COVID-19 updates & news ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌
      
Avocados Australia Guacamole 15 May 2020
Guacamole
 
 
Photo by CDC on Unsplash

COVID-19 avocado orchard and packshed guide

We are continuously updating our avocado specific orchard and packshed guide for dealing with COVID-19. Additions in the last two weeks include PPE information for New South Wales growers, and useful templates for all growers from the Queensland Government. Click here for tips and resources we've specifically collated with avocado orchards in mind.

 
Photo by CDC on Unsplash

COVID-19 restrictions and food service

Well, provided there are no spikes, we now have a staged plan to reach what the Australian Government is calling a CovidSafe economy. Importantly for the avocado industry, this includes a partial re-opening of food service. However, all levels of government are stressing much care still needs to be taken to contain future outbreaks.

 
Photo by CDC on Unsplash

Lessons from workplace outbreaks

The Australian avocado industry celebrates safety in the fight against COVID-19. Learnings from Cedar Meats, a Victorian meat processing facility where a COVID-19 cluster has emerged, highlights the importance of ensuring the safety of avocado staff, families and community.

 
Hort Innovation webinar

Consumer market webinar for growers

Hort Innovation is hosting a webinar for growers, on the implications and opportunities of changing consumer behaviours and attitudes. The webinar is set for 1pm on 28 May. Click here to find out more about the key speakers from Hort Innovation, Fresh Analytics and Fiftyfive5.

 
Photo by CDC on Unsplash

Keep up to date

We are keeping the Australian News and the International News sections on our website updated as items come to hand. For the wider industry, we will also email important information directly, as needed, and we have compiled a (growing) list of national resources and information (click here). For members, we have a regular blog in the Member Area (log-in needed) and links to state-based resources and information (New South Wales, Northern Territory, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria, Western Australia). Please check the currency of the information and consider all relevant federal and state requirements as well.

 
Australian Avocados - #smashanavoathome

Hass returning to shelves

As Hass returns to the shelves, the levy-funded marketing program will continue to inspire consumers to #smashanavoathome with exciting content extending the use of avocados. Our grower videos have been rolling across social platforms and have received a good response. On Instagram the Stories have had more than 22,800 opportunities to see, with a completion rate of 96%. On Facebook, the Stories have had almost 4,000 unique opens (unique reach) and more than 150 engagements. Expect to see more influencer content across social media to celebrate the start of the Hass season. Here's some #smashanavoathome content: sincerely_sammy, thehealthyhunter, sydneyfoodfeels, everycrumb, healthyhappyhabits, eatswithmarie, hazel_and_cacao, the_smallseed_ and kerabeareats. Australian Avocados marketing activities are managed by Hort Innovation and funded by the avocado marketing levy.

 
Take the survey

Missing pest management information?

Researchers from a new Hort Innovation Avocado Fund project, the Review and extension of avocado pests and their management (AV19001) need to hear from you to help assess the current approaches being used for managing insects and mites. This information will be used to identify areas in need of further research and extension investment and areas which don’t.

 
BPR snafu

Best Practice Resource snafu

You may have noticed our BPR had a little moment over the weekend and early this week, denying access to users. We’ve had a chat with it, and all is now well. However, if you experience any issues accessing the website, please use the website contact form to let us know. The BPR is the home of a wealth of industry information on growing, transport, workplace health and safety, and much more.

 
Tristate Regional Avocado Forum
 
Visit the Avocado Directory today!
 
What's new in your BPR? Click to find out
 
Guac_BPR 135x174

Managing ripening

Each batch of fruit needs to be managed separately during ripening, with twice-daily checks on progress to ensure that fruit does not become over-ripe before cooling and despatch. Ripening needs to be planned according to customer orders. Ripening fruit at warmer temperatures helps it to ripen faster but increases the risk of rot development. Low ripening temperatures may not allow Hass to fully change colour. Optimum ripening temperature depends on fruit maturity: ripen early season fruit at 18–20°C (dry matter <26%), and ripen late season fruit at 16–18°C (dry matter >26%). Once fruit has reached the required stage of ripeness (minimum stage 3), forced-air cool to 5°C for Hass. Breaking (stage 3) to ripe (stage 5) fruit need to be dispatched to retailers as soon as possible; this fruit should not be stored for more than three days. More information on managing ripening best practice is available on the Education Materials section of the BPR Library.

HASS REMINDER: Data loggers can be used to monitor fruit during transport. Have you checked your transport company have trucks set to 5°C for Hass?

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.

 
Avocados Australia administers ANVAS so growers have access to healthy avocado trees
 
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Get more Australian industry news
 

NSW & QLD visa holder requirements for COVID-19. 14/5/2020

The NSW and Queensland state government have announced their measures to ensure horticultural businesses can continue to safely operate and to protect workers from COVID-19. Read more from NSW here, and about Queensland here.


Perfection Fresh reintroducing workforce. 14/5/2020.

The fresh produce company is planning to bring workers back into the office, but with careful scheduling to ensure physical distancing requirements are adhered to. Read more in Produce Plus.


COVID-19: trend to at-home dining will stay. 13/5/2020.

The trend toward increased in-home dining prompted by COVID-19 lockdowns, is set to continue into the future as restrictions ease, with value and innovation set to drive results in this category, a UBS report finds. Read more from inside FMCG.


CQ volumes down. 13/5/2020.

“Volumes are down 10-15% and sizing is also smaller in north and Central Queensland; this was expected as a result of the severe drought where there was no rain for eight months and growers had to rely on irrigation which is never as good as rainfall,” said Antony Allen from Avolution. Read more in FreshPlaza.


Opal wins gold for packaging. 13/5/2020.

Opal (nee Australian Paper) has won a gold award for Sustainable Packaging Design of the Year – Product Protection at the 2020 Australasian Packaging Innovation & Design (PIDA) Awards, for a moulded paper insert for fresh produce. Read more in timberbiz.


WA growers encourage pollinators. 7/5/2020.

A survey of avocado growers in Western Australia's South West Region found that three-quarters of the respondents have encouraged pollinators such as insects and birds onto their properties, mainly by maintaining ‘weeds’ in their inter-rows. Read more in FreshPlaza.


Encouraging consumers to #smashanavoathome. 5/5/2020.

Avocados CEO John Tyas is among ag industry members worldwide encouraging consumers to eat their favourite foods at home, from avocado in Australia to cheese in France to fries in Belgium. Watch the ABC’s The World.


Hort Innovation launches new marketing campaign. 4/5/2020.

Hort innovation has launched a marketing campaign hopes will invigorate purchasing habits for fruit vegetables and nuts during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more in Produce Plus.


Safe Work Australia adds COVID-19 hub. 4/5/2020.

The Safe Work Australia website has been updated to provide a central hub of work health and safety (WHS) guidance and tools to help Australian workplaces manage the health and safety risks posed by COVID-19. Read more here.


Ag levy survey closing

The Australian Government’s survey into streamlining and modernising the legislation associated with the levy system closes on 31 May. Click here to take the survey.

 
Click here for a round up of international avocado news
 

Workers in US packhouse tests positive. 15/5/2020.

A Calavo packhouse in Ventura County has had more than 35 employees test positive for COVID-19. The positive test happened on 7 May, the packhouse closed on 8 May and after cleaning, re-opened on 12 May. Read more from KEYT.


Tanzania’s avocado growth. 12/5/2020.

Less than a decade ago, Tanzania was not an avocado exporter, but in 2019 it dispatched 9,000MT. A majority of exports go to Europe. Read more in Fresh Fruit Portal.


South Africa trims export forecasts. 6/5/2020.

The South African avocado export forecast has been cut by about two million cartons as the effects of COVID-19 on international markets becomes clearer. Read more in Asiafruit.

 
 
Your round up of export news that matters
 

Asia Fruit Logistica date change

This major fruit and vegetable event has been pushed back again, due to COVID-19. Organisers now plan to hold the Asiafruit Congress on 17 November and the Asia Fruit Logistica on 18-20 November. The venue remains in Singapore. Read more from Asia Fruit Logistica.


Peru increases export value despite COVID-19. 14/5/2020.

Total Peruvian fruit exports grew in value by 37% in March year-on-year, mainly due to an increase in avocado and grape exports. Read more in Fresh Fruit Portal.


India gazettes market improvements for Australian produce. 14/5/2020.

While this does not include avocados, India has agreed to new biosecurity arrangements for pome fruit, summer fruit and table grapes this week. “This is a massive market of young, health conscious and vegetarian consumers seeking high quality fresh and safe fruit and vegetables,” Ag Minister David Littleproud said. Read more from the Australian Government.


Want regular export news?

Sign up for Export Coordinator Joy Tang’s regular email updates on avocados export related news and grants. Email your contact details to export@avocado.org.au to be subscribed. (Note, you must be a participant in the Australian avocado industry to subscribe.)

 
 
 

Have news to share?

Have you recently read a story of interest to your fellow avocado industry members? Email our Communications Manager. Please note, suggested content will be selected for use based on our editorial standards.

 
Check our calendar for more!
 
Inaki Hormaza

International speaker for Tristate Regional Forum

The Tristate Avocado Regional Forum will be held online, on Wednesday, 27 May. The main topic is understanding flowering and maximising fruit set, presented by Spanish avocado researcher Dr Iñaki Hormaza. You can find the agenda for this Zoom event online here. RSVP by Friday, 22 May to Amanda on admin2@avocado.org.au or call 07 3846 6566 to reserve your spot. All industry members are welcome to attend any event but for our online events, preference will be given to those in the region first should we have to limit numbers.

 

2020

27 May – Avocado Regional Forum, Tristate (online event)

28 May - Hort Innovation Brain Date webinar (consumer behaviour)

17 Nov – Asiafruit Congress, Singapore

18-20 Nov – Asia Fruit Logistica, Singapore

 

2021

7-9 Jun – Hort Connections, Brisbane Q

21-23 Jun – Australasian Plant Breeding Conference, Gold Coast Q

 
 
 
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.