Hort Innovation’s current R&D levy investment for the chestnut industry has a focus on industry development, with communication and adoption initiatives designed to support the transfer of knowledge and technology to growers. Read more in the R&D snapshot below. In the marketing snapshot, see how Hort Innovation is putting the marketing levy to use.

INDUSTRY UPDATE

After you’ve read about the chestnut industry’s current levy investments and outcomes in this edition of Hortlink, check out Hort Innovation’s chestnut grower page. The grower page remains your one-stop-shop for industry information, including:

  • Important updates regarding the chestnut Strategic Investment Plan (SIP), as available. Developed in close consultation with growers and other industry stakeholders, the SIP is a document outlining the priorities for strategic investment in the industry. It is to be used like a ‘roadmap’ by the chestnut Strategic Investment Advisory Panel (SIAP) when providing advice to Hort Innovation on potential levy investments.
  • The latest updates regarding the chestnut SIAP, including details on the panel’s recently appointed chair, Claude Gauchat, and summaries from all SIAP meetings to date. The SIAP’s most recent meeting will be held at the end of February.
  • The 2015/16 chestnut industry annual report, detailing activities from the previous financial year.
  • Grower resources, events and articles of interest to the chestnut industry.

Any questions?

As well as Hort Innovation’s chestnut grower page, Hort Innovation Relationship Manager Corrine Jasper is always available to answer questions on the chestnut program on 0439 433 885 or at corrine.jasper@horticulture.com.au. For questions relating specifically to the industry’s marketing, contact Hort Innovation Marketing Manager Craig Perring.

R&D SNAPSHOT

NEW, ONGOING AND COMPLETED PROJECTS FOR THE INDUSTRY

Communication and adoption program for the Australian chestnut industry (CH16000)

Status: Ongoing project

What’s it all about? Strong communication and technical support is vital for stakeholders in the chestnut industry, particularly growers, to be able to make informed decisions when facing future challenges and opportunities. This project keeps the industry up-to-date with the latest news, R&D outputs and other key information through a variety of channels.

What’s the latest update? Still in its initial stages, the activities of this project include, but won’t be limited to:

  • Production of industry newsletter Nuts and Burrs in print and digital form
  • Quarterly updates via Australian Nutgrower
  • The running of industry field days, farm walks, regional grower meetings, workshops and other meetings as required – with the most recent field day held on Saturday, February 18
  • The development of other methods of communication, such as mini e-newsletters, in between the months that Nuts and Burrs is distributed
  • Maintenance and updating of the Chestnuts Australia Inc website (www.chestnutsaustralia.com.au) and social media, including Instagram
  • Collection, collation and dissemination of annual industry statistics, detailing national planting and production information for the industry.

MARKETING SNAPSHOT

THE LATEST ACTIVITY THAT’S GROWING THE INDUSTRY

At the time of writing the chestnut season was still to kick off, however a pre-season media release was sent out in December. The media release was designed to prompt and engage ‘long-lead’ media outlets to feature Australian chestnuts in their publications, programs or social media content during the 2017 season.

Key messages of the release were that chestnuts…

  • Are an Australian-grown seasonal fresh product
  • Have a unique and appealing flavour and texture
  • Have health benefits different to other nuts
  • Can be cooked and frozen to enjoy any time
  • Can be enjoyed in numerous ways in everyday meals
  • Are great value
  • Are gluten free.

The target audience for the content included food editors; health editors and writers; food presenters on TV and radio; breakfast TV and lifestyle programs; food bloggers; rural reporters; metropolitan newspapers; hospitality publications; nutritionists and dietitians; and horticulture industry publications.

There has also been work to identify 20 ‘short-lead’ media outlets that would be receptive to publishing or broadcasting a story on chestnuts during the season, for further targeted communication and product drops (and to establish opportunities for 2018).

Chestnuts brochure

For this season, a new consumer brochure – Chestnuts: Make everyday meals special with chestnuts – has been released (check it out here).

Offering consumers five new ways to create delicious everyday meals using fresh chestnuts, the brochure also includes educational messaging on selection, storage, preparation, usage ideas and health.

As well as being available to download from the industry website, the refreshed brochure will be distributed to consumers via independent greengrocers, grower promotions and industry promotional activities. It will also be circulated to foodies and media through public relations activities.

Other activities such as key consumer events are also planned for later in the season.

Consumer content online

An upgrade of the Chestnut Australia industry website in time for the new season launch means brand-new consumer pages focusing on preparing and cooking with chestnuts, with delicious recipes that are sure to inspire. Being easy to navigate and featuring clear and inspiring chestnut meals are the key goals for the consumer site.

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