

SmartSpud™ testing underway F ollowing a successful application for funding to the APC PPC in 2020, the Potato Growers Association have purchased a SmartSpud™ device for industry use.

”The SmartSpud™ can reduce crop damage by up to 50 per cent...“ aaggrrii™

A SmartSpud™ is an electronic potatoshaped device which is used to gauge points along the harvest/supply chain system where potatoes are potentially being damaged, in order to improve processes and increase potato quality and pack out. The device was ordered from Masitek in Canada, and given the challenges of 2020, took some time to arrive. Since it arrived a couple of months ago, Georgia and Morena have undertaken basic training online in its use and reporting systems. In late November, Georgia and Morena then started their practical training at Beta Spud, testing the device on the wash packing line. This highlighted the need for further trials to troubleshoot any issues and to liaise with Masitek on some of the finer points of using the SmartSpud™.

The trials also highlighted the wideranging use for the SmartSpud™ and the opportunities for industry to make the most of the investment. According to aaggrrii™, the SmartSpud™ can reduce crop damage by up to 50 per cent on the first use. Other benefits include: · Reduce bruising and damage by as much as 50 per cent; · Improve line efficiencies, targeting downtime and maintenance; · Test new equipment in quick time;

· Measure levels of damage through all stages of processing; · Make data-driven decisions. Further testing will be undertaken in 2020 so that in 2021, the SmartSpud™ can be booked by industry members to undertake reviews of operations. Georgia and Morena will continue to upskill in the use of the device to support industry in its application.

3 THE SmartSpud™ is an electronic potato-shaped device which is used to gauge points along the harvest/supply chain system where potatoes are potentially being damaged. MORE INFORMATION For any questions please email Morena at morena@wapotatoes.com.au

Thanks to Beta Spud for allowing us to test the device. WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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Get to know your growers 3 ///

Julian Ackley P

otato seed growing specialists the Ackleys along with their neighbours, the Westcotts, are proudly continuing the legacy that their forebears put into motion in the 1940s.

PERTH

ALBANY

Farmer Julian Ackley Location Cuthbert-Elleker, Albany Enterprises Seed potatoes

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Located in the Cuthbert-Elleker swamp areas in Albany, the operation initially grew spuds for the potato board, eventually growing processing potatoes for Edgell, then later seed potatoes for the processing industries, and finally branching into seed potatoes for the fresh market as well.

During winter, the swamps flood and go under water, which eliminates any crop remnants from the previous season. Crops are then grown in the narrow dry window between December and April without irrigation.

Q&A Q How long has your family been in the region? In the early 40s my grandfather Bob Ackley and his brothers came to Albany during the war to dig potatoes, which was in those days by fork. Consequently, in the late 40s my grandfather Bob Ackley purchased a swamp in Cuthbert area (about seven kilometres from Albany) and began potato farming.

Crops are grown in the narrow, dry window between December and April without irrigation.

Growing quality seed is a highly skilled process — from variety selection to the micro-managing up to 30 varieties and different growth stages prior to being ready to sell. Julian provides more background in the Q&A to his farm and the seed industry.

Forward to 1967, my father Terry Ackley leased the swamp from my grandfather and started growing potatoes for the board. By 1972 he was able to buy his own swamp in Cuthbert, which we still farm today. Around 1974 a school friend of my father, Chris Westcott, purchased a neighbouring swamp and a long-standing partnership was formed.


WA POTATOES

In 2010, Chris Westcott started growing seed potatoes with his son Steven Westcott on the Elleker swamps and I joined my Father farming at the Cuthbert swamp. In 2018, I purchased another swamp in Elleker, next door to Westcotts, and today we both continue the legacy our parents have created for us.

Q What do you enjoy about ‘seed’ potato farming? There are many aspects to being a seed potato farmer that is a bit different — firstly, my customers are almost all farmers. I specialise mostly in the West Australian market and operate across the fresh and processing industries, while also supporting farmer’s market growers, and supplying seed into the nursery industry. Growing seed potatoes is a long process, from ordering mini tuber stock from the

laboratories to having a product in my customers’ hands is a five-to-six-year process and there is no return as a seed grower till the end of that process. Ordering the laboratory-grown diseasefree tuber stock starts 18 months prior to delivery. Once we receive that seed, it is planted as a Generation 0 crop. When that seed is grown out, we have a generation one stock, that is then cool stored till the following year and replanted. The potatoes harvested from that crop becomes generation two and again is returned to cool store for the following season. At generation three the seed is virus tested, and then is either sent out for trials if it is a new variety, or is it kept for final bulk out the following year. Once we reach generation four, the seed is finally sold to the commercial grower to

be grown out for market. By this point it has been over five years since the tuber stock was ordered from the laboratory. If the process of ordering the tuber stock was not complicated enough, add in plant breeders bringing new varieties every year. Each of which is a necessary gamble also brings challenges in terms of growing a multitude of different varieties. Some potato varieties reach maturity in as little as 60 days, where others can take as long as 150 days, and this presents complications when trying to micromanage up to four generations of over 30 varieties in a single season. Each variety has its own special requirements and properly understanding that can take many seasons to master. While I will admit, like many farmers, I quite like driving a tractor, working with the plant breeders and eventually turning the varieties they have into commercial success for my customers is the greatest reward.

Q Which is your favourite potato variety to eat?

During winter, the swamps flood and go under water. 3 CUTHBERT-ELLEKER swamp during winter. 3 CUTHBERT-ELLEKER swamp during summer.

As a seed grower there is no question I am spoilt for choice. When it comes to a waxy variety (for potato salad, boiling or in the slow cooker) Prince of Orange has the waxiness rivalling Kipfler that holds it together even if you overcook it. It has more flavour and a gentle sweetness that really brings it up to a whole another level. It has an agreeable texture and the natural ability to absorb the cooking flavours, in my opinion at least, it is king.

Prince of Orange offers all the advantages of a Kipfler, but with none of the drawbacks, and let me add, you can mash it virtually solo, no need for garnish. A semi waxy for pork roasts or basic vegetable oil roasting, a family favourite in the old variety Norland. It is slightly floury so it crisps up really well near the end of cooking, but is waxy enough to retain some serious flavour.

PHOTOS © SKYPRINTS

With lamb roasts or a classic mash, I’ll probably grab a Rodeo or Delaware, but a Prince of Orange works here too. For the floury varieties, when the deep fryer comes out, I’m old school. For chips I am partial to Atlantic, although I’ll consider a Mac russet if its handy too. WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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For the all-rounder, my father will swear alliance to a Delaware, for me, just like each variety is different to grow, each one excels in a different way in the kitchen, so rather than “it’ll do” I’ll just reach for the right spud for the job at hand.

Q Is there anything about potato farming that you wish consumers knew or understood better? For me it is the fact that it is one of the healthier carbohydrates. I often meet people who will not eat spuds because they swore themselves off the carbs, yet with health benefits in mind are happy to bend the rules for a pasta or rice dish, but not a potato-based meal. Within the industry there are varieties that are wildly different to each other in terms of cooking quality, flavour and texture, yet most consumers have little concept of that fact. Part of that is that the immense quantity of varieties available in WA, which means that they are generally lumped into white, yellow, red and blue. In reality, the colour of the potato has almost no bearing on what the particular cooking quality is. In Western Australia I think this speaks volumes about the success of Royal Blue here, because it has for the most part only been just the one variety. As a result,

During winter, the swamps flood and go under water.

3 WHEN it comes to a waxy variety Prince of Orange has the waxiness rivalling Kipfler that holds it together even if you overcook it.

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the cooking quality has remained similar each time consumers bought a Royal Blue branded potato.

Q Look into your crystal ball — where do you hope to see the WA potato industry in five years? As an industry we have really suffered a blow from every possible direction in the last five years, from the end of the potato marketing corporation, the closure of the Smith’s chips factory, the Tomato potato psyllid being detected in WA with the associated export bans, and then finally COVID-19. Our industry has really taken the rollercoaster that doesn’t seem to end. This has meant that as many as half of our growers have left the industry and those remaining have been riding the coaster of dramatically fluctuating prices, severe over supply followed by dramatic under supply which has then led to an increase in imports competing in our own market. Moving forward, we need to leverage what we have in WA; our isolation leads us to a solid position for exporting seed potatoes and we have an excellent record for achieving ultra-low levels of disease, which is important in an international market that often struggles to obtain good quality diseasefree seed stock.

I’d like to see West Australian restaurants and retailers increase support of our local potato processors for chips and peeling stock. We have plenty of unused capacity that could be further leveraged to supply a local product grown in WA for West Australians. We may need to increase marketing around WA processed potato products to further boost consumer awareness that these products do exist and the benefits that they offer our state. In the fresh market I hope to see improved stability. To recover some certainty as well as promote better forward planning. As a seed grower, it is exceedingly difficult to forecast what spuds will be on the shelves seven years in advance. When I order my tuber stock from the laboratory that is exactly what I am trying to do. Today’s fresh market potato growers are often uncertain of what to do just a few months in advance. This leads to inability to obtain the right seed and not being able to react and supply to the market’s requirements successfully. There is a significant risk we will lose our own market share to imports if we are no longer able to make plans for the future of our own industry.


WA POTATOES

3 ZAATAR roast salmon with lemon olive oil mash.

Healthy recipes

WA Potatoes Marketing 2021 New budget and strategy Plans are being locked-in for the 2021 marketing program focusing on health messaging and inspiring consumers with simple and tasty recipes.

Seed for Schools

An in-store project has also been developed to access the point-of-sale space with retail wobblers to educate consumers. Digital media will remain a key element of the program, as well as a refreshed NOVA 93.7 radio campaign for seven months over an 11-month period. NOVA consistently achieves the highest ratings in Perth and has a large grocery buyer contingent in its audience demographics.

Following the disappointment of having to cancel the program this year, WA Potatoes are thrilled to have re-launched Seed for Schools for 2021. There were over 800 classes from 342 schools registered for 2020, which would have enabled the program to reach over 20,000 school kids, plus their teachers and parents. Since re-launching in October, there have already been a large number joining with over 250 schools signed up.

The radio campaign is targeted to reach around 575,000 listeners across breakfast and drive with each live read and advertisement. Nathan, Nat and Shaun are Perth’s #1 Breakfast show. Kate, Tim and Joel, followed by Fitzy & Wippa are Perth’s #1 Drive show. And with the biggest audience reach of the all-important retail demographic (listeners 25–54 and Grocery Buyers), Nova937 has been the perfect media partner to promote WA Potatoes to the people of Perth. Source: GFK Survey 7, 2020 released 5th November 2020

Registrations open for 2021!

Perth Royal Show 2020 Spring Farm Fair

The Perth Royal Show was cancelled this year, however RASWA coordinated a Spring Farm Fair for kids during the September school holidays. The five-day Spring Farm Fair was a farm wonderland for families and young children, to interact with farm animals, learn more about agriculture and farming in WA, and enjoy some great food. WA Potatoes contributed to the event, with a range of materials such as bookmarks, magazines and Beta Spuds contributed potatoes for a potato dig activity.

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Health notes Gut healthy dressing with Kefir Added nutrient punch from Nutritional Yeast www.superfoodly.com/ what-is-nutritionalyeast and leafy greens.

COOK’S NOTE

Kipfler low GI

If you’re not feeling fussy, just toss all ingredients in a bowl with dressing and pile on the platter.

Lower GI than many of the high starch varieties. What that means is that it won't raise your blood sugar levels too quickly and is therefore a better potato for people with diabetes.

Grilled Kipfler potato, cucumber, mint and cos salad with avocado and kefir dressing Serves | 4 (as a main), 6–8 (as a side) Ingredients Salad

Dressing (1.5 cups approx)

6 Kipfler potato, par boiled skin on 2 tbsp olive oil 1 Lebanese cucumber, halved, seeds removed and sliced on an angle Handful fresh mint leaves picked, washed and drained ½ cup frozen peas, thawed 1 baby Cos, leaves separated, washed and dried 10 snow peas, topped and sliced 5mm on a sharp angle 2 sticks celery sliced 5mm on a sharp angle Handful of celery leaves from the center of the bunch 3 radish, sliced into 2mm rounds

½ large avo ¾ cup plain kefir 1 small clove garlic ½ cup nutritional yeast 2 tbsp olive oil 2 tbsp chopped parsley 4 tbsp lemon juice Season to taste

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Method 1. Parboil the Kipfler potatoes, leaving the skin on. (About 10–15 minutes) 2. Remove them to a board when a fork will push into the potatoes with a little pressure. 3. Once cool enough to handle, slice potatoes

lengthwise through the center then place in a bowl with the olive oil. 4. Toss to coat. 5. Heat a griddle or your BBQ on high and grill the potatoes for around 5 minutes, or until they develop lovely charr marks, then turn and give them a couple of minutes on the other side before removing them to a plate to cool. 6. Once cooled layer the potatoes onto a platter with all the other ingredients in an aesthetically pleasing way.

7. Drizzle liberally with the dressing and finish with a little fresh mint. 8. To make the dressing, place all ingredients in a blender and process until smooth. Add a little water to thin the dressing if you wish. Tweak the lemon juice and yeast to suit your taste. Refrigerate until ready to use. 9. Should last three days in a sealed jar or plastic container in the refrigerator.


PHOTOS: Victoria Baker Photographer

POMEWEST

pome

update Pomewest

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From the Pomewest

contacts Pomewest Committee and Officers

Mark Scott, Chair e: markpscott@bigpond.com Mario Casotti e: mario@casottigroup.com Wayne Ghilarducci e: strathspey@modnet.com.au Jason Jarvis e: twinpack@bigpond.com Harvey Giblett e: newtonbros@wn.com.au Sam Licciardello e: sam@orchard1sixty.com.au Susie Murphy White, Project Manager e: susan.murphy-white@dpird.wa.gov.au Nardia Stacy, Executive Manager e: nardia@fruitwest.org.au

Executive Manager Season update

Pomewest budgeted Income 2020/2021 Project General Account Budget including FFS (Project Grant Funding APAL, HIA and DPIRD) Biosecurity Account Budget (FFS)

$ 474,210 47,500

Pomewest budgeted expenditure general account for 2020/2021 Project New Technology Project (Susie Murphy White) Maturity Standards Legislation & Compliance Medfly Surveillance Trapping Network (Ashmere Consulting) Systems Approach to Market Access Promotion & Publicity Local Project (Fresh Finesse) including other projects including investment in BWEB Annual Meetings & Communications Industry Sponsorships & Association Memberships Strategic Plan Administration including salary & office costs APC charge @10% of FFS income Total

$ 87,000 35,000 61,557 40,000 45,000 15,000 4,500

33,000 187,000 42,000 550,000

Pomewest budgeted expenditure biosecurity account 2020/2021 Project Codling Moth (DPIRD) Biosecurity Liaison Officer APC charge @10% of FFS income Total

APC fee-for-service charge

$ 35,500 16,520 6,000 58,030

POME FRUIT EFFECTIVE FROM 1 JANUARY 2015 Type of fruit $/kg Fresh fruit — apples, pears, Nashi, other 0.015 Processing fruit 0.005 Biosecurity FFS for fresh fruit 0.002 Biosecurity FFS for processing fruit 0.001

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BY NARDIA STACY EXECUTIVE MANAGER, POMEWEST

A

s I write this report, it’s almost time to reflect on the year that was. With the East Coast now in the stage of reporting low case numbers with minimal community spread of COVID-19, it is refreshing to be living in a country that remains to be managing the pandemic well. Still, it’s difficult to predict the future, but it’s valuable to keep ahead of the curve by being prepared.

The labour shortage, with decreased numbers of backpackers in the country, is still of concern. The early indicators are that workers are about, especially in the South West regions. We have been working with DPIRD in collaboration with a ‘Horticulture Network Group’ in the past months on the issue, and the silver lining is that industries are collaborating. It is by working together we have maintained a strong voice with the decision makers. In addition, we understand that the State Government has now opted back into the Seasonal Worker program which will further assist our bigger orchards to manage large teams.

Pacific Island and East Timorese labourers can now enter WA via the NT. Still of concern from growers about increased pay rates for the next season, and bad press around ‘ripping off’ workers. It still remains to be seen how it will play out as we get closer to harvest, but the best plan is to be well informed and endeavour to continue to look after employees well. The Strategic Plan process is now finalised and complete. We will be sharing the reports with APAL and Hort Innovation for the purpose of aligning our goals for the future and determining an action plan to identify projects that will assist particularly to increase our export capacity. We celebrate the recent news of the continuation of Future Orchards with APAL taking the lead in funding the program. With Susie as an experienced Front Line Adviser, we are well placed to continue to benefit from the program particularly when it comes to addressing our key industry objectives in the R&D space. The QFly eradication program under the management of DPIRD continues and it is hoped they can manage the return to our area freedom soon. The incursion effort has been massive as this is the largest outbreak since the very first incursion in 1989. We still wait to hear the outcome of details of the Netting Program and the rollout of the grant assistance.


POMEWEST

3 20 October Hort Industry meet about labour with Minister MacTiernan at the Minister’s office at Dumas House.

This edition See our one page summary of our new Strategic Plan for 2021–25, articles on current rates and conditions such as piece-rates, our recent promotional activities, the recent Grower Dinners, a Medfly trapping update and an insight into the Tassone Family business.

We celebrate the recent news of the continuation of Future Orchards!

Merry Christmas On a personal note I would like to thank Mark Scott, the Committee, Susie Murphy White, Ingrid Behr and Staff of the APC, the staff at DPIRD and our growers, for your confidence and support in the past year. I know that the Committee would want me to wish all our friends in the Hort Industries and beyond, a joyous festive season and a prosperous New Year for 2021. MORE INFORMATION Nardia Stacy, Executive Manager, 0411 138 103 or nardia@pomewest.net.au

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OCtOBeR 2020

WA poMe fruIt Industry strAtegIC plAn 2021-2025 VIsIon

oBjeCtIVes 1 Improve WA apple productivity and profitability to 55t/ha yield, 75% Class 1 packout and $75 spend/household/year.

A profitable and sustainable Western Australian pome fruit industry meeting market requirements and consistently satisfying customers with high quality fruit.

( Currently 48t/ha / 69% / $68 )

2 Build the strategy to export 15% of WA’s annual apple production.

MIssIon Working in partnership with stakeholders to provide industry leadership, strategic direction and innovative solutions to support a profitable and sustainable Western Australian pome fruit industry.

( Currently 100t, 15% of WA produCtIon of 35,000t = 5,000t )

3 lift WA pear productivity and profitability to 4,750 tonnes and consumption to $20 spend/household/year. ( Currently 3,800t / $18 )

StrategieS

1. Productivity and Profitability

2. Market develoPMent

3. SuPPly chain iMProveMent

4. induStry leaderShiP

Improve capability and capacity to build your profitable ‘Future Orchard’.

Drive domestic consumption and develop export opportunities for future WA industry security.

Identify and manage WA supply chain inefficiencies.

Provide industry leadership with unity and purpose, and attract funding to deliver the plan.

tacticS 1 Support capacity and capability 1 Work with APAL to create an Apple and Pear Strategy for building initiatives and WA domestic market to add benchmarking for improved value for growers. decision making to drive productivity and profitability, and manage risk (climate, soil, 2 Work with APAL, DPIRD and Fruitwest to create an Apple varieties, water, technology, and Pear Strategy for export marketing). markets to add value for 2 Develop a WA Pome Fruit growers. Industry R&D Plan to maximise orchard productivity 3 Invest in better understanding consumer preferences and and lower the costs of knowledge of WA fruit. production. 3 Improve labour planning, monitoring of efficiencies, OH&S and management.

4 Develop a clearer brand proposition for WA’s apple and pear varieties.

4 Promote commercially available and cost effective new technologies to drive productivity improvements including crop protection, remote sensing, robotics.

5 Encourage grower participation in quality assurance, food safety and traceability programs.

5 Promote improved orchard and marketing data management and analysis to enable timely and accurate decision making. 6 Manage increasingly complex biosecurity issues with investment in the WA Pome Fruit Biosecurity Strategic Plan.

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6 Re-engage with the DPIRD Apple Breeding Program for a shared pathway for future investment and clearer targets. 7 Actively work with the beverage side of the apple industry to build profitable market options for growers.

1 Work with stakeholders 1 The Pomewest Committee will provide proactive leadership to across the WA supply chain to improve WA industry cohesion ensure consumers consistently and manage Pomewest with receive quality fruit. sound governance. 2 Drive improvements in 2 Cultivate more productive cool chain integrity and relationships with APAL and fruit handling, from harvest HIA - Apple and Pear Hort to storage and retailing Fund to achieve greater including transport and retail support for WA project management and display. investment. 3 Establish a working group with 3 Manage the Pomewest growers, agents and retailers to communication strategy address WA supply chain issues to maintain the industry and inefficiencies. database, deliver timely and 4 Determine the effect of quality effective communications on profitability, price, visibility and organise state workshops and trust from the retailer’s or conferences to improve perspective. grower and supply chain knowledge. 5 Promote data sharing to drive benchmarking and continuous 4 Raise awareness of industry improvement across the supply issues and provide an industry chain. perspective on WA pome fruit 6 Identify levels of waste creation across the value chain and opportunities for value-adding to non-first grade fruit.

note: hightlighted boxes are the 2021 priorities.

industry issues with industry data and information.

AgKnowledge® connecting agriculture


POMEWEST

2020 Annual Grower Dinner Meetings

as a provider for labour in the South West region.

O

BY NARDIA STACY EXECUTIVE MANAGER, POMEWEST

We also thank, Bronwyn Walsh of Hort Innovation introducing her role as regional extension manager — we look forward to working and seeking her assistance for projects in the future. Bryn Edwards of vegetablesWA and Paul Omedei and Graeme O’Meagher of Planfarm and our own Susie Murphy White and our special guests Ingrid Behr of the Agricultural Produce Commission and Shay Crouch Perth NRM representing WA Stonefruit industry.

n 23 September and 13–14 of October Pomewest hosted the three regional dinners in the Perth Hills, Donnybrook and Manjimup as part of the major grower Regional dinners: engagement activity Perth Hills, Donnybrook for the year.

1

2

On surveying our responses from our and Manjimup. evaluations it is clear Our committee was that this format is extremely pleased to see over preferred by most of our 65 growers attend, particularly growers and we will look when such interaction seemed almost to continue these events and impossible to imagine earlier in this ‘like potentially other events in 2021. no other’ year. We thank all of those people who devoted for time, interest and for their on-going commitment of support to the industry. We also thank our speakers, Peter Cooke of Agknowledge who presented our next 2021–25 Strategic Plan, Bernice Russo of Rural Enterprises who spoke about the services of Harvest Trail

We will endeavour to be able to report the progress of our strategic plan action items which will be formulated shortly. MORE INFORMATION

3

3 MANJIMUP Grower Dinner 1. Shawn & Bec Whittaker & Jean Pessotto 2. Tony Fontanini and Fernando Pessotto. 3. Susie Murphy White, Sabina and Alex Alban.

Contact Nardia Stacy, Executive Manager, phone 0411 138 103 or email nardia@ pomewest.net.au

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PHOTOS © VICTORIA BAKER

Sure and steady for Tassone Orchard Second generation farming business based in Kirup, Western Australia.

3 JULIE and Rob Tassone inspecting apples. BY SUSIE MURPHY WHITE PROJECT MANAGER, POMEWEST

PERTH

KIRUP

Farmers Julie and Rob Tassone Location Kirup Enterprises Pink Lady, Cherry Gala, Fuji, Granny Smith, Dazzle, Sundowner apples and pomegranates

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POMEWEST

3 JULIE, Frank and Rob Tassone, Pink Lady harvest 2020.

S

ure and steady wins the race — this mantra has certainly been the case for the well-known Tassone family over the last 44 years. This second generation farming business based in Kirup Western Australia has been consistently growing premium produce into the WA market since its inception in 1976. Frank, Rob and Julie Tassone are still committed to continue the legacy set by Rob’s parents Frank and Connie (Vinci) Tassone, by continuing to supply elite quality apples to their customers. The early years saw Frank and Connie purchase the property in Kirup and then when Rob left school leased a property in Myalup to produce potatoes, which they did for 30 years. However, they kept their hand in orcharding during this time, and maintained a small orchard on the Kirup property growing Hi Early, Granny Smith and Yates varieties. Maintaining the Myalup property with the travel for over 10 years became tedious, the family decided to take the opportunity to convert the Kirup property into a fully-fledged apple orchard. They were one of the pioneer growers in the area to plant first Pink Lady block in 1987 and today, the orchard has expanded to 20-hectares and produces Pink Lady, Cherry Gala, Fuji, Granny Smith, Dazzle, Sundowner apples and pomegranates. Being enterprising and innovative by nature, they have used this approach as a model for their business. They are always researching and developing new and improved methods to become more productive and cost effective. As such, they are always open to test new growing systems and be involved in trials. For example, Rob takes great

pleasure nurturing new blocks and developing trees into full production. Rob’s favourite apples to eat are the Cherry Gala and he prefers the Granny Smith Apple to grow.

Along with Frank, Rob and Julie who still actively work the orchard, they employ three, fulltime staff and rely on 30–40 backpackers from thinning to harvest. During the 2020 harvest and the COVID19 lock down they were pro-active in implemented physical distancing, hygiene and signage measures to protect workers. They are confident the 2021 harvest will be completed without too much disruption and they are being proactive in planning their labour force for the upcoming season.

The tips that the Tassone’s would recommend for the consumer is seasonality. Gala apples are best consumed between February and May and Pink Lady from May to January because these variety’s taste, like a good wine, improves with age. You can buy the Tassone’s apples from Coles, Woolworths and Bunbury Farmers Markets. We look forward to tasting new season apples from the Tassone family very soon. MORE INFORMATION Susie Murphy White, Pomewest Project Manager, susan.murphywhite@dpird. wa.gov.au

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POMEWEST

Fair pay Let’s get it right Industrial Relations in Australia BY NARDIA STACY EXECUTIVE MANAGER, POMEWEST

L

et’s be proactive to counteract the damaging claims the fruit industry is ‘ripping off’ workers. Considering the current labour shortage and the incentives being offered by government to attract local workers, it is more important than ever to make sure we are fully transparent and renumerating our workforce correctly.

Make sure you are fully transparent and renumerating your workforce correctly.

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There are heavy fines for breaches of the regulations if you are found to be underpaying your workers. There are two industrial relations systems, Federal and State which are regulated by Fair Work Ombudsman and the Department of Mines, Industry regulation and Safety respectively. If you are a ‘Constitutional Corporation’ e.g. Proprietary Limited Company you come under the Federal Award. If you are partnership, trust or sole trader it will be the State Award — note trusts depend on who the trustee is.

For more information to assist you establish which system is applicable to your business see link www.commerce.wa.gov.au/ labour-relations/guide-who-wastate-system Keep records We have been made aware that Fair Work Ombudsman will be targeting horticulture industry this year for compliance. To protect your business, make sure you educate yourself about the award systems and keep good records for audit purposes.

See links below to assist you: • Federal system — www.fairwork. gov.au/how-we-will-help/templatesand-guides/fact-sheets/rights-andobligations/record-keeping-pay-slips • State system — www.commerce. wa.gov.au/labour-relations/ employment-records-employerobligations.

Be transparent When you are engaging personnel make sure that the employee is fully aware of how your organisation pays either by the Federal or State award or by piece-rate contract agreement signed by both parties. That way both parties are fully informed at the outset of the conditions which will avoid any common misunderstandings and future conflict or penalties. If you want to research the best method for your business, there is a really great resource video to watch — Pay and Piecework rates in the Horticulture Industry — https://m. youtube.com/watch?feature=emb_ title&v=A5lFS5jWCUw 3 MAKE sure employees are fully aware of how your organisation pays either by the Federal or State award or by piece-rate contract agreement signed by both parties.


POMEWEST

3 PIECEWORK agreements may be entered into between the employer and employee.

Employees getting piecework rates are paid by output.

3 EMPLOYERS may need to ‘top up’ the wages paid to pieceworkers to ensure they do not receive less than the minimum award wage.

Employers may need to ‘top up’ the wages paid to pieceworkers to ensure they do not receive less than the minimum award wage. Employees getting piecework rates are paid by output, such as the number of kilograms or bins of produce picked, rather than hourly rates for time worked. Practices that employers should avoid: • Don’t ask workers to overload buckets or bins • Don’t ask workers to pick bad produce for free

Links to awards for payrates: • Federal system — Horticultural Award 2020 page 43 www.fwc.gov. au/documents/documents/modern_ awards/award/ma000028/default.htm • State system — Fruit Growing and Fruit Packing Award www.wairc. wa.gov.au/en/FullAwards

Piecework Piecework agreements may be entered into between the employer and employee subject to the piecework rate being fixed and reviewed as necessary from time to time so as to enable the ‘average competent employee’ to earn during ordinary working hours not less than 15 per cent above the hourly rate of

the class of work performed (the target earnings). Such an hourly rate is to be ascertained by dividing the appropriate weekly rate by 40. Where the minimum amount received by a pieceworker falls below the target earnings for more than three consecutive ordinary working days the piecework agreement may be terminated by either party. If neither party elects to terminate the piecework agreement it continues to operate as normal. Although pieceworkers are not guaranteed to earn the target earnings based on their output, they cannot be paid less than the minimum award wage for the hours they work.

• Don’t apply group rates, where a group of workers is paid at a combined rate. To learn more on piece rates go to www.fairwork.gov.au/horticultureshowcase/pay-piecework-rates/how-touse-piecework-agreements. On this site you can gather other information on how to create an agreement, record output, setting rates, templates and tools. MORE INFORMATION Contact Nardia Stacy, Executive Manager, phone 0411 138 103 or email: nardia@pomewest.net.au

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POMEWEST

3 KIDS from Woodlands Primary.

in our recent promotional activities

T

BY NOELENE SWAIN POMEWEST PROMOTIONS CO-ORDINATOR

here is no doubt primary schools LOVE having apples involved in school activities. Whilst most kids are apple lovers, consumption is constantly under threat by highly marketed processed snack products.

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WA Grower SUMMER 2020

With an estimated 28 per cent of Aussie kids now considered overweight or obese, it is important to teach kids to enjoy fresh health fruit.

schools by providing a carton of shining red apples to implement activities within the classroom. The Apples in Schools program supplied

20 WA primary schools metropolitan The healthy eating focus within schools in September 2020, involving schools continued this October, over 1300 students across approximately to present opportunities to 44 classes. work with kids across The creativity of teachers age groups in schools and students never ceases The Apples in Schools to promote the to impress. Evaluation program supplied 20 forms, photos and work industry and good samples returned by WA primary schools in eating habits.

September 2020.

WA primary schools celebrate Crunch and Sip Week in September each year with a focus on the Great Aussie Crunch held on 7–11th September when schools across the state focused on activities to highlight the need to eat more vegetables and fruit. This created an excellent opportunity to engage with

participating classes, demonstrate the apples provided an extremely positive experience within schools. Apples were consumed in classroom programs, as well as sports carnivals, breakfast club activities and playground initiatives as well as incorporated into mental health awareness through R U OK Day.


POMEWEST

Some schools made apples the focus of school wide programs.

Fresh apples were an excellent trigger for discussions on healthy eating, sustainability, seasons and importance of supporting local producers. They were also integrated across the curriculum into lessons on maths, English, sport, art, drama, music, health and cooking. Some schools made the apples the focus of school wide programs and included extensive coverage through their newsletters and parent communications. Many primary schools make active use of Apple Slinky machines — in either the canteen, the classroom, or use as a recess treat and opportunity to connect with the students. These fun gadgets put some fun into eating apples. It was pleasing to note that many schools are still actively using apple slinky machines

that have previously been provided as part of the Apples in Schools project.

Senior School Health Expos, previously been supported, were suspended due to COVID-19 restrictions. We hope to engage in these events again in 2021. This is an excellent positive program, which has achieved strong response from teachers and active integration into the classroom programs. Future support is expected for next year, which will continue to build positive eating habits and awareness with children. In addition to the schools program, Pomewest donated apples to the 2020 South West Food Bowl. This two day

event was started in 2012 by local growers to help celebrate the “Australian Year of the Farmer”. The 1st day, Friday, focuses on introducing school children from around the South West about where your food comes from and introduces various activities around farming, food science and career and training opportunities The apples went down a treat, many students enjoying apples for morning tea after a long bus trip to Nannup. MORE INFORMATION Contact Noelene Swain, Fresh Finesse, noelene@freshf.com.au

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POMEWEST

Case study

Apple pests and export markets 3 DPIRD Manjimup Technical Officer — Helen Collie — inspecting a trap.

A

BY KIM JAMES SENIOR RESEARCH OFFICER, DPIRD

Horticulture Innovation-funded project between CSIRO, the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD), and industry body Pomewest is looking at systematic pest management and monitoring to access new export markets. This project will evaluate a ‘Systems Approach’, which involves a number of measures to provide the level of protection from a specific pest or disease that an importing country requires.

The West Australian case study is part of a broader national collaboration between industry, researchers and regulators to help Australian horticultural businesses realise export market opportunities by developing a systems approach. Systems Approaches consider the combined effect of monitoring programs, good in-field management, grading in the packinghouse and other steps that are part of good agricultural practice. With the right verification processes, we could demonstrate that fruit export is acceptable to these markets without substantially increasing the cost of production.

The project involves a surveillance network of about 450 traps across 19 orchards and 14 town sites in Manjimup and Pemberton to monitor for known pests including Mediterranean fruit fly, Light brown apple moth and Western fruit moth; and not-known pests Queensland fruit fly and Codling moth. Fruit cutting to evaluate the absence of pests of quarantine concern will also be implemented. The project will collect data from two or more measures with a systems approach, which will be analysed and modelled by CSIRO to produce supporting evidence for future Pomewest and apple industry market access applications.

• Determine the cumulative efficacy required to satisfy trading partners that apple trade via a Systems Approach will provide an acceptable level of protection from pests of quarantine concern. The case study is currently expanding its moth surveillance into other pome fruit growing areas to better understand the spread and impact of moths as pests of quarantine concern. Growers are encouraged to continue their yearly IPM and pest control programs in their orchards and their region.

The project involves a surveillance network of about 450 traps.

The case study activities include:

MORE INFORMATION Contact Susie Murphy White, Pomewest Project Manager,at: susan.murphywhite@dpird.wa.gov.au

• Develop market access options for apples produced in the south-west of the state • Monitor and control pests of quarantine concern to determine the risk arising from each systems approach measure Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development

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WA CITRUS

citrus

update WA Citrus

WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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WA CITRUS

contacts WA Citrus Committee Producer Committee Members Mary Ann O’Connor, Chair m: 0429 012 503 e: chair@wacitrus.com.au Richard Eckersley Shane Kay

From the

industry

Andrew Sorgiovanni Cliff Winfield Daniel Ying

Affiliate Committee Members Damien Guthrey

BY MARY ANN O’CONNOR CHAIR, WA CITRUS

Brett Heather

WA Citrus Office Building 16, 3 Baron-Hay Court, SOUTH PERTH WA 6151 Bronwyn Walsh, Industry Development Manager m: 0400 873 875 e: industrymanager@wacitrus.com.au Kate Cox, Administrative Services m: 0439 899 600 e: admin@wacitrus.com.au Helen Newman, Biosecurity Representative e: biosecurity@wacitrus.com.au

about WA Citrus is the industry body representing citrus growers and industry in Western Australia. WA Citrus aims to: • Assist in the development of a profitable and sustainable citrus industry in WA • Provide services, facilities and support to assist WA citrus growers supply premium citrus in the local, national and export markets • Assist with growing the consumption of WA citrus fruit

I

t is nice to see some normality to the year as planning for the traditional end of season industry day in November is well underway at the time of writing this article.

In the background research has also continued over the year with results planned to be presented at the Industry day and at the proposed Tech Forum in March. Not to get overconfident that times are getting back to normal, the turmoil of the labour market for spring and summer harvest crops continues including competitive rates for labour driven by the shortage. We are grateful that we’ve been able to participate in the ongoing conversation with DPIRD and fellow horticultural industries to work through these issues.

From November 14 WA moved to controlled border entry into WA, reminding us to maintain our COVID plans to keep businesses ticking over and minimise the impact on business continuity in the event of cases in WA. DPIRD are also leading WA activities of surveillance of Fall armyworm, and eradication response of Queensland fruit fly providing regular updates via email or on their website. Thanks to our biosecurity representative Helen Newman for keeping an eye on all things ‘Biosecurity’ and the biosecurity working group.

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Weather events such as hail in the West Gingin area and extremely strong winds in Carnarvon have also had an impact on fruit and potentially supply. Exports were able to go ahead this season meaning a stronger domestic market for navels than would otherwise have been the case. Seedless lemons from new southern orchards were also in the market this year. I encourage all our growers and industry members to look after themselves in the coming months. Stay connected, plan for next season and enjoy the festive season with family and friends. I look forward to catching up with you at the Industry day. MORE INFORMATION Contact Mary Ann O'Connor on 0429 012 503 or chair@wacitrus.com.au •  More information is available on the DPIRD website at agric.wa.gov.au. Search for ‘fall armyworm in Western Australia’ • COVID movement wa.gov.au •  Helen Newman, WA Citrus biosecurity representative, biosecurity@wacitrus. com.au


WA CITRUS

Trial netting structure over grapefruit in Carnarvon.

In the orchard K

BY BRONWYN WALSH INDUSTRY DEVELOPMENT MANAGER (IDM)

evin and Bronwyn caught up with citrus growers in Carnarvon, including grapefruit growers Jo Simmonds from Bentwater Plantation, and Andy Svilicich; lime growers Dudley and Susan Maslen, Big River Plantation and navel orange growers Tam and Jeremy Chinnery. 25

Heavy winds in May caused fruit drop and stripping of leaves in the area that trees are still recovering from (see Figure 1). Mites were also found on limes in some trees on outer rows of blocks. A subject always worth discussion in any garden or orchard, and also covered in Rachelle’s article, is ‘Pruning’. In the sunny and windy conditions of Carnarvon, pruning to reduce scratches on fruit in windy conditions, WHS and managing tree size needs to be balanced with the need to protect fruit from sunburn. Carnarvon

Wind speeds at which damage occurs

Badgingarra Gingin aero

AVE WIND SPPED (KM/HR)

20

Wokalup Manjimup

15

Mildura airport

10

Part of the DPIRD protected cropping trial has included a trial netted structure over grapefruit trees with reported increased packouts. This work will link with the other research being conducted in other regions in WA, as wind blemish is reported as a major cause of reduced quality in WA citrus orchards. MORE INFORMATION

5 0

3 KEVIN and Susan Maslen look at damage on lime leaves, confirmed as mites.

When most damage occurs Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Contact Bronwyn Walsh on 0400 873 875 or industrymanager@wacitrus.com.au.

Dec

MONTH FIGURE 1. AVERAGE WIND SPEEDS AT 9AM FROM BOM WEATHER STATIONS IN CITRUS PRODUCTION REGIONS. WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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WA CITRUS

80 to over 500 workers are required in WA at the peak of the citrus season.

Labour Are you prepared for 2021

S

omewhere in WA, citrus fruit is being harvested every month of the year, with 80 to over 500 workers required at the peak of the season (see Figure 1).

Not only has availability been an issue, there is also additional costs to businesses in time and quality of new workers and retention of workers. Most recently horticulture industries, DPIRD staff and labour providers have worked over the last several months to improve recruitment, retention and movement processes, met with the Minister, and collected and reviewed relevant data.

The challenges seen this season will continue into next year with traditional workers, including backpackers and Pacific Islander workers returning home creating an increasingly competitive environment for productive workers.

Looking forward over next 18 months labour availability is identified as the top factor to impact production (E&Y 2020).

600

NO. WORKERS PER MONTH

Plan early and consider: • Traditional recruitment methods may not work so look at other options being advertised • Consider orchard practices and their impact on harvest timing and period and related labour needs • Look at incentives you can offer to attract workers in a more competitive environment, as well as the impact of increased costs • Contact relevant ‘experts/ information sources’ to understand your options

700

• Have a Plan B and C.

500 400

The need for casual workers will increase from January to June 2021, and higher demand from July to December 21 than this year from July December.

300 200 100 0

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Jan

Feb

Mar

MONTH FIGURE 1. ESTIMATED MONTHLY LABOUR REQUIREMENT FOR THE WA CITRUS INDUSTRY.

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Tips to growers

WA Grower SUMMER 2020

Apr

May

The Ernst and Young report said where casual labour gaps are more likely to materialise: • Remote or less attractive areas are expected to be more impacted by casual labour shortages;


WA CITRUS

3 LABOUR availability is identified as the top factor to impact production.

• Specific commodities, that have very high labour intensity (incl. citrus), time-sensitivity and/or had picking conditions will be more vulnerable; • Impacted by border closure; • Smaller growers with low-cost business models or lower volume of work will remain under pressure or lower volume of work.

Reaching our

s n a f s u r t ci

O

ver the last five years our investment in social media in our promotions program has shown an increase in reach from approximately 6,000 to 12,000 for Facebook and up to 18,800 for Instagram (see Figure 1).

Access to workers, from November 14, WA moved to a controlled interstate border. There are still rules for interstate travellers depending on the level of risk and use of G2G pass.

The seasonal work program is working through a number of complex options, recognising how important this is to industry. MORE INFORMATION • Madec Harvest Trail, 1800 062 332 • Rural Enterprises, (08) 6166 9124 •  Seasonal Workers Program, Melissa Denning •  Studium www.studium.work/ jobsinfoodandag

Facebook

Instagram

30000 25000

REACH

One-off travel allowances between $150 and $500 are available to eligible applications taking up employment depending on region in which employees have taken up work.

35000

20000 15000 10000 5000 0

2016

2017

2018

2019

2020

YEAR FIGURE 1. THE REACH OF INSTAGRAM AND FACEBOOK POSTS FROM WA CITRUS. One of the highest at a reach of 1,900 was a post on Facebook featuring Andrew and Steve Pergoliti. If you would like tips on how to get your business onto social media or effective messaging please contact Noelene Swaine our Promotions Coordinator.

MORE INFORMATION • Bronwyn Walsh: 0400 873 875 or industrymanager@wacitrus.com.au • Noelene Swaine, Fresh Finesse, 0419 047 983 or noelene@freshf.com.au

•  G2G pass and Primary Industries Workers Regional Travel and Accommodation Support Scheme DPIRD contact via workforce@dpird.wa.gov.au •  Highly recommended to visit wa.gov.au to get the most-up-to-date information on travel restrictions as conditions can change at any time •  Primary industries workers regional travel and accommodation support scheme at DPIRD website.

YOU CAN FOLLOW OR LIKE POSTS FROM WA CITRUS AT:

@wacitrus #wacitrus WACitrus

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WA CITRUS

Afourer

Best practice canopy management techniques.

canopy management project BY RACHELLE 1 JOHNSTONE AND STEVEN FALIVENE 2 1 DPIRD 2 NEW SOUTH WALES DPI

W

A growers are taking part in a project to develop best practice canopy management techniques that will improve long-term yields and minimise alternate bearing in Afourer mandarins. The project is funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia and led by Steven Falivene at New South Wales Department of Primary Industries (DPI), while Rachelle Johnstone from DPI and Regional Development will be coordinating activities in WA. Afourer mandarins are recognised for producing high yields (60–90 tonnes per hectare) during the early years of production, sometimes peaking over 100 tons per hectare.

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However, as the trees grow large the yield begins to decline and alternate bearing becomes more prominent. Some growers have reported average yields of 35 to 40 tonnes per hectare. Excessive vigour and unmanaged watershoot growth are thought to contribute to yield decline in Afourer trees by shading the lower canopy. Alternate bearing contributes to yield decline because the low crop load in ‘off’ years reduces long-term average yields.

In the short-term alternate bearing produces low-value small fruit in high crop load years, and in low crop load years leads to oversized fruit. The project will investigate pruning strategies through replicated trials and demonstrations to minimise vigour and water shoots with the aim of improving long term yields and reducing alternate bearing. This project has two objectives. Firstly, to develop best practice canopy management techniques to improve long-term yields and minimise alternate bearing in Afourer mandarins.

Secondly, to develop capacity of Afourer growers in Australia by collating information locally and overseas then implementing on-farm trials Case studies conducted on a sample of Afourer growers in Australia highlight the numerous management options currently being trialled by growers including hand thinning, chunk pruning, limb bending, annual limb removal, autumn water shoot removal and mechanical hedging. The trial treatments will investigate multiple regrowth management events aligned with best management practices currently used by some Australian Afourer growers and recommended by South African researchers. The management of the canopy and water shoots is not limited to hand pruning and includes mechanical hedging treatments. It is thought that developing a good limb structure and managing regrowth in autumn are important practices. The case study and background information report also concluded that water shoots dominating the canopy is a common theme amongst growers that have problems with productivity. Afourer growers in Harvey and Dandaragan will be demonstrating different pruning strategies to see what impact they have on fruit size and yield at harvest in 2021. MORE INFORMATION Rachelle Johnstone: rachelle.johnstone@dpird.wa.gov.au Steven Falivene: steven.falivene@dpi.nsw.gov.au

Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development

CITRUS FUND This project has been funded by Hort Innovation, using the citrus research and development levy and contributions from the Australian Government. Hort Innovation is the grower owned, not-forprofit research and development corporation for Australian horticulture.


STONEFRUIT

stonefruit

update Stonefruit WA

WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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STONEFRUIT

Value Chain Facilitator

contacts Stonefruit Sub-Committee Danny Di Marco, Chair e: dimarconson@gmail.com Anthony Fullam

e: afullam@wn.com.au

Bruno Delsimone

e: bdelsimone@mercermooney.com.au

Anthony Caccetta

e: antc83@hotmail.com

Mark Scott

e: markpscott@bigpond.com

Sebastian Fiolo

e: karragullen@bigpond.com

Mick Padula

e: mickpadula@yahoo.com.au

Robert Giumelli

e: juroorchard@live.com.au

Shay Crouch, Value Chain Facilitator

e: shay.crouch@perthnrm.com e: (08) 9374 3306

APC fee for service charge Stone fruit effective from 1 November 2009 Type of fruit

$/kg

All fresh stone fruit (apricots, cherries, loquats, nectarines, peaches and plums)

0.015

Processing fruit

0.006

what’s on... 2020

December to March

Carry out in store tasting and activations

2021

Late March

New project proposals due to APC committees

T

BY SHAY CROUCH VALUE CHAIN FACILITATOR, STONEFRUIT WA

Update

he season is well and truly here, and we are hopeful that with the great end to the previous season consumers are jumping straight back in and buying.

It is fantastic to welcome Scarlet Roxby back as a Support Officer for another stonefruit season and I applaud her for all the hard work she put into organising the successful season launch. After a public-focussed season launch in previous years, in 2020 we shook things up and focussed on the entire supply chain, in a networking style sundowner. We held the event at The Shoe in Yagan Square (A Buy West Eat Best program partner), hosting 80 guests including retailers, wholesalers, orchardists and appropriate industry members for an evening of appreciation and celebration for the season ahead. A range of stonefruits were featured on the menu and/or displays, giving retailers a range of reference points when it comes to stonefruit and the activities the industry are carrying out to improve the awareness and sustainability of the industry.

This event not only promoted our great fruits, it provided an opportunity to thank the supply chain and the growers for all the work they do supplying high quality and delicious West Australian stonefruit to WA customers.

A spark of enthusiasm came from the night, with guests provided invaluable experiences to draw upon throughout the season ahead. A more comprehensive article will be available in the next issue of WA Grower. Before the season really cranked up, I was in the South West attending the Pome Grower meetings in Donnybrook and Manjimup in midOctober. It was great to get out and meet some more of the South West growers, it is always good to put a face to the name.

Building awareness of local in-season stonefruit.

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STONEFRUIT

I would also like to thank those of you who invite and welcome me onto your property, give me a tour of the orchard and chat about how and why you grow stonefruit and the challenges you face. These really are the highlights of my job, thank you. The Committee held two meetings recently, on the 9th September and 20th October. Key topics have been biosecurity, labour shortages and the projects ahead, including our commitment in the BWEB Good Choice Campaign, Season Launch, In store tastings, the Support Officer Role and more. With the Queensland fruit fly outbreak in Dalkeith being of grave concern, the committee wrote a letter the Minister for Agriculture regarding the importance of eradication of this pest. This was then raised in parliament by the Shadow Minister where it was noted that DPIRD fully intend to eradicate this pest again. This is what we would like to see as an industry, and we will continue to make sure this remains the priority of the State. When there are issues of concern as growers, please make sure you contact either myself or the committee so we can be active in attempting to alleviate the issues. ●

Good Choice Campaign

W

e are entering our second year of the Good Choice Campaign run through Buy West Eat Best. With great success in year one, we are eager to see the effects of a second year of this marketing, which continues to build awareness of local stonefruit being in season. The end of season report on the campaign saw continued growth in our TV commercial reach and exceeded the planned ‘Targeted Audience Rating Points’ (TARP’s). This season we will be seeing the TV commercial on Channel Seven and GWN in the first three weeks of December and then again in the second half of January. Catch up TV via 7Plus and 9Now will also feature the stonefruit commercial in this time.

Now for those listening on the radio, you can hear the ad on Nova 93.7 and Southern Cross Austereo in December and then again mid-February. Selected IGA’s have XSight screens in their stores and last year we saw an uplift in sales across the shops where stonefruit was advertised. This year we will be utilising this service in two-week blocks over the new year and again at the beginning of February when school goes back. MORE INFORMATION For more information contact Shay via email shay.crouch@perthnrm.com or phone (08) 9374 3306.

This campaign focuses on the promotion of peaches specifically in the radio and TV commercials, though across the other media stonefruit is featured more broadly. Using this multipronged approach, working closely with BWEB and aligning our social media activities, we expect to see uplift in sales across the entire stonefruit category.

3 FLOREAT Forum.

Being a partner with BWEB also brings other opportunities throughout the season, including participation at retail activations (e.g. Floreat Forum in October) and their assistance at the Season Launch. Though October was a bit early for much of our stonefruit, it was great to chat with consumers and see their excitement for the upcoming season. ● MORE INFORMATION For more information contact Shay via email shay.crouch@perthnrm.com or phone (08) 9374 3306.

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STONEFRUIT

Hort Innovation’s Summerfruit Annual Report BY SCARLET ROXBY MERCHANDISER, STONEFRUIT WA

W

ith the release of the Hort Innovation’s Summerfruit Annual Report, key figures have been released regarding the levy’s expenditure in regard to research & development of the industry. With 23 R&D investments underway, it is important to understand the projects are often national, though relevant to the WA industry. With a new Hort Innovation (HIA) Extension Manager in WA, it is our goal to secure more HIA funding into WA. One consumer-sourced project delivered this year is the Harvest to Home dashboard (www.harvesttohome.net.au). This dashboard provides regular household purchase data and insight reporting on apricots, nectarines, peaches and plums.

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“Recent activity shows that apricots were increasing quickly, at 9.3 per cent in terms of dollars ($), while increasing (5.8 per cent) in terms of volume (kg). Buying household percentage fell from 27 per cent to 26 per cent. The average dollar spend rose from $7.38 to $8.11. Apricots remained unchanged in terms of average weight purchased (kg).” Extracted from Harvest to Home, Apricots.

For example, projects regarding Qfly eradication, exotic spotted wing drosophila control and Xylella bacteria vector research, new apricot variety production for fresh and dried varieties and biosecurity requirement policy for international export (e.g. low dose bromide fumigation of plums). The Hort Innovation Summerfruit Fund supports the submission of applications for new and renewed minor use permits of the industry, as well as data generating activities to support chemical permits and registrations, and strategic agrichemical reviews. Their support helped secure emergency permits for crop protection chemicals as a result of detection of Fall Armyworm in Australia for the first time in 2020. These permits can be found in the report in more detail, and permit updates will be released via their e-newsletter.

Permits can be found in the report in more detail.

The current Summerfruit Strategic Investment Plan 2017–21 is due to be renewed in the coming year. Performance analysis will evaluate the progression of the current plan’s ambitions and help guide ongoing priorities for investment. In regard to the R&D project pathways, six investments were completed in the 2019–20 period, with four new investments confirmed, and fourteen projects are ongoing. Please note three of these projects are funded through HIA as they are more broadly across horticulture, however, still assist the R&D of summer fruits. While these projects are primarily based on the East and South coasts of Australia, the information received can assist in WA’s summer fruit industry.

Finally, an update on the marketing campaign for domestic and international advertisements. Some content included a range of recipes, images and videos targeted at both domestic and international consumers, in partnership with MyFoodBook (www.myfoodbook.com.au).


STONEFRUIT

3 CARAMELISED peach crumble cup recipe, created in partnership with @nourish_naturally.

Stonefruit inspired media content created 13.9 million opportunities for engagement.

Print, digital and social media content and coverage reached 13.9 million opportunities for Australians to see the summer-fruit inspired content. Hort Innovation organised an exclusive breakfast event in December 2019, hosting 20 key media and influencers in Sydney’s CBD. The content created from this event was published in OK! Magazine’s February issue and Women’s Day February and March editions, reaching over one million people.

Food and lifestyle influencers @sugaretal and @nourish_naturally were engaged to produce three recipes inspired by summer fruit.

PHOTO © @AUSSIESUMMERSTONEFRUIT & @NOURISH_NATURALLY

International export activities included a wide variety of campaign and marketing to engage customers from three target countries: China, Thailand and Malaysia. The campaign of Taste Australia cut across all three countries and delivered more than AUD$1 million in gross merchandise value (fruit sold during activities), engaged more than 50 million consumers and delivered a return on investment of more than 4:1. The COVID-19 pandemic only disrupted the flow of these campaigns during February, with only slight modifications required during this period, however, all stock was promoted and sold as previously planned. ● MORE INFORMATION

PHOTO © @AUSSIESUMMERSTONEFRUIT & @SUGARETAL

For more information, visit: www.horticulture.com.au/growers/ summerfruit-fund/

3 PLUM and Nectarine ginger pavlova recipe, created in partnership with @sugaretal.

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STONEFRUIT

Grower profile:

Sebastian Fiolo S & C Fiolo

T

here are over 170 stonefruit growers in WA and they all have a story to tell. We recently got to chat with Sebastian Fiolo and how he started his orchard in Karragullen. Q: Where is your farm and how long have you been orcharding there?

Q: What is your favourite stonefruit you grow?

Our family own and operate fruit orchards in Karragullen. My parents migrated from Sicily and began farming fruit and vegetables in Karragullen in 1958 on our original 27 acre orchard.

I find it hard to say which is my favourite stonefruit as I have great passion in growing all stonefruit, but if I have to single out one, it would be apricots. The reason for this is that the season is quite short only running for about 10 weeks from November to early January, so our customers get excited when the season begins.

In the 1990s we purchased two more properties to extend our planting of stonefruit and to progress with modern plantings. In 2015, with our parents moving into retirement, myself and my brotherin-law Robert decided to take the challenge and purchase a larger orchard by acquiring an additional 30 acres where we chose to begin again from the bare dirt to plant an additional 20 acres of orchard incorporating the latest fruit varieties and modern orchard planting techniques, paving our way into the future of orcharding in Western Australia. Q: What do you grow in your orchard? Currently, we farm over 60 acres of orchard planted over four properties in Karragullen. Our fruit ranges from white and yellow flesh peaches and nectarines, plums, pluots, apricots, cherries, Astringent and Non Astringent persimmons nashi pears, apples, donut peaches and donut nectarines. Our orchard is open for farmgate sales Monday to Saturday for the general public, giving people the opportunity to purchase fresh fruit from the farm and to see how our fruit is grown on a larger scale.

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We have gone through may changes in the apricot market and with some of the new varieties we are currently trialling, it will take the apricot market to new heights giving consumers a taste experience they have never had before. Watch out for great things! Q: How about your favourite stonefruit recipe? Coming into summer, nothing is better on a weekend than great friends and great food. To accompany this, a perfect summer drink that showcases WA grown sweet juicy peaches is the Summer Peach Sangria. It's simple, refreshing and is a celebration of WA's fantastic stone fruit! It's definitely worth a try and you won't be disappointed: www.buywesteatbest.org.au/recipes/ summer-peach-sangria Q: Are you interested in exploring export markets? My personal opinion is that WA grows some of the best quality stonefruit that is as good or better than other major growing Countries around the world. I believe WA should explore new export markets and showcase the great produce we have to offer.

With changes in stonefruit varieties and quality, I am confident we can create and move forward in strengthening our name and products on the world stage. Our business is always keen to explore new export opportunities as I think we should always try to broaden our markets, including overseas, especially to drive our business forward in the future. Q: What would be your key message for consumers about WA stonefruit? My message to all consumers is to support WA stonefruit one hundred percent. I stress that the WA stonefruit growers put in so much time and hard work to give the WA public a showcase of amazing fresh produce that is great quality and of exceptional taste. We strive as growers to give the WA public beautiful stonefruit with a taste experience that keeps them coming back for more. As a grower, there is no greater satisfaction than positive feedback from our customers wanting more and more and that is what makes me strive to reach greater heights. Also remember BUY WEST EAT BEST! ● MORE INFORMATION For more information contact Shay via email shay.crouch@perthnrm.com or phone (08) 9374 3306.


YOUR BUSINESS

your

business Your business WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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Do you need a

business plan?

F

BY CHRIS PUCKRIDGE RURAL AND SMALL BUSINESS FINANCIAL COUNSELLOR, RURAL WEST

or many people running small to medium sized businesses the thought of writing a business plan can be horrifying! Why would I need it? We know what we are doing! Sounds like a waste of time! We are too busy to be mucking around with that! Our business is only small, we don’t really need it! I have a business plan, it’s in my head! These are common responses when the idea of a business plan is raised.

A business plan can be as simple or as complex as you want it to be.

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So why would you need a business plan? In many businesses things can change fairly quickly, the owners of the business might be long standing but there are others, who work for or work with the business, that often come and go.

An example of this could be the key staff in the business such as employees, or key suppliers who are critical to the business success. Other key players, such as agents that have the role of marketing produce, or perhaps bank managers and other financiers who provide long term and seasonal funding, may need this information.

And then there are supporting businesses like agronomic services, labour contractors and many others who can be critical to a business’s success. The business owners themselves also need to be clear, especially when it’s a family run business and there are two or three partners working as a team. How do you keep this wide range of critical people and organisations on board with what you are doing and what you want to do? How do you keep on the same wavelength and how do you change when you need to, and how do you stay firm in what you are doing when you need to be consistent and all “sing of the same sheet”? The answer to all of the above questions could be: a business plan!

3 THE plan can be broken up into different sections as there may be parts of it that you don’t want to share with third parties.


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What does a business plan look like? A business plan can be as simple or as complex as you want it to be, there are many examples available online and for many farming businesses it can be kept as a simple list of headings with some detail under each one. Here’s an example that some WA farming businesses have used recently: Business purpose

Why does the business exist? What do the owners expect from it?

People

Who sets the long-term direction? Who are the owners?

Management

Who has to deliver on objectives?

Operational staff

Who are the key people, what are their skills and experience?

Industry and business environment

What are the external factors that are likely to impact on the business?

Business assets

What are the hard assets of the business and what is their quality, their current efficiency and future potential?

Business performance and outlook

What are the results compared to benchmarks?

Productivity

What has the business produced in the past five years — year on year?

Costs

What are the costs of running the business and are there any that are being focused on?

Return On Assets

What is the last year’s ROA compared to the previous years?

Outlook

Where is the business going?

Financial structure and gearing

Appropriateness of financial structure relative to assets and income.

What are the options to increase the business performance?

This could be just one or two or a longer list that can be ranked.

Strategic position

Provide a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) on your business.

Plan

What is your key plan for the next 12 months? What, how, who, when?

Budgets, liquidity, and profit

Include a brief section on each of these that summarises how you do these, by when and who is responsible?

Monitoring and performance management

Who will monitor the key measures of the business to make sure that they are being done and who will pick up on things that are not being done or not being done well?

How does it sound so far? This may look like a gigantic document, but it can be done in a very brief format or it can be done in great detail depending on what you want. A business plan can be as brief as 1–2 pages but is most commonly 10–15 pages and can be as large as you like if you want more detail. The plan can also be broken up into different sections as there may be parts of it that you don’t want to share with third parties. Remembering that it is your plan, and you can use it how you want to use it.

So, what are the benefits of having a business plan? More and more business plans are being requested by financial institutions if you are applying for finance or other financial needs. Banks and other lenders will often feel more confident in providing funds to a business where they can see a plan that can monitored throughout the year, as well as transparency.

Business plans are also often requested by government and other bodies if you are applying for any grants or funding. In general, a business plan can be developed in year one and then amended as you go along to suit changing needs. It can then be easily updated each year and reissued to your key stakeholders within the business and even to some outside of your business.

The biggest benefit though is this! The single biggest power of a business plan is what you will get out of it by writing it yourself or amongst your partners or family members.

This is the absolute number one benefit in giving you a much deeper knowledge and stronger insight into the why, what, where, when and how of your business. Need a hand? If you need a hand to write the plan there are many professional organisations that are skilled in assisting you and can provide you with the right framework and coaching to develop your plan. You could also contact us at Rural West on 1800 612 004 and we can have a talk with you about it.

Business plans are often requested if you are applying for grants or funding.

The developing of a business plan by the business owner and operators is a wonderful opportunity to discuss what you are actually doing and for you to reflect on the business and get a deeper understanding of what it is that is really important for you and your fellow stakeholders.

MORE INFORMATION Supported by the State and Federal governments, Rural West works with a wide range of primary producers and regional small business owners to improve their position and profitability. Call 1800 612 004 or visit ruralwest.com.au for more information.

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Help

is available BY MELISSA DENNING LABOUR SCHEME FACILITATOR

T

The WA Government has also expanded the travel allowance to Working Holiday Makers and Seasonal Workers moving to regional areas in WA.

With backpacker numbers dropping from 145,000 to 63,000 there are calls for anyone and everyone to pick and pack this year’s harvest.

From December 1, 2020, all job seekers participating in employment service programs were immediately eligible for the Relocation Assistance to Take Up a Job (RATTUAJ) program.

he COVID-19 pandemic has certainly made everyone think outside of the box.

Eligible workers who move to specific regions will be able to claim accommodation rebates.

3 THE State and Federal Governments are providing a variety of programmes to assist growers to attract and retain workers.

Growers are reporting that it is hard to attract workers and in response to this, the State and Federal Governments are providing a variety of programmes to assist growers to attract and retain workers.

Relocations Assistance Packages Western Australian Government Eligible workers who move to specific regions will be able to claim up to $40 a night in accommodation rebates for up to 12 weeks — up to a maximum total rebate of $3,360. Workers will also be able to claim $150 for travel to the Peel, South-West, Great Southern, Wheatbelt, Mid-West or Goldfields-Esperance regions, $350 for travel to the Gascoyne or Pilbara, and $500 for travel to the Kimberley for agricultural work.

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Federal Government

From November 1, 2020, relocation assistance was made available to people who relocate to harvest and regional areas to take up short-term agricultural work (minimum 120 hours of work, plus a minimum of six weeks work, to qualify for the relocation assistance), including Australians who are not receiving income support and those with the right to work in Australia: • $3,000 if person relocates to a capital city • $6,000 if person relocates to a regional area • An extra $3,000 if person relocates with a dependent.


YOUR BUSINESS

If a person relocates to take up shortterm agricultural work, they may be eligible to receive up to: • $6,000 if person is an Australian worker • $2,000 migrant workers (if person is a visa holder with the right to work in Australia). The program is being rolled out by the Harvest Trail Service Providers (HTSPs), which is Rural Enterprises in WA www.ruralenterprises.com.au/hts However, as the HTSPs are engaged by government to assist with jobs in specific regions (which do not cover all of the country) the Department of Education, Skills and Employment (DESE) will shortly announce a provider to deal with horticultural areas outside of the 16 regions (e.g. MADEC).

Recruitment Assistance Western Australia The Western Australian Government has invested significant money into the Work Out Yonder and Wander campaign, aimed at attracting young Australians to agricultural work. Employers can advertise for free on the following websites: • Harvest Trail • Job Active • Rural Enterprises. And create a profile and search for workers on Studium, www. jobsinregionalwa.com.au/ home

generic website for workers and employers to connect. The Seasonal Worker Programme allows workers from the Pacific and TimorLeste to work in Australia for up to nine months each year. Due to logistics this year, workers would need to be secured through a labour hire company. For more information, please contact Melissa Denning at vegetablesWA or one of the approved labour hire companies listed below: • The Job Shop: Andrew Coldbeck, 0427 703 851 • The Connect Group: Michael Fryszer, 0417 347 716 • Owen Pacific: Grant Owen, 0429 585 356 • Labour Solutions: David Cooper, 0433 455 926 • FIP Group: Nakita Lima, 0408 897 567.

Upskilling or training of staff to encourage retention Western Australia Access to upskilling and retraining workers is now easier than ever through the WA Government’s $57 million package for the WA TAFE and training sector. The Lower Fees, Local Skills initiative reduces fees across 39 high priority courses.

The WA Government has invested significant money into the Work Out Yonder and Wander campaign.

Federal The Federal Government supports the Harvest Trail Office (www. ruralenterprises.com.au/hts) and the Harvest Trail Information Service (https://jobsearch.gov.au/harvest). Rural Enterprises provides a free placement service for growers in their catchment area. The details of the area that Rural Enterprise covers can be found at www.ruralenterprises.com.au/ growers. Growers outside of the Rural Enterprise areas have free access to the Harvest Trail Information Service. The Federal Government has also invested in Job Hub (https://jobhub. foundu.com.au/) which is a more

15 free short courses are also available in areas including hospitality, agriculture, logistics, cyber security, civil construction and small business. The free short courses can also be used as a credit towards a full qualification from the Lower Fees, Local Skills initiative. The new ‘Introduction to Production Horticulture’ skillset will prepare workers for entry level roles in horticulture. This new skillset covers safe work practice in the horticultural industry; and the skills and knowledge to either plant or harvest horticultural crops, depending on the season and location. The WA horticulture industry is a significant employer in regional and remote communities and the new short

course will provide relevant skills for those looking to work in the billiondollar industry. The WA Government has reduced the training fees for VET qualifications in priority areas. A second round of fee reductions are to commence on January 1, 2021. Courses that have a 50 per cent reduction in fees include Certificate II and III Production Horticulture. Other available short courses are: • MAA18 Auschem Accreditation — Risk Management in Pesticide Use: Esperance, Harvey, Katanning, Manjimup, Margaret River, Mount Barker, Narrogin • MAA19 Auschem Reaccreditation: Katanning, Manjimup, Margaret River, Mount Barker, Narrogin • MAA11 Chainsaw: Albany, Busselton, Esperance, Katanning, Manjimup, Margaret River, Mount Barker, Narrogin • MAA76 Elevating Work Platform TLILIC0005 Licence to operate a boom-type elevating work platform (boom length 11 meters or more): Albany, Manjimup • MAA72 Fire Equipment Training: Albany, Esperance, Katanning, Manjimup, Narrogin • MAB70 First Aid: Albany, Busselton, Esperance, Katanning, Manjimup, Margaret River, Mount Barker, Narrogin • MAA82 Forklift TLILIC0003 Licence to operate a forklift truck: Albany, Esperance (Ravensthorpe), Katanning, Manjimup, Margaret River • MAA82-R Forklift Refresher TLILIC0003 Licence to operate a forklift truck: Albany, Esperance, Katanning • TLID1001 Manual Handling (Goods): Katanning • AO314P Occupational Health and Safety Representatives Course: Albany, Esperance, Katanning • A0876P Occupational Health and Safety Representatives Refresher: Albany, Esperance, Katanning • MAA20 Operate Tractors (1/2 price): Albany, Manjimup • MAA23 Side by Side (1/2 price): Albany • MAB26 Welding General: Albany, Bunbury WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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• MAA81 Work Safely at Heights: Albany, Esperance, Jerramungup, Katanning, Manjimup, Narrogin. Link for above Short Courses: www.southregionaltafe.wa.edu.au/ short-courses Additional training is also available at Muresk Institute (www2.dtwd.wa.gov. au/mureskinstitute/about-us) and 2 Work in Oz (http://2workinoz.com.au/). For more information visit the Jobs and Skills WA website at www.jobsandskills.wa.gov.au

Federal The Federal Government is supporting employers through a boost to the apprenticeships age subsidy (www.employment.gov.au/boostingapprenticeship-commencements) to encourage employers to take on new apprentices and trainees. The Federal Government also has an incentive for older Australians to reskill, however this has been running for several years and is not a response to the Pandemic, but is available: (https://skillscheck.com.au/). JobTrainer is a partnership between the Federal Government and state and territory governments to establish a new $1 billion Fund. The Federal Government is providing $500 million in 2020–21 and this is being matched by contributions from state and territory governments.

Job seekers and young people, including school leavers, can now take advantage of subsidised training to learn skills for jobs in demand. JobTrainer funding is available for accredited diplomas, certificates or short courses, based on a list agreed between the National Skills Commission and the state and territory governments. State and territory governments are responsible for determining which qualifications and short courses to prioritise from the agreed list, with focus on training in areas of anticipated employment growth.

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Managing your overheads when payments are late BY SMALL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION

D

uring and following the COVID-19 emergency period, some growers have noticed that their business customers are slower to pay and in some cases, seem to be deliberately prolonging payments to help control their own cash flow. However, even when invoices go unpaid, you still have costs to meet in your business.

What are business overheads? Business overheads are expenses incurred to support your business that are not directly related to a specific product or service. Some examples are wages for staff, rent on premises, insurances and utility costs.

These business overheads are referred to as fixed costs as the cost remains relatively constant, regardless of the fluctuations in sales volumes.

Managing the impact of slow payments on your ability to meet your business overheads is essential to protect the health of your finances and make your business viable over the long-term. 3 REVIEW every invoice before payment and ask whether you really need to keep incurring the expense.

If an expense is justified, shop around for alternative suppliers.


YOUR BUSINESS

3 REDUCING your overheads without compromising your operations, can result in a more profitable business.

It’s very useful to understand the total of these fixed costs on a weekly, monthly and annual basis. It’s also good to understand that reducing your overheads without compromising your operations, can result in a more profitable business.

Steps to managing overheads STEP 1: Review all expenses Zero based budgeting is a repeatable approach that means you review every expense regularly to assess whether the continued cost is necessary. It is very useful for ongoing cost management in your business. Review every invoice before payment and ask whether you really need to keep incurring the expense. Some items you may be able to dispense with include subscriptions, memberships, cloud storage beyond actual requirements, supplementary insurances that are no longer relevant and so on. Before continuing to pay, confirm whether the continued expense is still required, as circumstances do change. If you no longer need the good or service being supplied, make the necessary arrangements to stop payment and communicate this decision to the supplier.

STEP 2: Compare costs If the expense is justified, shop around for alternative suppliers and assess whether you can obtain better value for money. It’s easy to get caught by the ‘lazy tax’ — the phenomenon of being complacent about checking alternatives or negotiating for a better deal from your long-term supplier and therefore paying a higher price than you need to. Consider approaching your current supplier with evidence of comparative quotes, to see if they can improve their offer. An example of this is in gas supply, where a number of new entrants to the WA market are making price matching common for all suppliers. Once you have determined the best supplier for your situation, review their terms and conditions and explore options with them for extended terms of payment and discounts where applicable.

STEP 3: Recalculate minimum revenue Now that you have reassessed your costs, review the total overheads your business needs to meet on a monthly basis and the minimum revenue required. If the delayed payments from debtors will continue to cause financial stress after your aggressive cost reduction campaign, complete the following steps:

STEP 4: Start supplier negotiation Negotiate with your suppliers about whether extended terms can be offered until your finances are back on track. In some cases, they may be willing to grant softer conditions, such as delayed payments, if approached the right way. This can reduce your monthly overheads while you are experiencing a reduction in available cash.

The higher the gross profit margin, the better, as your business keeps more from each dollar of sales.

STEP 7: Remove or control bad debtors Prepare a ‘black list’ of debtors who have overdue invoices. Place a hold on delivering further orders until the backlog of delayed payments from them is recovered. If certain customers have a history of not paying, or there are warning signs that they are experiencing financial difficulties, put them onto a cash on delivery basis. You or your staff should follow up regularly when payments are late.

Consider approaching your current supplier with evidence of comparative quotes.

STEP 5: Overhaul your terms Review your own terms and conditions or terms of trade. Do they need to be tightened further to shorten the cash cycle and collect sales revenues more quickly? Don’t forget to have a lawyer review these to make sure they are watertight.

STEP 6: Check your profit margins Review the gross profit margins on your sales mix to evaluate whether it’s time to increase prices and improve your margins. Your gross profit is your revenue, minus the cost of goods sold (COGS) and is an indicator of efficiency.

Be careful about extending credit — it is useful to buy a credit history report to assess your customer’s likelihood of falling into financial difficulty.

By following these steps, you will have completed a health check of your overheads and have improved your internal cost efficiency. Even when you are struggling with late payments from your debtors, this process will increase your eventual cash position and ultimately your profits. MORE INFORMATION The Small Business Development Corporation and its Business Local providers in regional WA offer advisory services and financial management workshops to help you run your business. Visit smallbusiness.wa.gov.au or call 133 140 for more information.

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Over the last 120 years, heat has killed more Australians than any natural disaster.

Managing and preventing

s s e r t s t hea BY LUCY KLUCK FAIR FARMS POLICY AND PROJECT OFFICER

A

s summer arrives, the season also brings storms, bushfires, floods, and cyclones. Yet for growers and workers, heat stress presents a more insidious and dangerous hazard each day.

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3 WITH so many industry workers arriving from much cooler climates, it is critically important this summer that you understand the risks of heat stress and how to keep your workers safe.


YOUR BUSINESS

How to manage heat stress When it comes to managing heat stress, prevention is better than a cure. The risk of heat stress is highest during heat waves, high humidity, and when the temperatures are about 5°C or more above average.

3 WEAR lightweight, long-sleeved, cool clothing, sunscreen, hat, and sunglasses.

Over the last 120 years, heat has killed more Australians than any natural disaster. Recently, the risks of heat became apparent when a business owner in North Queensland was fined $65,000 for the death of a backpacker who collapsed from heat stress while picking fruit. With so many industry workers arriving from much cooler climates, it is critically important this summer that you understand the risks of heat stress and how to keep your workers safe.

What is heat stress? Heat stress refers to any heat related illness that arises when the body cannot cool itself properly. Human bodies regulate heat and cool down by sweating however, sweat can be insufficient which causes body temperature to rise. Especially in high humidity such as what we experience in Queensland! Heat stress can manifest in relatively mild conditions such as heat rash or heat cramps. While these conditions can seem more inconvenient than dangerous, they can be an early symptom of heat exhaustion or heat stroke and should be treated seriously. Heat exhaustion happens when excessive sweating in a hot environment reduces blood volume, natural fluid and salt levels. Heavy sweating, paleness, rapid heart rate, muscle cramps, dizziness, headache, nausea and fainting are all warning signs. Heat exhaustion is very dangerous and can develop into heat stroke.

Workers are at higher risk when working in uncovered areas outdoors. To manage the risk of heat stroke, consider including these strategies into your WHS policies and procedures: • Drink plenty of water and avoid sugary drink intake • Wear lightweight, long-sleeved, cool clothing • Provide sunscreen, hats, and sunglasses to workers

If you suspect someone has heat exhaustion: • Move them to a cool, shaded area and lay them down

• Provide workers with wet towels for cooling down

• Remove their outer clothing

• Organise frequent breaks in shaded areas and consider job rotation

• Wet their skin with cool water or wet cloths

• Plan to schedule outdoor work in the cooler parts of the day

• If they are fully conscious, increase their fluid intake

• If indoors, keep air circulating with fans

• Seek medical advice.

• Check in with your workers frequently about how they are feeling

Heat stroke occurs when the body’s core temperature rises above 40.5°C and loses the ability to sweat and cool down. Heat stroke can develop rapidly over 10–15 minutes.

Warning signs include an extremely high body temperature, red, hot, dry skin, a rapid pulse, throbbing headache, dizziness, and nausea.

• Ensure everyone understands the signs and risks of heat stress and how to manage it.

Heat stroke can develop rapidly over 10–15 minutes.

People may stagger, appear confused, have a seizure, or become unconscious as their central nervous systems and organs suffer severe damage. Heat stroke is incredibly dangerous and is fatal in up to 80 per cent of cases. If you suspect someone has heat stroke: • Call triple zero (000) immediately • Try to reduce their body temperature by moving them to a cool, shady area, fanning them continuously and wetting their skin with water

As the frequency and duration of heat waves increases across Australia, it is more important than ever to stay informed and understand how to keep yourself and your workers safe though hot conditions.

MORE INFORMATION Fair Farms is about raising awareness of this and many other practices that look after and keep workers safe and happy. The Fair Farms Standard has been accepted as meeting responsible and ethical supplychain policies. Employers who wish to demonstrate compliance with the Fair Farms Standard can achieve third-party certification with our simpler, cheaper and Australian solution. For more information, visit www.fairfarms.com.au or email us at fairfarms@growcom.com.au

• Do not give them fluids to drink as the airway may be obstructed • If unconscious, lay them on their side. WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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3 KEY issues on the sustainability of WA’s vegetable growing businesses include farm biosecurity, water and nutrition management and food safety/quality assurance management.

VegNET WA Strategy

A roadmap for enhancing WA vegetable growing businesses

Working closely with growers and related stakeholders.

BY VO THE TRUYEN REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT OFFICER, VEGETABLESWA

A

s part of the VegNET Western Australia (WA) five-year strategy, the regional development officers will undertake an innovation broker role of sorts.

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This will allow us to work closely with growers and related stakeholders, to create value by translating innovation into adoptable field practices. ‘Growers First’ is the first pillar of our strategy and we’ve prioritised the way we work side-by-side with our grower members and stakeholders to tackle the big challenges facing the industry.

Identified challenges Through vegetablesWA’s extension program consultations (funded by HAL, HIA and APC VPC including VegNET Phase 1) with WA vegetable growers and relevant stakeholders over the past eight years, the priority of regional issues that have been identified are shown in Table 1.


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TABLE 1. PRIORITY REGIONAL ISSUES Rank

Overall

North

South West

South

1

Labour

Labour

Labour

Labour

2

Market and business management

Farm biosecurity

Market and business management

Market and business management

3

Water and crop nutrition management

Market and business management

Water and crop nutrition management

Water and crop nutrition management

4

Quality Assurance

Quality Assurance

Farm biosecurity

Farm biosecurity Pests and diseases management

Communication 5

Farm biosecurity

Pests and diseases management

Quality Assurance

6

Pests and diseases management

Water and crop nutrition management

Pests and diseases management

7

Communication

Communication

Prioritised focuses

Growers first

By conducting a regional scan and gap analysis, we’ve been able to develop a few select projects.

The regional development team are committed to finding the right solutions for each participating growers’ situation and understanding the specific requirements of their businesses.

This search for relevant R&D, advances in technology and industry information, in support of the WA vegetable industry, provided us with a number of potential innovative solutions to regional issues. As a result, three key issues that are making a profound impact on the sustainability of WA’s vegetable growing businesses were prioritised; they include — farm biosecurity, water and nutrition management and food safety/quality assurance management.

This customer-centric approach doesn’t just extend to how we work with growers, it is also reflected in our broader regional development agenda. Our project actions are designed to enhance innovation system linkages, participatory learning and adoption.

Enhanced Innovation System Linkages:

Contact the VegNET WA Regional Development team at to get more information.

Using this data, three projects have been developed, as part of the five-year strategy, with a clear objective to bring a measure of value to WA growers. The regional scan also found that the Quality Assurance Coordinator and Labour Facilitator projects, run by vegetablesWA, provide a rich source of expertise and industry value. Similarly, the areas of market and business management have been addressed by other projects under the same service provider.

The industry indications from these projects will be incorporated as additional sources of knowledge and information, in the execution of the three prioritised regional projects.

• Increase the connection and participation of growers in regional projects and investments that are relevant to their production system and issues (e.g. research scoping, demonstration sites, technology trials) • Improve the ability of growers/ stakeholders to find information relevant to their production system through strengthening regional networks, including helping find the most appropriate service providers • Enhance knowledge and resources sharing among growers/stakeholders to facilitate innovation and innovation adoption activities.

Five stage process to enhance growers’ decision-making and innovation adoption:

2. Persuasion (the forming of a favourable attitude to them). 3. Decision (commitment to adoption). 4. Implementation (putting innovation into use via trial and error process). 5. Confirmation (reinforcement the adoption decision based on positive outcomes from it).

Promotion and assistance to evolve and adopt to the changing industry environment: • Increase growers’ awareness of challenges and opportunities evolving over time • Increase growers’ awareness of who and where they and their businesses are among others in the industry • Increase growers’ motivation to make changes to adapt themselves and their businesses to evolving production and market environment.

Growers’ ‘can do’ approach All WA levy and fee for service paying growers can take part in the proposed activities within the VegNET WA project. Growers can simply start by contacting the VegNET WA Regional Development team at vegetablesWA to get more information on how to get involved. MORE INFORMATION Truyen Vo, Regional Development Officer, phone (08) 9486 7515, 0457 457 559 or email truyen.vo@vegetableswa.com.au.

1. Knowledge (expose to innovations and understanding the benefits). WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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Code aims to improve the clarity and transparency of trading arrangements.

New dispute resolution service

for disgruntled growers G

BY AMBER ATKINSON COMMUNICATIONS & POLICY OFFICER, VEGETABLESWA

rowers in dispute are being urged to contact the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman. The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman Kate Carnell is encouraging growers and traders in disputes that fall under the Horticulture Code of Conduct to contact her office. “The Horticulture Code is a mandatory code that aims to improve the clarity and transparency of trading arrangements between growers and traders,” Ms Carnell said.

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WA Grower SUMMER 2020

“My office can provide growers and traders with information and assistance with dispute resolution, including access to mediation services and produce assessors. “Mediation is a far more cost-effective and timely way to resolve disputes than taking legal action. “Our website (www.asbfeo.gov. au/assistance/horticulture-code/ produce-assessors) also features a list of horticulture produce assessors who can help resolve a disagreement by investigating and reporting on matters linked to a horticulture produce agreement. “Assessors can address issues such as whether a trader was entitled to reject produce or whether a grower has received the correct payment from the trader. “Once an assessor is involved, all parties have to comply with the assessor’s

3 MEDIATION is a far more cost-effective and timely way to resolve disputes than taking legal action.

reasonable requests and failure to do so can attract a penalty. “At the end of the day we want to keep small businesses out of the courts, where let’s face it, the only winners are lawyers.

“The good news is that the majority of small business disputes my office assists with are resolved at mediation or before. “Since my office opened four years ago, we have provided assistance to over 20,000 small businesses nation-wide. Two-out-of-three of those disputes were successfully resolved at mediation or prior to that through contact with our assistance team. “We want to help small businesses resolve their disputes as quickly as possible so they can get on with what they do best — running their business.”


YOUR BUSINESS

Steps to resolve a dispute under the Horticulture Code of Conduct Step 1: Internal dispute resolution The Code requires you to first try to resolve your dispute with the other party by sending them a notice of dispute (DOCX 20KB) outlining: • the nature of the dispute • what outcome you want • what action will settle the dispute. If you can’t agree on an outcome within three weeks, either party may refer the matter to mediation, which involves an informal negotiation between the parties facilitated by an independent third party.

Step 2: Mediation If the dispute is not resolved through the internal dispute resolution process, the parties may refer the matter to mediation.

Once mediation is requested, it becomes mandatory for both parties to attend and to genuinely try to resolve the dispute.

Appointment of a Horticulture Produce Assessor A Horticulture Produce Assessor (the assessor) may be appointed by the parties at any stage of the dispute process. The Assessor will prepare a report and provide it to the parties to the agreement, and (if applicable) the mediator. MORE INFORMATION Small businesses that need information about the Horticulture Code or help with resolving a dispute that falls under the Code can visit www.asbfeo.gov.au or call the hotline 1300 650 460.

This a cost-effective dispute resolution option for growers and traders under the Code. Appointed mediators help growers and traders to resolve their dispute without going to court.

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Is overseas labour the right move for WA growers?

There are 29 Approved Employers in WA between the SWP and PLS.

PHOTO © VICTORIA BAKER

3 SEVERAL employers have expanded in size due to the stability of their Seasonal Worker Programme workforce.

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YOUR BUSINESS

time for the approval process under the SWP; the accommodation requirements and lack of accommodation in the regional areas; and the uncertainly of using Pacific and Timorese labour.

BY MELISSA DENNING LABOUR SCHEME FACILITATOR

Plans to remove some of these barriers are being considered but others appear to have stalled for various reasons.

M

elissa Denning reports her findings and recommendations after spending 12 months leading the vegetablesWA labour scheme project.

There are 29 Approved Employers (AEs) in WA between the SWP and PLS. 100 per cent of AE’s agree that having Seasonal Workers has led to an improvement in their business. Improvements are varied, from better productivity (see Figure 1) between SWP workers and Working Holidays Makers (WHMs) and between SWPs in their first and second year (see Figure 2).

Since their introduction in Western Australia the Seasonal Worker Programme (SWP) and Pacific Labour Scheme (PLS) have been underutilised.

The Labour Scheme Pilot was established in 2019 and scheduled to run for a 12-month period.

In a bid to rectify this, the Labour Scheme Pilot was established in 2019 and scheduled to run for a 12-month period.

The goal of the pilot was to assist six to 12 employers with accessing the programmes and to determine why there is a resistance to utilising them. The pilot assisted eight employers to apply and recruit workers under both of the schemes and during this process uncovered some of the challenges to employers.

Even if WA cedes to the federal system, the Migration Act still requires AEs to be Pty Ltd companies to be approved to sponsor workers. The Commonwealth Government have been adamant about not changing this requirement. One alternative for the partnership and/ or trust issue is for employers in WA to engage the services of a Labour Hire Company (LHC).

However, two employers have reported dissolving their Deeds due to the increased level of bureaucracy required by the Commonwealth Government.

However, the feedback we have received from WA growers is that they are wary of engaging with LHCs due to the alleged perception for underpaying workers and overcrowding accommodation.

During the Pilot, workshops were conducted in eight locations across WA to more than 70 employers and interested stakeholders.

Messaging about LHCs, under the SWP, has revealed that the level of compliance required is extremely high, while a recent report from Fairwork stated that LHCs in the Wide Bay area of Queensland were 100 per cent compliant.

1,400

$915

2018–19

1,200

$796 $605 $509

PRODUCTIVITY ($)

PRODUCTIVITY ($)

Many employers in the horticultural space in WA operate as partnerships and/or trusts, thus making them ineligible to participate in the schemes and changing to a Proprietary Limited (Pty Ltd) company may have long lasting commercial and legal implications.

Nine LHCs operate in WA with approximately 75 per cent of the total number of SWPs in the State.

Most employers were interested to hear that the schemes would work in their business, however, it soon became apparent that many were ineligible to access the schemes.

These challenges included: the types of business entity; the lack of trust in labour hire companies; the length of

1,000 900 800 700 600 500 400 300 200 100 0

Several employers have expanded in size due to the stability of their SWP workforce, creating more down-stream jobs for Australians and other businesses.

WA has maintained its own Industrial Relations system and has not completely ceded this to the Commonwealth.

2019–20

$1,237

$1,114

1,000 800

$915 $796

600 400 200

SWP1

SWP2

WHM1

WHM2

WORKERS FIGURE 1. 2018 PRODUCTIVITY COMPARISON BETWEEN SWP & WHMS IN $ VALUE

0

SWP1

SWP2

WORKERS FIGURE 2. COMPARISON OF SWP WORKERS OVER TWO YEARS — IMPROVEMENT IN PRODUCTIVITY IN $ VALUE WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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The WA horticulture industry has long called on the State Government to regulate the Labour Hire Industry along similar lines as seen in Queensland, Victoria and South Australia. Definitive regulations would go a long way to creating increased trust in the Labour Hire Industry. The processing time for approval to enter the SWP is also an element that needs to be better streamlined. One prospective employer applied for workers in November 2019, and another employer in March 2020. Both growers have stated that they have not been approved and have had little communication from the Department of Education, Skills and Employment (DESE).

SWP accommodation on their farm, and counter proposed to build a facility in town that is open to all workers. This was a progressive alternative, rather than just an outright no, however the project has since fallen over as the State Government were not forthcoming with funding. Other regional centres also have low rental accommodation availability and AEs often find it difficult to secure accommodation that is suitable under the programmes.

The media reported that one particular Shire refused to allow an AE to build

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An additional recommendation is to provide some surety that the workers will arrive. One AE in WA reported that 20 workers absconded in Sydney before landing in WA, and the AE had paid the return flights but were not able to be reimbursed.

Many of WA’s issues occur Australia-wide, however, there are some specific to the state due to legislation and the geography.

AEs have also mentioned that requirements regularly vary from what is required under the Deed, for example accommodation that has been approved for the previous five years is no longer ‘approved’.

In WA, local governments manage the building approval process and while some local governments are very proactive, others have longer timeframes.

This training needs to be consistent, so employers are certain of what has previously been taught.

A surety fund, sourced from worker superannuation, would reduce these ‘unknown’ issues including absconding and if the worker is simply not productive.

In recent months DESE has advertised for more SWP staff to be based in regional areas, so there is hope that these processes might speed up.

AEs that have been part of the programme for a significant period without compliance issues may be allowed to operate on a trust system, rather than the current micromanaged system.

To alleviate this concern, vegetablesWA recommends that training centres are established to cover basic essential tasks such as using washing machines, shopping, using an ATM etc, prior to arriving in Australia.

vegetablesWA recommends training centres are established to cover basic essential tasks.

Several AEs have reported to vegetablesWA that their Recruitment Plans have sat for weeks without been looked at by DESE, this can impede placements as often they are time sensitive.

Instituting a type of ‘Trusted Trader’ system might free up some of the processing time.

There are slightly more rules and regulations around the SWP and PLS regarding termination, but with a return rate of 80 per cent the majority of workers usually prove productive and employers are satisfied.

WA industry would like to see a longterm approach to this issue, purposebuilt camps in key locations available to any AE, ensuring compliance with the requirements but also the ability to build an SWP community. The uncertainty of employing workers from Pacific or Timor-Leste is an element mainly based on the mind-set of the employers. As pointed out to them, they often employ WHMs unseen, so it can be argued that there is no difference other than the nationality. Often this raises a little smile and agreement.

With some considered effort vegetablesWA believe most of the challenges could be overcome, however, it would require co-operation between the State, Commonwealth and Local Governments. It is expected that the number of SWP and PLS workers increase in the coming years due to an increase in awareness of the programmes, however until most of the challenges are addressed a significant increase is unlikely. MORE INFORMATION Visit vegetablesWA.com.au to read the Final Report in full.


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your

market Your market WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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Blockchain traceability supports

a i l a r t s u A brand BY MANUS STOCKDALE EXPORT DEVELOPMENT PROJECT LEAD, VEGETABLESWA

C

onsumers want to know more about the food they eat, now more than ever, which is why the Australian Government is investing in an advanced blockchain traceability system that will help protect Australia’s clean, green and safe food image — and boost export opportunities for farmers. North Sydney-based FreshChain is leading a pilot traceability project funded by the Australian Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment (DAWE) and supported by the New South Wales Department of Primary Industries (NSW DPI). FreshChain’s blockchain-based system is one of 16 projects to share in $4 million in the first round of the Federal Traceability Grants Program, which is part of the Modernising Agricultural Trade Initiative. Federal Agriculture Minister David Littleproud said FreshChain's endto-end traceability system has broad applications across all food, fibre and agricultural products for authentication, provenance, food safety and consumer engagement.

“This system that ensures food safety, biosecurity and traceability will benefit all participants in the supply chain,” Minister Littleproud said.

An advanced traceability system.

3 THE traceability system has broad applications across all food, fibre and agricultural products for authentication, provenance, food safety and consumer engagement.

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WA Grower SUMMER 2020

“It supports the National Traceability Framework and protects the Australian brand in export markets by preventing food fraud, reducing food waste and maintaining consumer confidence. “It’s important during these challenging times to have a resilient fresh food supply system. “With innovations like this from FreshChain, we can show consumers domestically and internationally greater transparency and real time convenience around the origins and safety of agricultural products.


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“The Australian Government invests in projects like these because modern, accurate, and timely traceability systems help provide even stronger assurances to our trading partners and consumers about the safety and quality of our fantastic produce.” The aim of the pilot project is to enable the adoption of a blockchain-based end-to-end traceability system in the horticultural supply chains in domestic and export sectors. FreshChain is a fully integrated, blockchain enabled, paddock to plate assurance system enabling customers to verify the freshness and provenance of produce they buy. FreshChain uses a unique, encrypted and serialised industry standard GS1 Digital Link QR code that can be applied at item, carton, crate or pallet level. The system is designed to be easy to use, effective and low cost so all growers can participate irrespective of size or current digitisation. FreshChain co-founding director Greg Calvert said there was no minimum to the amount of produce growers needed to commit to the pilot. “It might just be a single export consignment to review the inputs/ outcomes of the system and consumer insights,” Mr Calvert said. “It could alternatively be a domestic focus, but with a first eye to being export ready.

3 ONE of the goals is to reinforce Australia’s reputation as a global provider of safe and fresh food.

Mr Calvert said the pilot had already attracted strong interest from growers across multiple produce commodities but that they were always looking for additional partners.

“Providing end to end traceability unlocks that opportunity.

“One of our goals is to reinforce Australia’s reputation as a global provider of safe and fresh food and assist our farmers to achieve Easy to use, effective premium returns.” The Traceability Grants Program was launched by the Federal Government early in 2020 to support projects that:

and low cost.

• Improve agricultural supply chain traceability systems, including developing and trialling technologies that digitise information flow • Provide an advantage for exporters in overseas markets to assist them in maintaining their competitive edge

“We are seeking partners who see the value in further digitisation in delivering a competitive advantage and future proofing their operations for domestic and export customers,” he said.

MORE INFORMATION Expressions of interest can be made here: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1 FAIpQLSflrFrybvJNe5qhh8mjQ6WsT0_ FbTQ4J073Ka2POGxDgHMnTw/viewform

Go to freshchain.com.au

• Increase opportunities to export Australian commodities.

export fReight

WWW.GO2TIGERS.COM CONTACT JASON RADFORD 0412 107 405 | JASON.RADFORD@GO2TIGERS.COM PERTH INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT

Tigers are the largest perishable freight forwarder in Western Australia with the ability to handle export by air and sea. With a full range of facilities close to Perth Airport Tigers can handle all of your perishable freight requirements including air freight security screening, phytosanitary inspections and certification, fumigation services cold storage facilities.

WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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Export Facilitators Projectupdate A

BY MANUS STOCKDALE EXPORT DEVELOPMENT PROJECT LEAD, VEGETABLESWA

s we approach the end of 2020 we’re all hoping that the new year will see the world returning to some form of ‘normal’. Impact of COVID-19 on WA vegetable exports The export trade has been heavily disrupted by COVID-19 with the biggest impacts coming from freight and logistics, particularly in the air freight section.

The Australian Government’s International Freight Assistance Mechanism has provided some relief, but exporters should be adjusting to the ongoing impact of the pandemic well into next year. The International Air Transport Association is reporting that air travel is unlikely to return to pre-COVID conditions until 2024, so it is important that Australian businesses review their operating models. In a recent Austrade communication with exporters International Freight Co-ordinator General, Michael Byrne, suggested businesses should consider the following: 1. Aggregate and consolidate — While it may seem counterintuitive under

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normal conditions, with COVID-19 still impacting flights, businesses need to work together with other exporters and freight forwarders to consolidate loads. By doing so, businesses may be able to access lower rates for loading, packing, warehousing and transport. 2. Deal in facts — Build an understanding of the realities of the situation. For example, you can’t land very large planes in Hobart (due to restrictions around the capacity of the tarmac, loading equipment etc), so chartering a large plane to Hobart to move Tasmanian produce internationally is not likely. Consider new options for how you could get your goods where they need to go. IFAM is always open to hearing your ideas but be realistic about what can be achieved. 3. Plan — Businesses must do extensive planning now more than ever. With flight numbers down approximately 80 per cent from last year and freight capacity filling up weeks in advance, it is no longer feasible to book freight on the same day you’re intending to ship. Businesses need to be forward planning their freight movements and business operations.

3 WITH COVID-19 still impacting flights, businesses need to work together with other exporters and freight forwarders to consolidate loads.

For example, are there insufficiencies in your supply chain? Can you re-negotiate third-party contracts? Change your packaging? Export by sea rather than air? Use this breathing space to plan for your longterm financial profitability. IFAM is working across all levels of government to provide information on support options to help businesses modify supply chains and explore other freight solutions. For more information on business support options from the Australian Government, visit business.gov.au.

Air travel is unlikely to return to pre-COVID conditions until 2024.

4. Adjust and evolve — Use this time to adjust, look at the structure of your business, your product and your supply chains.

Vegetable export trade update January to September 2020 Australia’s vegetable exports have seen a moderate decline over the period from January to September 2020 (see Table 1).


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Demand in Singapore remains strong for Australian fresh vegetables.

TABLE 1. CHANGE IN VEGETABLE EXPORTS BY DESTINATION MARKET JANUARY TO SEPTEMBER 2019–20 2019 Trade partner

2020

AUD

Volume (t)

212,146,514

Singapore

▲ 19–20

Value (AUD)

Volume (t)

193,432

198,799,711

175,036

-6.3%

36,572,223

21,524

38,988,760

22,053

6.6%

2.5%

United Arab Emirates

24,293,426

33,122

24,989,845

26,623

2.9%

-19.6%

Malaysia

19,662,164

19,003

20,451,334

18,838

4.0%

-0.9%

Hong Kong

14,304,049

7,973

14,347,687

7,802

0.3%

-2.1%

Saudi Arabia

15,616,373

16,211

13,183,646

14,621

-15.6%

-9.8%

8,979,469

9,574

9,505,615

9,494

5.9%

-0.8%

13,571,924

13,202

9,441,539

9,999

-30.4%

-24.3%

8,625,982

5,354

8,972,737

2,733

4.0%

-49.0%

11,093,020

17,204

8,782,722

13,340

-20.8%

-22.5%

Taiwan

7,422,200

7,184

6,887,836

8,037

-7.2%

11.9%

New Zealand

9,945,232

2,500

6,648,072

1,445

-33.2%

-42.2%

World

Qatar Thailand Japan Korea, South

Value (AUD)

Volume (t) -9.5%

Source: Global Trade Atlas

Based on data from the Global Trade Atlas, there was a 6.3 per cent decrease in total vegetable export value, down from $212.1 million to $198.8 million.

Vegetable export volumes also declined by 9.5 per cent, from 193,432 tonnes to 175,036 tonnes over the same period. The top four markets for fresh vegetable exports — Singapore, The United Arab Emirates (UAE), Malaysia and Hong Kong — have all seen an increase in trade value during 2020.

Demand in Singapore remained strong for Australian fresh vegetables and is the only trading partner that recorded a positive increase in both export value and volume in this period. Export value increased by 6.6 per cent from January to September 2020, from $36.6 million to $38.9 million; export volume improved by 2.5 per cent from 21,524 tonnes to 22,053 tonnes. The UAE saw growth of 2.9 per cent in value but a significant decline in volume of 19.6 per cent.

Malaysia recorded a 4.0 per cent rise in export value and a slight dip of 0.9 per cent in tonnage. Thailand and South Korea have seen a decline in trade with an average drop of 27.3 per cent in both value and volume for Thailand and an average drop of 21.6 per cent in South Korea.

WA fresh vegetable exports by crop Over the first three quarters of 2020, sea freighted vegetables have performed better than exports of more perishable crops (see Table 2). WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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TABLE 2. WESTERN AUSTRALIAN VEGETABLE EXPORTS BY CROP JANUARY TO SEPTEMBER 2019–20 2019

2020

▲ 19–20

Product

Value (AUD)

Volume (t)

Value (AUD)

Volume (t)

Carrots

60,946,991

71,468

62,168,684

70,938

2%

-1%

Potatoes

9,146,871

6,227

8,493,435

6,924

-7%

11%

Onions

9,029,624

10,570

5,873,912

7,180

-35%

-32%

Celery

2,554,869

1,978

3,023,773

2,306

18%

17%

Brassicas

1,926,243

1,103

1,883,218

763

-2%

-31%

Pumpkins

960,325

727

892,459

829

-7%

14%

840,370

348

714,730

290

-15%

-17%

1,487,888

608

895,549

366

-40%

-40%

Lettuce Other vegetables

Value (AUD)

Volume (t)

* Vegetable Export Trade Update Jan-Sep 2020 reproduced with permission from AUSVEG. Data from Global Trade Atlas

Source: Global Trade Atlas

Volumes of carrots remained relatively stable with carrot export value increasing by 2 per cent from $60.9 million for the same period in 2019 to $62.2 million. The volume and value of onion exports from WA fell significantly compared to 2019 however this is most likely related to global supply and therefore prices returning to more normal levels rather than an impact of COVID-19 in 2020.

There was a worldwide shortage of onions in 2019 which drove up onion exports from WA and pushed prices significantly higher compared to those in 2018. The volume of brassica crops exported from WA was down by more than 30 per cent, which is likely to have been caused by a combination of increased domestic demand, particularly from eastern Australia, and reduced air freight exports of these products.

over Sold nits u 2500 wide d Worl

MORE INFORMATION For more information on any of the activities in the article or to discuss export opportunities please contact Manus Stockdale on 0448 897 652 or email manus.stockdale@vegetableswa.com.au

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minibagger RPC auto filler

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email: sales@edp.com.au


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Electrical, water and automation solutions specialists STATE OF THE art packing facility Northern Valley Packers continues to innovate and refine its process in collaboration with BON, further enhancing its productivity and competitive position. When Northern Valley Packers was established in 2017, the facility was built with a commitment to innovation and excellence. This included some of the most advanced sorting software and automation equipment. Three years on, Northern Valley Packers continue to seek ways to refine their operation, maximising their efficiency and competitive offering to West Australian growers.

With a clear understanding of the pain point the manual process was creating, BON Technical Director, Ben Bonomi, set about designing a concept that would allow for a centralised automated updating system. “We have been fortunate to have a long-term relationship with Northern Valley Packers and the Kay family. This

Working with BON’s software development partners, BON was able to create a user-friendly program that could easily capture and distribute the information from the pack line control box to a screen at a pack station. This included a picture of the required carton/crate, making it easier for the packers to identify what carton or crate they needed to be packing into. Whilst working through the software development, BON set about installing the screens and associated control cabling at each packing station. The installation was coordinated around Northern Valley Packers schedule as the line could not be halted to allow for installation works to take place. “Our team worked weekends and evening shifts to ensure we did not disrupt the packing schedule,” said Ben.

Working closely with electrical, water and automation solutions specialists, BON, Northern Valley Packers recently implemented a centralised information distribution system streamlining the updating of sizing and grading information displayed at each packing station. Prior to the implementation of a central distribution portal, each packing station was updated with size and grading information manually. This involved the floor Operations Manager manually writing on an individual white board at each of the 26 packing stations. Depending on the packing schedule, each station could require multiple updates throughout the course of a day. Northern Valley Packers, Operations Manager, Michael Kay, said the manual updating of information at every drop point was a time-consuming task and allowed room for errors. “Anything that improves efficiency and productivity helps Northern Valley Packers provide a competitive service for all its clients and enables us to compete strongly in the markets we supply our citrus to,” Michael said.

individualised to fill a specific order, allowing each packing station to work to a different packing order at any given time.”

Since completing the project, Michael has reported a significant improvement in productivity as a result of the new screens and software. “With regular product changes throughout the day, the ability to change the information at each screen on every drop point, and from the control station, has been a huge time saving and increased productivity,” said Michael.

has evolved from many years of providing ongoing support,” said Ben. “I could see how the manual updating of the white boards was arduous and thought this could be improved.” “The first step in our process was to determine exactly what information needed to be conveyed at the packing station. The data on each screen was

“Information on the screens included fruit variety, class, size (in either count or millimetres) and required package type. Accuracy in all these factors was really important for data integrity further along the packing process,” he said. “Working collaboratively with BON during the setup stage made commissioning and introducing the new process trouble free.” WA Grower SUMMER 2020

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ROADMAP FOR ENHANCING WA VEGETABLE GROWING BUSINESSES — VIETNAMESE TRANSLATION

Chiến lược dự án VegNET WA Lộ trình tăng cường năng lực ngành trồng rau cải Tây Úc

Cùng làm việc gần gủi với nông gia và các thành phần liên quan.

VÕ THẾ TRUYỀN CHUYÊN VIÊN KHUYẾN NÔNG VIỆT NAM, HIỆP HỘI RAU CẢI TÂY ÚC

Trong chiến lược 5 năm của dự án VegNET WA, các chuyên viên phát triển vùng sẽ đóng vai trò như những người trung gian thúc đẩy các tiến bộ kỹ thuật. Vai trò này sẽ cho phép chúng tôi làm việc chặc chẽ với nông gia và các đối tác trong ngành để tạo ra giá trị bằng cách chuyển các tiến bộ kỹ thuật thành các biện pháp canh tác thích hợp.

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WA Grower SUMMER 2020

“Nông gia trên hết” là tiêu chí đầu tiên trong chiến lược của chúng tôi và chúng tôi ưu tiên làm việc bên cạnh nông gia hội viên và các đối tác trong ngành để giải quyết các thách thức mà ngành rau cải đang phải đối mặt.

Xác định thách thức Thông qua các chương trình tư vấn khuyến nông của Hiêp hội Rau cải Tây

úc (do HAL, HIA, và APC-VPC tài trợ, bao gồm cả dự án VegNET giai đoạn I) với nông gia và các đối tác trong ngành trong tám năm qua chúng tôi đã xác định các thách thức và các vấn đề ưu tiên của từng vùng như trình bày trong Bảng 1.


YOUR INDUSTRY

BẢNG 1: Các vấn đề ưu tiên ở từng vùng. Xếp hạng

Vấn đề chung

Khu vực phía Bắc

Khu vực Tây Nam

Khu vực phía Nam

1

Nhân công

Nhân công

Nhân công

Nhân công

2

Thị trường và quản trị doanh nghiệp

An ninh sinh học

Thị trường và quản trị doanh nghiệp

Thị trường và quản trị doanh nghiệp

3

Quản lý tưới tiêu và dinh dưởng cây trồng

Thị trường và quản trị doanh nghiệp

Quản lý tưới tiêu và dinh dưởng cây trồng

Quản lý tưới tiêu và dinh dưởng cây trồng

4

Bảm đảm chất lượng

Bảm đảm chất lượng Thông tin liên lạc

An ninh sinh học

An ninh sinh học

5

An ninh sinh học

Quản lý sâu bệnh

Bảm đảm chất lượng

Quản lý sâu bệnh

6

Quản lý sâu bệnh

Quản lý tưới tiêu và dinh dưởng cây trồng

Quản lý sâu bệnh

7

Thông tin liên lạc

Các vấn đề trọng tâm Bằng cách rà soát các tài liệu và phân tích nhu cầu của ngành, chúng tôi đã xây dưng một số dự án cải thiện. Công việc rà soát tài liệu các dự án nghiên cứu phát triển, tiến bộ kỹ thuật và thông tin bổ xung trong ngành rau cải Tây úc đã cung cấp cho chúng tôi một số tiến bộ kỹ thuật khả thi và có triển vọng để giải quyết các vấn đề tại các khu vực. Từ kết quả trên có 3 vấn đề được ghi nhận đang tác động rất lớn đến sự bền vững của ngành rau cải Tây úc được xếp ưu tiên gải quyết. Các vấn đề đó là: An ninh sinh học trang trại, Quản lý nước và dinh dưỡng cây trồng và quản lý chất lượng sản phẩm. Dựa vào các dử liệu trên chúng tôi đã xây dựng 3 dự án với các mục tiêu rỏ ràng nhằm mang lại sự tăng cường các giá trị mà nông gia Tây úc đã đóng góp như là một phần của chiến lược khuyến nông 5 năm. Công tác rà soát cũng tìm thấy rằng các dự án về bảo đảm chất lượng sản phẩm và cố vấn lao động đang vận hành tại Hiệp hội Rau cải Tây úc cũng cung cấp nguồn lực về chuyên môn và giá trị đáng kể cho ngành. Tương tự, các lảnh vực quản trị doang nghiệp và phát triển thị trường cũng đang được Hiệp hội thực hiện. Kết quả của các dự án này cũng sẽ được liên thông vào 3 dự án kể trên như và các nguồn bổ xung kiến thức, thông tin trong quá trình thực hiện dự án.

Nguyên tắt “Nông gia trên hết” Nhóm công tác phát triển vùng đã cam kết tìm ra các giải pháp phù hợp cho hoàn cảnh cũng như các yêu cầu riêng của từng nông gia tham gia dự án. Cách tiếp cận theo kiểu đặt nông gia làm trung tâm này không chỉ mở ra thêm phương cách làm việc với nông gia mà

Thông tin liên lạc

còn phản ảnh chương trình nghị sự bao quát hơn về phát triển vùng. Các hoạt động trong dự án được thiết kế để tăng cường các mối liên kết trong hệ thống thúc đẩy tiến bộ kỹ thuật và phương thức học tập và tiếp thu chủ động

• Xác nhận (cũng cố quyết định ứng dụng tiến bộ kỹ thuật dựa vào kết quả khả quan đã đạt được) • Thúc đẩy và hổ trợ nông gia tham gia dự án và ứng dụng tiến bộ kỹ thuật trong môi trường sản xuất kinh doanh liên tục diển biến

Tăng cường các mối liên kết trong hệ • Gia tăng sự cảnh giác của nông gia thống thúc đẩy tiến bộ kỹ thuật: đến các thách thức và cơ hội liên tục diển biến. • Gia tăng sự kết nối và tham gia của nông gia trong vùng dự án và các • Gia tăng sự cảnh giác của nông gia nguồn đâu tư phù hợp với đến thực lực, vị trí mà họ và doanh các hệ thống canh tác nghiệp của họ đang đứng trong cà các vấn đề tương ứng Để biết thêm chi tiết, số các doanh nghiệp khác (các mô hình thj phạm, trong ngành xin vui lòng liên hệ các thử nghiệm trên đồng với nhóm chuyên viên • Gia tăng động lực của ruộng) nông gia tiến hành các thay phát triển vùng của • Cải thiện khả năng của đổi đê thích nghi vào môi VegNET WA nông gia/các thành phần trường sản xuất kinh doanh liên quan để tìm kiếm thông liên tục diển biến tin phù hợp với phương cách canh tác thông qua việc tăng cường “Những việc làm ngay được” của các mạng lưới liên kết vùng bao gồm cả việc giúp họ tìm được các nhà cung nông gia cấp dịch vụ tốt nhất Tất cả nông gia có đóg góp lệ phí ngành • Tăng cường sự chia sẽ kiến thức giửa và phí dịch vụ đều có thể tham gia các nông gia và các thành phần liên quan hoạt động trong các dự án nêu trên. để thúc đẩy các hoạt động ứng dụng Nông gia cứ đơn giản bắt đầu tham gia tiến bộ kỹ thuậ. bằng cách liên hệ các chuyên viên phát triển vùng tại Hiệp hội Rau cải Tây Úc để Tiến trình 5 bước ứng dụng tiến bộ kỹ có them thông tin dự án và cách thức thuật: tham gia. • Tiếp cận kiến thức (Tiếp cận thông tin tiến bộ kỹ thuật và am hiểu các lợi ích THÊM THÔNG TIN của chúng) Võ Thế Truyền, Chuyên • Thuyết phục (Hình thành suy nghĩ tích viên phát triển vùng, cực về tiến bộ kỹ thuật) (08) 9486 7515, Di động 0457 457 559, truyen.vo@vegetableswa.com.au • Quyết định (Cam kết ứng dụng tiến bộ kỹ thuật) • Thực hiện (Đưa các tiến bộ kỹ thuật vào thực hành)

WA Grower SUMMER 2020

115


YOUR PRODUCTION Permits

Permits

Current Minor Use Permits can also be searched by specific crop or pest types at https://portal.apvma.gov.au/permits Permit no.

Type

Product

Crop

Reason for use

Expiry date

PER14726

AG

Raptor WG Herbicide

Adzuki and faba beans

Grass and broadleaf weed control

30-Sep-24

PER13607

AG

Spinnaker Herbicide

Adzuki bean

Weeds

30-Sep-23

PER14936

AG

Haloxyfop

Adzuki bean

Grass weeds

30-Jun-24

PER82124

AG

Filan

Adzuki bean

Sclerotinia

31-Mar-22

PER14496

AG

Metolachlor

Adzuki beans & mung beans

Certain annual grasses & broadleaf weeds

31-Mar-24

PER12716

AG

Confidor 200 SC Insecticide

Asian root vegetables

Greenhouse whitefly and Green peach aphid

31-Jul-25

PER86530

AG

Status Herbicide

Beans

Annual rye grass & winter grass

31-Aug-21

PER81260

AG

Imidacloprid

Beetroot

Aphids & thrips

31-Jul-25

PER14891

AG

Trifloxystrobin

Beetroot

Alternaria leaf spot

30-Sep-29

PER82461

AG

FOLICUR 430 SC Fungicide

Beetroot, Beetroot leaves, chicory, endive, radish, silverbeet

Sclerotinia rot

31-Aug-25

PER87630

AG

Serenade Opti Biofungicide

Brassica leafy vegetables

Bacterial spot

30-Jun-22

PER14584

AG

Imidacloprid

Brassica leafy vegetables

Aphids, whitefly and thrips

31-Jan-24

PER87670

AG

XENTARI WG BtA Biological Insecticide

Brassica leafy vegetables

Diamond back moth, cabbage white butterfly, helicoverpa & vegetable looper

31-Jul-24

PER14907

AG

Emamectin

Brassica leafy vegetables

Various pests

30-Nov-24

PER10845

AG

Barmac Zineb Fungicide

Brassica leafy vegetables

Cercospora leaf spot & downy mildew

31-May-25

PER14127

AG

Pendimethalin

Brassica leafy vegetables & Rocket

Weeds

31-Aug-23

PER14045

AG

Mancozeb + Metalaxyl

Brassica leafy vegetables, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, chicory, endive, radicchio, rocket, carrots and parsnip

Various fungal diseases

31-Mar-22

PER87773

AG

Devrinol-C 500WG Herbicide

Brassica vegetables

Broadleaf and grass control

31-Aug-22

PER14596

AG

Chlorpyrifos

Brassica vegetables

Vegetable beetle adults

30-Sep-29

PER81876

AG

ABAMECTIN

Brassica vegetables, bulb Leaf miner vegetables, fruiting vegetables

30-Apr-24

PER81867

AG

DIPTEX 150 WP

Brassica vegetables, fruiting vegetables

Leaf miner

30-Nov-23

PER14352

AG

Metalaxyl-M (Apron XL 350) and Fludioxonil (Maxim 100)

Broccoli (seed treatment)

Damping-off and rhizoctonia

31-Jan-24

PER14051

AG

Iprodione

Broccoli seed treatment

Rhizoctinia

31-Mar-23

PER84261

AG

Admiral Insect Growth Regulator (pyriproxyfen)

Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage and cauliflower

Silverleaf whitefly

31-Aug-25

PER14432

AG

Pendimethalin

Brussels sprouts

Grasses and broadleaf weeds

30-Jun-24

PER80910

AG

Iprodione

Brussels sprouts & eggplant

Grey mould

31-Jul-25

PER11951

AG

Phosphorous acid

Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, silverbeet, endive, radicchio, chicory & processing peas

Downy mildew

31-Mar-25

PER87200

AG

Starane Advanced Herbicide

Bulb onions

Weeds

31-Aug-24

PER80060

AG

Frontier-P

Bulb onions

Weeds

31-Jul-21

116

WA Grower SUMMER 2020


YOUR PRODUCTION

Permit no.

Type

Product

Crop

Reason for use

Expiry date

PER89185

AG

Mainman 500 WG Insecticide

Bulb vegetable

Thrips

31-Aug-23

PER82039

AG

BIFENTHRIN

Cabbage, Chinese cabbage and cauliflower

Symphyla

30-Sep-23

PER81408

AG

Phosphorous acid

Capsicum

Phytophthora soil fungus

31-Jul-25

PER12565

AG

Scala Fungicide

Capsicum and lettuce (protected crops only)

Botrytis rots

30-Jun-25

PER13901

AG

Glyphosate (shielded sprayer)

Capsicums, snow peas, sugar snap peas

Annual and perennial grass and broadleaf weeds

30-Jun-24

PER87852

AG

Versys Insecticide

Capsicums, cucumber, eggplant

Aphids

31-May-23

PER13795

AG

Agpro Propazine 500

Carrot crops

Nightshade, fat Hen & wireweed

31-Mar-23

PER11747

AG

2,2-Dichloropropionic Acid

Carrot crops (for seed)

Promotion of bolting and grass weed control

2-Dec-22

PER85291

AG

Prosulfocarb

Carrot for seed production only

Annual ryegrass

31-Mar-23

PER85402

AG

Flumioxazin

Carrot for seed production only

Cleavers

30-Jun-23

PER85232

AG

Tau-fluvalinate

Carrot for seed production only

Rutherglen bug

30-Sep-23

PER89181

AG

Sumagic Uniconazole

Carrot seed crops

Plant height reduction

31-Oct-23

PER10918

AG

Imidacloprid

Carrot, leafy lettuce, silverbeet Greenhouse whitefly and aphids & spinach

PER13778

AG

Various herbicides, Carrot, onion & brassica seed insecticides & fungicides crops

PER86665

AG

Fipronil

Carrots

White fringed weevil and symphylids

31-Jan-22

PER13305

AG

Glyphosate (shielded sprayer)

Carrots

Certain broadleaf and grass weeds

30-Jun-22

PER80169

AG

Metribuzin

Carrots

Grass and broadleaf weeds

30-Apr-24

PER13147

AG

Lontrel

Cauliflower

Capeweed and clover

30-Sep-24

PER86599

AG

Bifenthrin

Celery

Red-legged earthmite

31-Dec-23

PER14843

AG

Indoxacarb (Avatar Insecticide)

Celery

Heliothis, lightbrown apple moth, lucerne leaf roller and vegetable weevil

30-Sep-24

PER86428

AG

Serenade Opti

Cucumber

Bacterial spot

30-Jun-21

PER14722

AG

Abamectin

Cucumber, zucchini, squash

Tomato red spider mite

31-Jul-25

PER14046

AG

Mancozeb

Cucumbers

Grey mould

31-Mar-23

PER14765

AG

Hexythiazox (Calibre 100 EC miticide)

Cucurbit vegetables, fruiting vegetables, potatoes, snow and sugar snap peas

Tomato spider mite, two-spotted mite, broad mite, tomato russet mite

30-Sep-23

PER88032

AG

Serenade Opti Biofungicide

Eggplant

Early blight, botrytis grey mould, powdery mildew, bacterial spot

31-Oct-22

PER14186

AG

Success Neo (spinetoram)

Eggplant

Melon thrips

30-Sep-21

PER12506

AG

Dimethoate

Eggplant

Queensland fruit fly & Mediterranean fruit fly

31-Aug-23

PER8930

AG

Phorate

Eggplant, peppers, shallots and spring onions

Aphids, jassids, mites, thrips and onion maggot

30-Nov-24

PER14839

AG

Zineb

Eggplant, spinach & silverbeet Anthracnose (Colletotrichum spp.)

30-Sep-24

PER80717

AG

Trichlorfon

Eggplant, Thai eggplant, pepino & Cape gooseberry

Fruit fly

31-Aug-25

PER85363

AG

FulFill Insecticide

Faba beans

Green peach aphid and faba bean aphid

31-Aug-21

PER86849

AG

Imazamox, Imazapyr

Faba beans

Annual broadleaf and grass weeds

30-Apr-22

PER13752

AG

Tebuconazole

Faba beans & broad beans

Cercospora leaf spot & rust

30-Jun-24

31-Dec-23 30-Jun-23

WA Grower SUMMER 2020

117


YOUR PRODUCTION

permits (cont.) Permit no.

Type

Product

Crop

Reason for use

Expiry date

PER84757

AG

Spinetoram

Fruiting vegetables other than cucurbits & root and tuber vegetables

Tomato potato psyllid

31-Aug-25

PER80101

AG

Sumitomo Samurai Systematic Insecticide

Fruiting vegetables, cucurbits

Cucumber fruit fly

30-Sep-23

PER80099

AG

Alpha-Cypermethrin

Fruiting vegetables, except cucurbits

Mediterranean fruit fly and Queensland fruit fly

31-Mar-25

PER80100

AG

Sumitomo Samurai Systematic Insecticide

Fruiting vegetables, excluding cucurbits

Mediterranean fruit fly & Queensland fruit fly

30-Sep-23

PER14959

AG

Haloxyfop

Leafy (salad) vegetables, mizuina, green elk

Storksbill

30-Nov-24

PER12351

AG

Imidacloprid

Leafy lettuce, okra, green beans

Silverleaf whitefly

30-Apr-25

PER14906

AG

Triadimenol

Leek, chives, shallot, spring and Chinese onions

White Rot (Sclerotium)

31-Oct-24

PER13367

AG

Linuron

Leeks & celeriac

Grass and broadleaf weeds

30-Apr-25

PER81271

AG

Various Actives

Leeks & garlic

Grass & broadleaf weeds

30-Sep-25

PER14473

AG

Dimethomorph & Mancozeb

Leeks, spring onions and shallots

Downy mildew, purple blotch & botrytis rots

30-Jun-23

PER14210

AG

Acramite Miticide

Lettuce

Two-spotted (red spider) mite

30-Sep-21

PER13301

AG

Alpha-cypermethrin

Lettuce

Red-legged earth mite & vegetable weevil

31-May-25

PER14964

AG

Chlorothalonil

Lettuce seedlings

Antracnose (shot hole)

30-Nov-22

PER81241

AG

Phenmedipham (Betanal)

Lettuce, chicory, endive, radicchio & spinach

Broadleaf weeds

31-May-25

PER14650

AG

Paramite (etoxazole)

Melons

Two-spotted mite

28-Feb-23

PER87065

AG

Dimethoate

Melons including watermelons Various fruit fly species (post-harvest)

28-Feb-24

PER89331

AG

Success Neo Insecticide

Onion

Fall armyworm

31-Mar-23

PER14602

AG

Boscalid, Iprodione & Chlorothalonil

Onion (bulb & seed)

Botrytis neck-rot

30-Sep-23

PER87914

AG

Nufarm Maya Herbicide

Onions

Broadleaf weeds

31-May-21

PER86865

AG

ioxynil

Onions

Annual broadleaf weeds

31-Aug-21

PER13119

AG

Diazinon

Onions

Onion thrips

31-May-23

PER84734

AG

Verdict (haloxyfop)

Onions

Storksbill

31-Dec-24

PER80282

AG

Alpha-Cypermethrin

Onions

Onion thrips

30-Nov-25

PER86551

AG

Pyrethrins

Organic green beans

Bean podborer

30-Apr-24

PER14858

AG

Pendimethalin

Parsnip

Grasses and broadleaf weeds

31-Mar-25

PER12048

AG

Prometryn

Parsnip & carrot

Weeds

31-Jul-25

PER14695

AG

Ridomil Gold 25G (metalaxyl-M)

Parsnips

Pythium Spp. and Phytophthora Spp.

30-Jun-24

PER12357

AG

Linuron

Parsnips

Weeds

31-Jul-25

PER14047

AG

Methidathion

Peppers and eggplant

Rutherglen bug

4-Feb-21

PER11127

AG

Nufarm Filan Fungicide

Peppers celery

Sclerotinia rot

30-Jun-23

PER84245

AG

Movento 240 SC

Potato, sweet potato, tomato, capsicum, chilli, peppers, eggplant

Tomato potato psyllid

30-Apr-25

PER14694

AG

VectoBac WG Biological Larvicide

Protected cropping — capsicum, cucumber, eggplant, herbs, & lettuce

PER80210

AG

Pyrimethanil

Protected tomatoes

Botrytis

30-Jun-23

PER11949

AG

Lambda-Cyhalothrin

Radish & beetroot

Various insects

31-Mar-25

PER11441

AG

Propachlor

Radish, swede, turnip

Grass and broadleaf weeds

31-Oct-24

PER86805

AG

Phosphorous Acid

Rhubarb

Downy mildew

31-Jan-24

PER12384

AG

S-metolachlor (Dual Gold Herbicide)

Rhubarb

Various weeds

30-Jun-25

118

WA Grower SUMMER 2020

30-Jun-24


YOUR PRODUCTION

Permit no.

Type

Product

Crop

Reason for use

Expiry date

PER14471

AG

Lambda-cyhalothrin

Shallots & spring onions

Various pests

31-May-24

PER89645

AG

Afalon Herbicide

Shallots and spring onions

Annual weeds as per Afalon label

30-Jun-22

PER10988

AG

cyanazine

Snow & sugar snap peas

Weeds as per label

31-Mar-25

PER11764

AG

Spiroxamine

Snow peas & sugar snap peas

Powdery mildew

31-Dec-21

PER14033

AG

Lambda-cyhalothrin

Snow peas and sugar snap peas

Pasture webworm, cutworm, Rutherglen bug and thrips

31-May-23

PER14505

AG

Pyrimethanil

Snow peas and sugar snap peas

Grey mould (botrytis)

30-Jun-24

PER10938

AG

Imidacloprid

Snow peas and sugar snap peas

Greenhouse whitefly and green peach aphid

31-Jan-25

PER10976

AG

Bentazone

Snow peas and sugar snap peas

Broadleaf weeds

31-Mar-25

PER87878

AG

Delegate Insecticide

Snow peas and sugar snap peas

Liriomyza leaf miners

28-Feb-23

PER14593

AG

Mancozeb

Specified fruiting and legume vegetables

Downy mildew, anthracnose (Colletotrichum spp) & alternaria

30-Apr-25

PER81244

AG

Fluazifop-p-butyl

Specified vegetables & herbs

Annual grass weeds

30-Jun-22

PER14703

AG

Tramat 500 SC Selective Spinach (Spinacia oleracea Herbicide (ethofumesate) only) & silverbeet

Various weeds

31-Jul-24

PER87631

AG

Coragen Insecticide

Spinach & silverbeet

Cabbage leaf miner

30-Jun-24

PER83765

AG

MAXIM XL

Spinach and silverbeet

Damping off

31-Jul-25

PER14842

AG

Copper Oxychloride, Cuprous Oxide or Cupric Hydroxide

Spring onions and shallots

Downy mildew

30-Sep-24

PER14890

AG

Methomyl (Lannate-L)

Spring onions and shallots

Western flower thrips

31-Oct-24

PER14142

AG

Ioxynil

Spring onions, shallots & Welsh onions

Broadleaf and grass weeds

30-Sep-25

PER14337

AG

Trifluralin

Swedes and turnips

Weeds

30-Jun-25

PER89705

AG

Indoxacarb

Sweet corn

Fall armyworm

31-Dec-20

PER90374

AG

Avatar eVo Insecticide (Indoxacarb)

Sweet corn

Fall armyworm

30-Nov-23

PER86245

AG

Veritas Fungicide

Sweet corn

Maize rust

31-Dec-23

PER84531

AG

Methoxyfenozide

Sweet corn

Lepidopteran pests

31-Aug-25

PER86443

AG

Pirimicarb

Sweet potato, spring onion

Various aphids

30-Jun-23

PER88277

AG

Huwasan TR50

Tomato

Agrobacterium

30-Nov-21

PER86815

AG

Versys

Tomato

Silverleaf whitefly

31-Dec-21

PER87208

AG

Torque

Tomato

Two-spotted mite

30-Apr-22

PER88484

AG

Nimrod

Tomato

Powdery mildew

30-Jun-22

PER89419

AG

Miravis

Tomato

Powdery mildew

30-Sep-23

PER87185

AG

Benevia Insecticide

Tomato

Suckling pests

31-Jul-24

PER87619

AG

Entrust SC Naturalyte

Tomato

Various thrips

31-Aug-24

PER85076

AG

Peratec Plus Fungicide

Tomato

Fusarium wilt

28-Feb-25

PER81713

AG

Mainman 500WG Insecticide

Tomato

Silverleaf whitefly

31-Mar-25

PER80219

AG

Apollo Miticide (clofentezine)

Tomatoes (protected)

Two-spotted mite

30-Apr-24

PER89870

AG

Entrust Organic Insecticide

Various

Fall armyworm

31-Jul-23

PER89358

AG

Trojan Insecticide

Various crops

Fall armyworm

1-May-21

PER89398

AG

Magnet insect attractant technology

Various crops

Fall armyworm

30-Jun-22

PER89279

AG

Various products

Various crops

Fall armyworm

31-Mar-23

PER89278

AG

Avatar Insecticide

Various crops

Fall armyworm

31-Mar-23

PER89263

AG

Proclaim Opti Insecticide Various crops

Fall armyworm

31-Mar-23

PER89259

AG

Altacor Insecticide

Fall armyworm

31-Mar-23

Various Crops

WA Grower SUMMER 2020

119


YOUR PRODUCTION

permits (cont.) Permit no.

Type

Product

Crop

Reason for use

Expiry date

PER89241

AG

Success Neo and Delegate Insecticide

Various crops

Fall armyworm

31-Mar-23

PER89293

AG

Lannate Insecticide

Various crops as per label

Fall armyworm

30-Apr-23

PER89285

AG

Proclaim Opti Insecticide Various leafy vegetables, celery, blueberry

Fall armyworm

31-Mar-23

PER87051

AG

Durivo Insecticide

Various vegetables

Various pests

28-Feb-24

PER13695

AG

Ecocarb Fungicide

Various vegetables

Powdery mildew

31-Jul-25

PER82895

AG

Chlorothalonil

Various vegetables and herbs

Fungal diseases

31-Aug-25

PER87918

AG

Pestech Py-Bo

Zucchini

Ants, aphids, caterpillars, earwigs, Leafhoppers, thrips and whitefly

30-Apr-22

PER87563

AG

Warlock Insecticide

Brassica vegetables

Liriomyza leaf miners

30-Jun-24

PER89280

AG

Durivo Insecticide

Brassicas, leafy vegetables

Fall armyworm

31-Mar-23

PER88430

AG

Versys Insecticide

Carrots

Aphids including green peach aphid and carrot aphid

31-Jul-23

PER88066

AG

Emamectin

Celery

Helicoverpa, lightbrown apple moth & cluster caterpillar

31-Aug-24

PER12489

AG

Imidacloprid

Celery, cucumber, peppers & Cape gooseberry

Aphids, whitefly, thrips

31-May-25

PER80954

AG

Methoxyfenozide

Snow peas and sugar snap peas

Native budworm, tomato grub and cluster caterpillar

31-Jul-25

PER88878

AG

Steward EC Insecticide

Soya and mung beans

Swarming leaf beetles

31-Dec-20

PER88179

AG

Propargite

Sweet corn

Two-spotted mite

31-Dec-22

PER87276

AG

Applaud

Tomatoes

Bemisia tabaci and Trialeurodes vaporariorum

30-Jun-21

PER89353

AG

Chlorantraniliprole

Various crops

Fall armyworm

31-May-23

WA Grower advertiser contacts Name

Website/Email

Bon Electrics (pOBC)

www.bon-electrics.com.au Lot 4, Bullsbrook Road, Bullsbrook WA 6084

DELTAwater Solutions (p41) www.deltawater.com.au

Address

Contact name

Contact no.

Kaela Bonomi

N/A

Dianne Panov

(02) 4960 9555

Department of Premier and wa.gov.au/workandwander Cabinet (p21)

120

edp australia pty ltd (p112)

www.edp.com.au

31–35 O'Brien Street, Mooroopna VIC 3629

Ian Parsons

(03) 5820 5337

Frig Tech (Effective Marketing) (pIFC)

www.frigtech.com.au

2/463 Marine Terrace, West End WA 6530

David Chandler

(08) 9932 6436

Harvest Trail Information Service (p103)

www.harvesttrail.gov.au

126-130 Deakin Avenue, Mildura VIC 3500

Alicia Pezzaniti

(03) 5025 4093

HM Clause (p13)

www.hmclause.com

177 Templestowe Rd, Templestowe Lower, VIC 3107

Carol Hitchins

(03) 8850 5400

Rivulis (p51)

www.rivulis.com

Tiffany Visser

1800 558 009

Tiger International Solutions (p17)

www.go2tigers.com

2 Tarlton Crescent, Perth International Airport WA 6105

Jason Radford

(08) 9479 0308

TriCal Australia (p53)

trical.com.au

5 Chamberlain St, Wingfield SA 5013

Veratin Pty Ltd (p32)

www.veratin.com.au

Unit 1, 14A Hines Rd, O’Connor 6163

Ramiz Boulos

0431 150 538

WA Crates (pIBC)

N/A

Crate Yard, Market City

Colin Strong-Grove

Wildeye (p25)

www.mywildeye.com

1/316 Onslow Rd, Shenton Park WA 6008

Kieran

WA Grower SUMMER 2020

1300 945 339


WA crates The professional packaging service for WA’s finest fresh fruit and vegetables

0 email: service@wacrates.com.au


Unlocking the true power of water and electrical technology for WA growers. At BON, we’ve been working across the unique WA horticultural landscape for over 30 years with growers in every corner of the state. As a family owned and run business, we take a proactive approach to identify and solve your electrical, water and refrigeration needs. We can bring your vision to life through the design and install of new infrastructure, partnering with you along the way to keep things running as they should. We pride ourselves on doing the right thing by our customers, providing you with end-to-end solutions through dependable service.

Pictured in the photo, left to right: Brandon Southern (Project Manager), Frank Bonomi (Company Director), Ben Bonomi (Technical Director).

Water

Comprehensive Irrigation System Solutions | Pump Systems and Associated Controls | Filtration Systems and Solutions | Automated Fertigation and Water Control | Maintenance of your entire water supply system Water Measurement Technologies

Electrical

Back Up Power Solutions | Packing Floor Custom Design Automation | Horticultural Climate Control General Electrical Maintenance | Programmable Logic Control Systems | Energy Efficient Lighting Solutions Energy Harvesting Solutions | Refrigeration Systems and Solutions

Automation

Automation Assessments | Equipment Monitoring & Automation | Robotics | Conveyer Systems Flow Wrap/Shrink Wrap Systems | Check Weighting | Xray Scanning | Print and Laser Labelling Automated Palletising | Carton Erectors | Labelling Machines | Vibration Tables

“Over the past 20 years BON Electrics have been our electrical contractor of choice. We have worked with them on numerous projects and they continually support our business with ongoing maintenance. We recommend BON Electrics without hesitation, they’re efficient, knowledgeable and consistently deliver the high quality of work required by WA Corn Growers.” - Jim Trandos, Trandos Farms

If you’re looking for a partner with knowledge and experience in the WA horticulture industry, book your free consultation with BON today.

www.bon.com.au

Profile for vegetablesWA

WA Grower Magazine Summer 2020  

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