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Avocados Australia Guacamole 12 May 2017

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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Avocado levy a feature of the 2017 budget

The new 0.1 cent/kilogram Plant Health Australia levy, introduced on 1 April, 2017 has featured in this week’s coverage of the Federal Budget, with consumers concerned it will lead to an increase in the price of smashed av. This is unlikely given the corresponding reduction in the R&D levy and the current stable supply levels. It is a bizarre comment but reinforces the popularity of the humble avocado. You can read more of the public reaction to the levy in Gizmodo, MSN, and Business Insider.

Jennie Franceschi

Chinese demand strong despite prices

Higher than normal Australian avocado prices are not deterring interest from Chinese buyers, according to Jennie Franceschi, of Fresh Produce Alliance. Speaking to ABC Rural, Ms Franceschi said her Asian customers had been willing to pay a landed price of up to $50 a tray, well above the more usual $20 a tray maximum.

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Avocados Australia working on export training

Avocados Australia is working with domestic exporters and partners in Singapore and Malaysia to develop training for supply chain parties. “Our aim is to ensure Australian avocados are reaching consumers in the best condition and are ready to eat," said John Tyas, CEO Avocados Australia. The training material targets importers, ripeners, wholesalers and retailers.

Tree crop mapping project

Mapping Australia's orchards

We need your input! Are you helping to ground truth a new map of Australia’s avocado, macadamia and mango orchards? The Web Map (no user account or subscription is required to comment) and its associated data will be used to develop a better understanding of Australian avocado production regions.


Australian avocado prices unlikely to rise. 030517.
Australian consumers can be ‘confident there are no shortages of avocados’ and prices will remain around the $2.80-$3 mark in the coming year, according to Avocados Australia CEO John Tyas. Speaking to SBS, Mr Tyas was reassuring local avo lovers about domestic supplies.


Queensland real estate offers year of smashed avo with purhcase. 110517.
New townhouses in Brisbane are being offered with the promise of a year's worth of free avocado on toast. The marketing stunt is a "tongue in cheek" response to last year's media chastising young buyers for spending money on brunch instead of saving.


Avocado producers ramp up security after significant produce theft. 100517
Western Australian avocado farmer Sandy Lyon, Albany, is spending up on security measures this year after thousands of dollars worth of his produce was stolen from his orchard. Produce theft has been previously reported in South Australia and New Zealand.


State-of-the-art Woolworths distribution facility under construction. 100517.
A new Woolworths distribution facility is being built in Melbourne's outer suburbs. Construction is expected to be completed in early 2018. The property, with automated warehousing space, is within 3km of the Western Port Toll Road and Eastlink Motorway.

ACCC issues country of origin claim warning. 080517.
The ACCC has reminded all food companies new Country of Origin food labelling laws apply from 1 July 2018. By that date, labels on most food products made in Australia will have to clearly show the percentage of Australian-grown or produced ingredients.


Sunraysia & Riverland growers remain optimistic. 050517.
Above 40C temperatures in just two or three days during February­ dashed Sunraysia and Riverland avocado growers a chance of experiencing a bumper crop, but the industry is optimistic about the quality of the crop.


Can Australia’s supermarkets stand up to AmazonFresh? 020517.
The question is, will high-speed grocery delivery service AmazonFresh increase the number of Australians grocery shopping online? Online grocery shopping is not widespread yet, but AmazonFresh looks set to up the ante, says Michele Levine, CEO, Roy Morgan Research.


China spend on Australian agribusiness triples. 010517.
China’s investment in Australian agribusiness has tripled as China strives to meet rising demand among its growing middle class. In 2016, Chinese companies invested $1.2 billion in Australian agribusiness, according to a KPMG and the University of Sydney report.


'Avocado hand': the serious injury caused by avocados. 100517
Due to the soaring popularity of avo, more people are accidentally cutting their hands when slicing open the fruit and removing the stone. According to British surgeons, A&E departments have seen in increasing number of injuries.


Avos linked to healthy lifestyle. 080517.
Research from the American National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey has found there may be a link between avocado consumption and an overall better diet, higher intake of essential nutrients and lower body weight.


Dutch second in avocado imports. 080517.
In 2016, the Netherlands imported a record €433m of avocados, making it the largest importer of avocados in the world after the US, according to the national statistics office, CBS. However, 79% were re-exported, mostly within Europe.


Is China to blame for the avocado shortage? 080517.
Chinese consumers are developing an insatiable taste for avocados. Suppliers have tried to ramp up production to meet the demand and China itself is looking to establish its own domestic production in the south of the country.


Avocado shortage hits Japan. 040517.
As with the North American and European markets, Japan is reportedly experiencing somewhat of an avocado shortage. The retail price for an avocado in Japan has risen from the 100- to 150-yen (US$0.83-1.25) range in March to the 150- to 200-yen range.

California looks to grow year-round. 020517.
With the development of new varieties of avocados, California may soon be able to grow avocados year-round. The goal is to breed varieties that aren't super tall, can be planted close to each other and have a high yield.

New Zealand crop estimates down.  01/05/17.
After a very high volume in 2016-17, the first crop estimates for the coming New Zealand season is down. The season just finished recorded 7.7 million trays produced; 2.8 million in the domestic market and 4.9 million in the export market.

Grower Study Groups - all welcome

Avocado grower study group workshops

All growers! Come along to an avocado study group workshop hosted by Simon Newett, QDAF, for access to knowledge that will lead to more consistent high yields of good-quality avocados.

Up next are study groups in Northern New South Wales/Tamborine, South Queensland and Western Australia
Avocados Australia's John Tyas will be at Hort Connections

Hort Connections 15-17 May, Adelaide

Avocados Australia CEO John Tyas will be at Hort Connections in Adelaide. John will join growers, supply chain members, government stakeholders and industry at the 15-17 May event.



15-17 May – Hort Connections, Adelaide
17 May – Women in Horticulture Networking Event, Hort Connections 
18 May – NNSW Tamborine Avocado Grower Study Group Meeting, Wollongbar
1 June – CNSW Avocado Grower Study Group Meeting
15 June – South Qld Avocado Study Group Meeting
20 June – WA Avocado Study Group Meeting (day 1)
22 June – WA Avocado Study Group Meeting (day 2)
13 July – North Qld Avocado Study Group Meeting
25 July – Tristate Avocado Study Group Meeting (two events in this week) 
6-8 September – Asia Fruit Logistica, Hong Kong
5 October – North Qld Avocado Study Group Meeting
2 November – CNSW Avocado Study Group Meeting
16 November – CQ Avocado Study Group Meeting
30 November – South Qld Avocado Study Group Meeting

Horticulture Innovation Australia
Guacamole has been funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia Limited using the research and development avocado levy (AV15002) and funds from the Australian Government.