Hort Innovation continues to invest the pineapple R&D levy in projects to strengthen access to and the uptake of skills, knowledge and technologies in the industry. Read about the specific initiatives driving capacity and growth in the R&D snapshot below. For the latest on pineapple marketing activities, head to the marketing snapshot.

INDUSTRY UPDATE

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

  • Important updates regarding the pineapple 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 pineapple Strategic Investment Advisory Panel (SIAP) when providing advice to Hort Innovation on potential levy investments.
  • The latest updates regarding the pineapple SIAP, including details on the panel’s recently appointed chair, Eoin Wallis, and summaries from all SIAP meetings to date. The SIAP last met in July 2016 and is due to meet again in Brisbane in March.
  • The 2015/16 pineapple industry annual report, detailing activities from the previous financial year.
  • Grower resources, events and articles of interest to the pineapple industry.

Any questions?

As well as the pineapple grower page, Hort Innovation Relationship Manager Astrid Hughes is always available to answer questions on the pineapple program on 0405 306 334 or at astrid.hughes@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

Facilitating the development of the Australian pineapple industry stage 3 (PI15000)

Status: Ongoing project

What’s it all about? Entering its second year, this project supports the adoption of innovation and technology in the Australian pineapple industry to help growers remain resilient, viable and profitable. It is primarily delivered by an industry development officer (IDO), who helps build knowledge of R&D in the industry, facilitates opportunities for information exchange and learning among growers and with other stakeholders, and promotes capacity building in the industry.

What’s the latest update? Activities of the IDO, Georgie Townsend, continue to include:

  • Production of the quarterly industry newsletter The Pineapple Press, with issues uploaded to the grower section of aussiepineapples.com.au
  • Updating of the Australian Pineapples website with industry information
  • Facilitation of annual Pineapple Field Days, with the 2017 event to be held in South East Queensland in July (details will be distributed via industry channels when available)
  • Facilitation of grower study groups, as detailed in project PI13006, with the IDO to continue to facilitate these workshops at the conclusion of project PI13006
  • Involvement in relevant industry events and meetings as needed
  • Facilitation of regular meetings between major packhouses, grower representatives, and Hort Innovation representatives to discuss supply, quality and marketing activity to ensure alignment.
Study groups enabling industry adaption to pineapple market changes (PI13006)

Status: Near-completed project

What’s it all about? This project has been responsible for facilitating the communication of up-to-date information among Australian pineapple growers through grower study groups. The ultimate goal has been to arm growers with new skills to produce high yields of good-quality fruit, and to help provide the information needed to make good business decisions.

What’s the latest update? The facilitation project is now wrapping up, with its final report to be available and summarised in the next edition of Hortlink. At the time of last reporting in Hortlink (Spring 2016), all four regional grower study groups in the project had completed a number of workshops. Detailed minutes and some presentations from these meetings had been distributed to attendees, and continue to be available on the pineapple industry website, www.aussiepineapples.com.au.

At the time of last reporting, a production forecast survey was also undertaken to update the estimate for the 2016 calendar year.


Growers attending meetingGrowers attending a three-day meeting/tour in the Northern Territory


Integrated pest, disease and weed management systems for pineapple (PI12008)

Status: Completed project

What was it all about? Concluding in November 2016, this project funded the employment of a technical officer for the pineapple industry, to investigate management options for major pest, disease and weed threats. The ultimate goal was to develop contemporary integrated pest and disease management systems for the industry, with the investigation of alternative products and strategies to current pesticides.

Throughout the life of the project, the project conducted trials to investigate the potential of…

  • A range of nematicides to manage root-knot nematodes
  • Insecticides to control pineapple mealybug
  • Pre-emergent herbicides for effective weed control
  • Root-promoting substances for improved root development during early plant growth stages (to establish strong, healthy plants)
  • Plastic mulch, which was found to have potential to control weeds, reduce herbicide application, improve crop growth and increase fruit size
  • Trapping systems to monitor symphylid populations, with a new method identified.

The technical officer participated at regional study group meetings and prepared articles for The Pineapple Press, to keep industry informed of progress.

It is expected that the data generated from the project’s trials may assist in the registration of new pesticides and adoption of new management systems for the pineapple industry, through further work is required, particularly before industry recommendations can be made on the use of the above products and approaches.

Full details can be found in the project’s final report, which will ultimately be available to order at www.horticulture.com.au/about/resources-publications-final-reports. Final reports are free to Australian horticulture levy payers, registered Hort Innovation members and industry representative bodies.

MARKETING SNAPSHOT

THE LATEST ACTIVITY THAT’S GROWING THE INDUSTRY

After the successful launch of the ‘Endless Aussie Summer’ campaign – which involved a pineapple takeover of Sydney’s Entertainment Quarter in September, as reported in the last edition of Hortlink – the campaign is leading up to a busy six months focussing on the message that Australian pineapples are available all year round.

Recent months have had a strong focus on social media, while the second half of the financial year will see some six new inspiring and fresh recipes being developed, printed and released to key influencers and media. Australian Pineapple ambassador Martyna Angell will be developing these recipes on behalf of industry in March. As with previous new recipes, they will highlight the ‘#endlesssummer’ factor and all-year seasonality of pineapples.

The www.aussiepinepples.com.au website will also undergo a refresh and upgrade with a focus to inspire consumers and showcase simple ways pineapples can be enjoyed all year round. New resources for the site are being developed.

The new content will also be showcased through social media channels, including Facebook (www.facebook.com/AussiePineapples) and Instagram (@aussiepineapples).

A targeted influencer campaign will also see bloggers and key media receive hampers in late March, highlighting all the key messages from the marketing campaign.

Seasonal media releases will also be developed in line with the autumn flush of fruit, while the ‘always on’ approach to the public relations campaign will ensure reactive and proactive media for the remainder of the annual campaign.

Print page