Hort Innovation tour group about to embark! ‘Vegetable growers undertake PA pilgrimage’


A tour group, comprising of leading vegetable growers from Qld, Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia will undertake a four-day tour visiting precision vegetable destinations of interest. Organised and facilitated by Celia van Sprang and Julie O’Halloran from the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, the tour is an initiative of a strategic levy investment under the Hort Innovation Vegetable Fund. Designed to encourage the adoption of precision agriculture, the tour will increase networks in the industry by exposing some of the leading growers in the field to technology demonstrations and other innovative growers.

The tour begins on Thursday 5th, heading to Thorndon Park Produce and P’Petual Tomatoes north of Adelaide. This will include a presentation by Dr Rohan Kimber of PRISA/SARDI on iMaps PESTS Sentinel for monitoring pest incursions. On Friday the group will head to Melbourne where they will visit Boomaroo Nursery and Fresh Select. Saturday will see a visit to tech enthusiast’s Will Bignell before departing for Launceston. Sunday will include a visit to Greenvale Pastoral and Armidale Stud, both of which have implemented different aspects of precision agriculture into their vegetable and cropping systems. The group will squeeze in one last farm visit to Harvest Moon – one of Tasmania’s largest vegetable growing, packing, marketing and exporting businesses, on the Monday morning prior to commencement of the SPAA symposium.

On Monday and Tuesday afternoon, the vegetable tour cohort will join with other PA delegates to attend the SPAA Symposium – a fitting finish with this year’s event headlining some key vegetable topics and growers. Andrew Johanson (Mulgowie Farming Company), and Troy Cairns-Walker (Phantom Produce) tour delegates and leading growers, will speak on their experiences will PA in their respective businesses, covering reduced tillage practices and variable-rate fertiliser application and their experiences in PA implementation.

President Jessica Koch says ‘we are thrilled the tour and the symposium could intertwine, horticulture is a key development area for SPAA, and the fit for the Symposium being in Tasmania has been a purposeful decision. We hope the tour attendees, and all delegates come away with new networks from the collaboration’.

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