See how the passionfruit levy is hard at work! Scroll down to learn about Hort Innovation’s current investment of the industry levy, and results from these investments, in the R&D and marketing snapshots – or click on a project name below to go straight to a specific update.

All projects are funded by Hort Innovation using the passionfruit R&D or marketing levy and, in the case of R&D, contributions from the Australian Government.


Don’t forget to grab the Passionfruit Fund Annual Report

Released at the start of November, Hort Innovation’s Passionfruit Fund Annual Report sums up all levy investments and activities from 2016/17. You can download a copy here, or head to Hort Innovation’s Annual Report Portal to place an order for a free hard copy of the report.

What research do you want to see?

As always, Hort Innovation encourages all growers and industry participants to share their thoughts and ideas for the research they want to see – whether that’s within the industry-specific Passionfruit Fund (where research is funded by grower levies and Australian Government contributions), or within Hort Innovation’s strategic partnership initiative, Hort Frontiers (where research is funded through partnerships with co-investors).

Watch this video to see how ideas are collected and grown into projects, then submit your suggestions for new projects here.

Get closer to your investments with free membership

Hort Innovation membership brings you closer to the investment activities and results in your levy fund, and to the organisation as a whole. As well as providing the opportunity for voting rights at the company’s Annual General Meeting, membership helps you connect with your industry’s Relationship Manager, sends Hortlink straight to your inbox for first-look access, provides exclusive Grower Intel alerts with industry-specific news and opportunities, and more.

Paying a levy doesn’t automatically make you a member, so read more here and sign up now!

Find resources on the Hort Innovation Passionfruit Fund page…

Along with Hortlink, Hort Innovation’s webpage for passionfruit levy payers is a great source of info. On it you’ll find:

  • Key documents including the Passionfruit Strategic Investment Plan (SIP) for 2017-2021, released earlier in 2017, and the Passionfruit Fund Annual Report
  • The latest meeting notes from the passionfruit Strategic Investment Advisory Panel (SIAP), which most convened in June 2017 and is due to meet again during February 2018.
  • Current financial documents regarding your levy, including operating statements and expenditure summaries for R&D and marketing projects
  • Grower resources, events and articles of interest to the industry.
Any questions?

The passionfruit industry has a new Relationship Manager at Hort Innovation – Bradley Mills. Brad is always available to answer questions or provide info on the Passionfruit Fund program, and can be reached on 0408 635 465 or at



Australian passionfruit industry communications program

Status: New project

Key research provider: Passionfruit Australia

What’s it all about? Beginning in September 2017 to carry on and expand the duties of previous project Communication program for the passionfruit industry (PF13004), this new investment will continue to keep Australian passionfruit growers and other industry stakeholders informed about the latest R&D and marketing activities, essential best practice information, and other key industry news, information and resources.

Specifically, the project is responsible for…

  • Production of The Passion Vine magazine, which is delivered to industry quarterly and has recently been re-designed under the project
  • Passiflora Monthly e-newsletters, a new addition to the communications program
  • Updating and maintenance of the website, which has been redeveloped under the project
  • Delivery of regional field days and research forums, which will communicate current and past research, showcase new innovations, and facilitate the sharing of resources and knowledge across the industry.The first round of regional field days begun in October 2017, with upcoming events including a series of regional field days focusing on soil health across major growing areas in the first half of 2018, plus a research forum to tie in with the Hort Connections event taking place in Brisbane during June 2018.Look for details of upcoming events in industry communication channels as they become available.


Check out the new website at and sign up for the Passiflora e-newsletter if you are not already a subscriber.

Tropical fruit export strategy

Status: New project

Key research provider: McKINNA et al

What’s it all about? This short multi-industry project will support the building of sustainable export markets and supply chain capabilities for a range of tropical commodities, including passionfruit, banana, lychee, papaya and persimmon. It has been tasked with developing a collective export strategy for these fruits – a road map for growing export markets, underpinned by information on each high-prospect market for each fruit category.

What’s the latest update? This investment was contracted by Hort Innovation in November. Look for information on the completed strategy in future editions of Hortlink and in industry channels.

National passionfruit breeding program

Status: Ongoing project

Key research provider: Southern Cross University

What’s it all about? Established in mid-2016, this three-year project with Southern Cross University is focused on the development and evaluation of new passionfruit varieties to ensure the sustainability of the industry. It is working towards the release of new commercial varieties before varietal decline affects the profitability of current ones such as Sweetheart and Misty Gem.

The project is also selecting and trialling new rootstocks, conducting Panama breeding and establishing an industry seedbank to conserve and enhance current passionfruit genetic material in Australia.

What’s the latest update? With an official project update now due to Hort Innovation, you’ll find full details in the next edition of Hortlink – including an update on the rootstock and Panama variety work that was recently added to the scope of the research.

In the meantime, researcher Peter Bundock provided a detailed summary of recent project activities for the spring 2017 edition of The Passion Vine magazine, produced under the industry’s new communications program described above. Check out this breeding program update on p8 here.

Passionfruit industry minor use program

Status: Ongoing project

Key research provider: Hort Innovation

What’s it all about? Through this project, levy funds and Australian Government contributions are used to renew and apply for new minor use permits for the passionfruit industry. These submissions are prepared and submitted to the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA).

What’s the latest update? All current minor use permits for the industry are searchable at Permit updates are also circulated in Hort Innovation’s Growing Innovation e-newsletter, which levy-paying members receive monthly. Not a member? Sign up to our membership program for free here.



Hort Innovation is responsible for investing the passionfruit marketing levy into a range of activities to drive awareness and consumption, under the Hort Innovation Passionfruit Fund. Here’s a look at some of the most recent activity. If you attended the recent passionfruit AGM and field day, you would also have received an update on marketing from the industry’s marketing manager at Hort Innovation, Kelly McGuinness (

Public relations (PR) activity

At the time of writing, media outreach was underway for the summer flush of passionfruit, and this will continue into the new year – look for updates and results in the next edition of Hortlink. A big early win has been Aussie Passionfruit being featured on an eye-catching cover of Delicious magazine, which has a readership of more than 578,000 people.

Creative development

Recipe development has been underway, with new photographs and content set to be shared with media, to inspire consumers on Facebook and Instagram, and to appear in new point-of-sale brochures.

The new creative that has been developed for passionfruit point-of-sale ties features ‘A splash of passion’ messaging, and will be launched prior to the winter flush.

Social media activity
  • Between September and mid-November, the Aussie Passionfruit Facebook page generated more than one million page ‘impressions’ (the number of times content from the page was displayed to people), with more than 4000 people sharing content from the page and close to 2000 comments and some 11,700 ‘likes’ seen.
  • Since the beginning of this period, the Facebook page has grown by more than 4500 followers to some 45,000 fans, while the Aussie Passionfruit Instagram page (@aussiepassionfruit) has grown to 985 followers – allowing Aussie Passionfruit messaging and inspiration to reach an ever-expanding audience of consumers.
  • The Facebook page features two content posts a week, while Instagram features three posts a week. Both channels highlight content that focuses on the delicious taste and provenance of passionfruit.
  • The audience responds particularly well to sweet recipes and also farm updates. The best performing Facebook post between September and mid-November was a recipe for passionfruit bliss balls from popular health brand The Healthy Mummy. This recipe offered fans an alternative, healthy snack for lunch boxes or with a cup of tea. There were some 10,400 clicks on the post, with the content reaching 81,320 people and being shared more than 830 times.The best performing Instagram post featured some styled passionfruit on the vine, with some halves open and spilling juicy pulp. It also carried a health message. The post received 446 likes and 5 comments. See it here.
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