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Avocados Australia Guacamole 14 September 2018

Welcome to the latest edition of the Guacamole newsletter. Get all the latest avocado industry news at your fingertips every fortnight!

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Simspon Farms on the market

The country's largest producer of fresh pack avocados is expected to be formally advertised as for sale this week, with expectations of a $200 million-plus payday for its family shareholders. Street Talk says adviser PwC has started testing appetite for Queensland-based Simpson Farms, which produced 1.4 million avocados last year. It is understood Simpson Farms' family shareholders are selling for succession reasons, the AFR story says.


Avocados Australia talks export

Avocados Australia reinforced the need for new and expanded export markets as part of a special briefing with Austrade regional and business managers in Hong Kong last week. Organised by Hort Innovation during Asia Fruit Logistica, the briefing was a chance to highlight the increasing domestic production that will require expanded international markets. “We do expect our export volumes will increase in coming years, focusing on providing top quality premium grade avocados,” AAL CEO John Tyas says.


Promoting Australian avocados in Asia

Avocados Australia Communications Manager Lisa Yorkston was in Hong Kong last week, as part of Hort Innovation’s Taste Australia pavilion within Asia Fruit Logistica. The event built further awareness of Australia’s top-quality product within the market and showcased new education materials developed for importers and retailers of Australian avocados. A majority of the interest was from mainland Chinese importers and retailers, as well as those in Taiwan and South Korea.

Amanda Madden - Staff Member

Celebrating 10 years

This week we celebrated a milestone with one of our Avocados Australia team. Amanda Madden, a well-known face (and voice!) has been with our organisation for 10 years, turning her hand to everything from the logistics of a Qualicado event to calling more than 400+ growers every year for the annual tree census. Congratulations Amanda!


Secure your voting rights: Hort Innovation AGM

Hort Innovation’s AGM will be held in Brisbane on 23 November. Should you wish to secure your voting entitlements, you need to complete an Annual Levy Return form. You can either complete the Annual Levy Return form online by Friday 28 September 2018 and use your unique member number and PIN that you have already received via hard copy post and email; or return the hard copy form already sent to all levy-paying members of Hort Innovation. The hard copy form must also be received by 28 September. If you have any questions, contact Link Market Service on 1800 660 083.

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New permit issued by AVPMA

The AVPMA has issued a permit for Paclobutrazol (a soil drench application), for use in high density avocado orchards for vegetative growth management. The permit (PER85877) was issued on 29 August 2018 and expires on 31 August 2023. Click here to access the permit. If you have an adverse experience as a result of using this permit, you should complete the Non-Performance Reporting Form for Horticultural Pesticides form.


Campaign ad back on TV

Burst two of the Australian Avocados campaign launched on 9 September, and the industry’s latest television commercial will be played during popular shows such as The Block, The Bachelor Australia, Australian Survivor, 60 Minutes, and The Project. The avocado industry’s marketing activities are funded by your grower levies. See the latest marketing activity that’s helping Aussie consumers connect with (and eat!) Australian Avocados.

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Thinking about exporting?

As Australian avocado volumes continue to grow, the development of export markets will become increasingly important to maintain profitability in the industry. The Export section of the BPR has been given a refresh, with updated information added to assist potential avocado exporters.

The BPR is our free online one-stop-shop to support best practice throughout the Australian avocado supply chains. We encourage all of our stakeholders to register and access this vital resource.

You can log in (or request access!) via www.avocado.org.au/best-practice-resource/.


Tasmanian orchard producing well. 12/9/18.
The Bidwell family’s cool climate avocado orchard in Tasmania produced a 50t crop from just under 3ha, planted with more than 1,200 Hass trees.

Water security issues in WA. 12/9/18.
A group of self-supply water users in the region are uncertain about future access to water if the proposed Southern Forests Irrigation Scheme goes ahead.

Falling water levels in Burnett Q. 10/9/18.
Boondooma Dam, accessed by electricity generators and farmers in the Burnett region of Central Queensland, is at 34%.

Blackbutt avo festival success. 10/9/18.
Organisers report more than 4,000 visitors for the Queensland town’s annual festival, including Alvin the Avocado.


Mexico: avocado seeds to bioplastics. 12/9/18.
A bioplastics company in Michoacan state is using discarded avocado seeds to make bioplastics.

Mexican government shuts down illegal orchards. 11/9/18.
Mexican authorities closed 22.97 hectares of illegal orchards which had cut down 1,162 trees in order plant avocados in Michoacan.

Colombia admitted to World Avocado Organization. 11/9/18.
The announcement, which came during the Asia Fruit Logistica trade show last week in Hong Kong, represents another milestone in the Andean nation’s push to export more avocados.

US: new campaign to boost in-store purchases. 11/9/18.
Mission Produce has launched “Size Minded” to encourage retailers to grow consumer demand by offering a range of sizes, for a range of purposes.

NZ Avocado Conference success. 6/9/18.
The conference attracted more than 400 delegates and included a conference and field day program.

NZ: Seeka production starts. 3/9/18.
Seeka expects to produce 650,000 trays this season, supplying export markets in Australia, Korea, Japan and, for the first time, China.


Avocados Australia AGM

Notice has been issued to the Members of Avocados Australia Limited that the 15th Annual General Meeting of Avocados Australia Limited will be held at the Brisbane Markets Rocklea, Brisbane, Queensland 4106 (Training Room 2, Martin Taylor Drive off 385 Sherwood Road), on Friday, 2 November, from 1pm to 2pm.


HARPS training dates set

The next HARPS training courses are in Gatton Q next week Cairns Q in October (see calendar below). The course has been designed to reflect the immediate needs for producers to meet the HARPS requirements, using case studies and practical examples where possible. In addition, the course will include Food Safety Risk assessment and the HACCP process. Attendees will receive a handbook, example templates and pro-formas that attendees can use to adapt to their own specific activities. The fee for the course is $680 per person (plus GST). To ensure each attendee is able to get the most out of the training, HARPS will try to cap the number of attendees to 15 per daily session. Other locations will be announced soon. For more information: https://harpsonline.com.au/.




17 Sept – HARPS training course, Gatton Q

18-20 Sept – Nuffield Australia National Conference, Sydney NSW 
26 Sept – Fresh Produce Safety Conference, Sydney NSW
4 Oct – HARPS training course, Cairns Q
18-20 Oct – PMA Fresh Summit, Florida USA
2 Nov – Avocados Australia AGM, Brisbane Q
9-12 Nov – Australian Biological Farming Conference, Gold Coast Q
23 Nov – Hort Innovation AGM, Brisbane Q

24-25 Nov – Avocado Festival 2018, Araluen WA

6-8 Feb – Fruit Logistica Berlin 
23-27 Sept – IX World Avocado Congress, Colombia

Horticulture Innovation Australia
Guacamole has been funded by Hort Innovation, using the avocado research and development levy and contributions from the Australian Government. Hort Innovation is the grower-owned, not-for-profit research and development corporation for Australian horticulture.