Managing funds to grow Australian horticulture

The funds that we invest are provided by the Australian horticultural industry (growers and supply chain), the Australian Government and co-investment partners.

Hort Innovation invests these funds into research and development and marketing (growing demand) programs and activities that increase productivity, farm gate profitability, and boost sales of Australian produce in Australia and overseas.

Our investments are aimed at giving growers the knowledge and services they require to build a profitable, competitive, and sustainable business — for today as well as tomorrow.

Investments made in marketing are designed to improve activities beyond the farm gate to better meet customer needs in both domestic and export markets.

Investments in research and development (R&D) address high priority industry needs, such as pest incursion control, food security and gaining global market access. Using systematic experimentation or analysis in any field of science, technology, economics or business, investment in R&D aims to acquire or apply knowledge that improves any aspect of the production, processing, storage, transport or marketing of horticulture products.

Industry funding

Industry funds are derived in two ways:


Growers of horticultural products pay a statutory transaction levy on the sale of their produce.* These levies are collected by the Australian Government through the Levies Revenue Service and distributed to Hort Innovation for investment. More than fifty levies are collected in the horticulture industry across 35 commodities.

* with the exception of the Processed Potato R&D levy which is paid by processors.

Collective Industry Funds

Industry sectors that do not have a statutory levy in place may apply to Hort Innovation to be recognised as a Collective Industry Fund, where funds are contributed by growers and managed in the same manner as a statutory levy.

Download the Collective Industry Funds criteria.

Australian Government funding

The Australian Government also contributes funding up to 0.5% of the aggregate gross value of farm gate production (GVP) of all horticultural industries. These funds are then applied to research and development programs at the discretion of the Hort Innovation board.

Co-investment funding

Partners seeking to achieve similar research and development outcomes also provide funding.

Our two-pool investment model

Our investments in R&D and marketing are made for both the near and long term. This is reflected in our two pool investment model:

Pool 1

R&D and marketing investments within Pool 1 are made specifically on behalf of levy paying industries. These investments focus on the explicit needs identified and prioritised by the industry from which the levy funds have been derived.

R&D investment within this pool is funded from grower levies that are matched with Australian Government funds up to 0.5% of the GVP for each industry sector that has a statutory levy or a recognised collective industry fund.

In general, investments within Pool 1 provide outcomes that have a 1-5 year delivery timeframe and, in the case of R&D, span a wide scope of investment types and are more applied in their nature.

Pool 2

Investments made within Pool 2 seek to utilise Australian Government funding by attracting and partnering co-investment from other sources to invest in long-term and larger strategic projects.

Typically outcomes from Pool 2 investments will provide broad all-of-horticulture benefits that will impact the longer run future needs of the industry. These investments have time delivery horizons of between 1-15 years and focus on a more concise but intensive span of investment areas.