The melon industry identifies a new direction

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The melon industry identifies a new direction Powered By Docstoc
The melon industry
identifies a new direction
This report provides a snapshot of the       directions for the melon industry. These or contact the
2008/09 melon industry project activities    included the need to better understand     project leader listed at the end of each
funded via voluntary contributions (VCs)     consumer barriers to purchase and to       article in the report.
and matched funding from the Australian      collect seasonal data throughout the
                                                                                        For more information contact:
Government through HAL. The program          supply chain, possibly via a market-
is managed by HAL in partnership with        based industry development manager.        Dr Kendle Wilkinson, HAL Industry
the Australian Melon Association (AMA)       Delivery of quality fruit to the market    Services Manager
                                                                                        T 07 3394 8208
Management Committee. AMA became             place by all industry sectors remains
a B class member of HAL this year.           a difficult challenge, where the best
                                             efforts of all projects are undone if a
Melon VC research projects for 2008/09
                                             consumer has a poor eating experience
included projects on agronomy research;
                                             leading to diminished repurchase and
industry development activities through
                                             therefore decreased demand and price.
your Industry Development Officer (IDO),
Patrick Logue; the development of a new      Although only a relatively small
melon industry strategic plan; and an        investment program, significant
industry development needs assessment        industry benefits are already being
(IDNA). Workshops held as part of            generated through a range of voluntary
the strategic plan and IDNA process          contribution projects. For final reports
identified some new objectives and           and more detail on all projects, visit

   Climate Change is increasingly becoming a significant topic for the horticulture
   industry. In 2007/08 the industry began contributing to the horticulture
   component of phase one of the national Climate Change Research Strategy for
   Primary Industries (CCRSPI).

   The aim of CCRSPI Phase One was to develop a comprehensive research
   strategy that will allow industries to be informed by good research and
   be prepared to respond to the opportunities and risks presented by climate
   change. The scope of the strategy will be broad, covering any issue that needs
   consideration over the short (3 years), medium (5+ years) and long term (10+
   years). The research strategy and Phase One final report is available from the
   CCRSPI website

   HAL is now contributing to Phase Two of the project in 2008/09 in collaboration
   with other Rural RDCs, CSIRO and Federal, State and Territory Governments.
   This phase aims to develop an implementation plan for the research strategy for
   2009/10 onwards.
                                                                                        AMA chair Mark Daunt inspects seedless

    These projects have been funded by HAL using voluntary contributions from industry with matched funding from the
                                       Australian Government for all R&D activity.
    Continuing the development of the
    melon industry
    Industry development work plays an             together with preparation of a new            popular with growers, as was using
    important role in ensuring the continuing      industry strategic plan.                      email as a medium for communication.
    growth and success of every horticultural                                                    Industry meetings and the melon
                                                   Other activities included the
    industry and this year a variety of                                                          industry website were less popular.
                                                   identification of several new industry
    activities were undertaken within the                                                        Project VM05005
                                                   development projects. The necessary
    melon industry.                                funding submissions for these potential       Mark Daunt, Australian Melon
    During 2008/09, several industry               projects are currently being developed.       Association
                                                                                                 T 0411 642 708
    newsletters were published. These              The project was completed at the              E
    provided a valuable medium for                 end of June 2009 and a final report
    communicating to growers and other             prepared. This report included an
    industry stakeholders the progress made        evaluation of the project and the
    on their behalf in ongoing and recently        communication activities conducted
    completed R&D projects.                        within it.

    An industry development needs                  The evaluation found information
    assessment for the melon industry was          delivery via hardcopy formats
    conducted during the first half of 2009,       (newsletters and magazines) was more

      Future surveillance needs for bee
      Concern has been growing about the           After initial discussions, the options will   Project MT08044
      availability of pollination services for     be restricted to the use of bait hives        For more information contact:
      a number of horticultural industries if      and sentinel hives and exclusion within       David Dall, RIRDC
      foreign bee diseases arrive in Australia.    particular areas.                             T 02 6271 4128
      The aim of this project is to develop        Once the options have been developed
      a set of surveillance options based          a workshop will be held to validate the
      on current knowledge about bee               results and analysis.
      biosecurity. These options will be
      expert-based, with limited modelling to
      explore scenarios.

      In the first instance the targets of
      the surveillance will be the threats
      identified under the Emergency
      Animal Disease Response Agreement,
      although the final list may change after
      the initial scoping discussion with key
      stakeholders. Varroa and Tropilealaps
      mites will be included in the final list.

      The aim of the surveillance list will be
      to include some capacity for flexibility
      in the strategy to allow for the inclusion
      of other surveillance targets.
Simulation                               Developing an integrated
workShop for                             production system for
Varroa mite
incurSion                                melons
By using different scenarios
                                         As Australia’s melon industry continues         issues such as the interaction of grafted
to simulate an incursion of the
                                         to develop, growers need assistance             seedlings and soil-borne Fusarium.
potentially devastating honeybee
                                         with key production issues including            Despite their higher cost, grafted
pest Varroa mite into Australia, Plant
                                         personal watermelon agronomy, crop              seedlings should offset their price as a
Health Australia (PHA) is exploring
                                         scheduling and optimisation of planting         lower number of plants are required for
current and potentially improved
                                         density/configurations.                         comparable yields.
mechanisms for managing such an
event.                                   To uncover the necessary information,           During the year, an investigation into a
Workshop sessions held in August         a combination of farm-based trials and          new fruit disorder resulting in soft fruit
brought together representatives         key collaborations were undertaken in           around the seed cavities was completed.
from state and federal government,       2008/09. These included trials of several       Research indicated the cause was
spanning both animal and                 promising new watermelon varieties and          localised overmaturity of the fruit around
plant sectors, in addition to            a timing trial to compare establishment         the seed cavity.
representatives from PHA, Animal         of the pollinator at different times in
                                         relation to planting.                           A crop scheduling model for
Health Australia (AHA) and industry.
                                                                                         watermelons based on crop and weather
The first workshop focused               At Gatton, a foliar calcium and potassium       data from growing areas in NSW,
on planning an eradication effort        nutrition trial on honeydew melons              Queensland and the Northern Territory
in response to early detection of a      investigated the value of applying amino        has been developed and is currently
Varroa incursion, while the second       acid chelates of foliar calcium and             being tested using new season data.
explored longer-term management          potassium.
                                                                                         Project VM06001
strategies in response to recognition
                                         Grafted seedless watermelons are                For more information contact:
of a more deeply-entrenched
                                         currently being evaluated in conjunction        Gordon Rogers, Applied Horticultural
                                         with Withcott Seedlings and a visit was         Research
Potential gaps in the current            made to the melon growing region of             T 0418 517 777
proposed management system were          southern France to learn more about             E
highlighted and explored in order
to maximise national preparedness
in the event that such a scenario
becomes reality.

Project MT08048
For more information contact:
Dr David Dall, RIRDC
T 02 6271 4128

                                         Melon plants grafted onto zucchini rootstocks and grown under low tunnels, France            3
    Development of melon industry strategic
    plan 2009-2014 and melon industry
    development needs assessment
    In 2008 the Australian Melon                 HAL suggested that, in conjunction with    ‘acceptable/marketable’ melon quality,
    Association commenced a major                the updating of its Strategic Plan, the    providing industry members with ‘best
    update of its Strategic Plan, a review       melon industry carry out an industry       practice’ tools and information, and
    of its previous strategy implementation      development needs assessment to assist     re-developing the industry’s website.
    activities, and development of a new         it in selecting the best ways to capture
                                                                                            The project was completed in late
    Strategic Plan. This was to ensure           benefits from its R&D investments.
                                                                                            August 2009.
    the continuing relevance of priorities
                                                 Action plans for implementing the
    and strategies guiding investment of                                                    Project VM08001
                                                 industry’s highest priorities were
    industry funds from 2009-2014.                                                          Richard Coutts
                                                 prepared during the strategic planning
    The review resulted in agreement             and needs assessment processes. These      T 07 3821 6754
    that industry should continue to work        included projects relating to securing
    together to ensure melon businesses          the services of an Industry Development
    are profitable and sustainable               Manager, increasing awareness in melon
    and bring about a doubling of                supply chains about the key purchasing
    consumption over the next five years –       triggers for consumers, encouraging
    at remunerative prices for industry.         widespread adoption of a system of

4   Melon strategic plan workshop participants
Investing in Australian horticulture
auStralian goVernment prioritieS                                                              relationShipS and
As part of the Australian Government’s                                                        roleS relating to
commitment to rural research and                   Productivity and Adding Value
development, horticulture industries
                                                   Improve the productivity and
                                                                                              hal programS
can access matching Commonwealth                                                              Horticulture Australia Limited (HAL) is a
                                                   profitability of existing industries and
funding through HAL for all research and                                                      not-for-profit industry owned company.
                                                   support the development of viable
development activities.                                                                       Its role is to manage the expenditure
                                                   new industries.
The Australian Government’s Rural                                                             of funds collected by the Australian
Research and Development Priorities
                                                   Supply Chain and Markets                   Government on behalf of horticulture
aim to foster innovation and guide R&D             Better understand and respond to           industries.
effort in the face of continuing economic,         domestic and international market          HAL invests $85 million annually in
environmental and social change. HAL’s             and consumer requirements and              projects to benefit horticulture industries.
operations are closely aligned with these          improve the flow of such information
priorities.                                        through the whole supply chain,            An Industry Advisory Committee (IAC)
                                                   including to consumers.                    is established for each industry with
This chart shows the percentage of                                                            a statutory levy and annual income
projects in HAL’s melon R&D program                Natural Resource Management                exceeding $150,000. The IAC is a
allocated against each of the Australian                                                      subcommittee of the HAL Board. It
Government priorities for rural research           Support effective management
                                                                                              makes recommendations to HAL on the
and development. Full details across all           of Australia’s natural resources to
                                                                                              expenditure of funds.
industries are available in HAL’s annual           ensure primary industries are both
report at                economically and environmentally           The Industry Representative Body
 Percentage by value of Melon
                                                   sustainable.                               (IRB) for an industry is responsible for
                                                                                              recommending to HAL the establishment
                                                   Climate Variability and
                                                                                              of, and any changes to, statutory levies.
                                                   Climate Change                             The IRB for an industry with a statutory
                                                   Build resilience to climate variability    levy recommends membership of the
                                                   and adapt to and mitigate the effects      IAC to HAL and must demonstrate how
                                                   of climate change.                         the skills required on an IAC are met
                                                                                              by the persons they recommend for
                                                   Biosecurity                                appointment to the committee.
                                                   Protect Australia’s community,             For more information please visit
                                                   primary industries and environment
                                                   from biosecurity threats.

                                                   Innovation Skills
   Productivity and Adding Value (19.5%)           Improve the skills to undertake
   Supply Chain and Markets (16.5%)                research and apply its findings.             In 2008/09 Australian Melon
                                                                                                Association acted as the service
   Natural Resources Management (4.0%)             Technology                                   provider on one project.
   Climate Variability and Climate Change (2.0%)
                                                   Promote the development of new               Full details can be found on page
   Biosecurity (30.0%)                             and existing technologies.                   two of this report.
   Innovation Skills (21.5%)

   Technology (6.5%)

    Across Industry Program
    The melon industry contributes funding towards an across industry program that addresses issues affecting all of horticulture.
    Details of the current program are listed below. A full report of the program can be found at

     Project                                                             Project     Project
                Title                                                                             Organisation                     Contact
     No                                                                  start       completion

     Outcome 1 Enhance the efficiency, transparency, responsiveness and integrity of the supply chain for the total industry to provide clear
     market signals

     AH04007    Pesticide regulation coordinator                         5 Jul 04    1 Jul 09     AKC Consulting                   Kevin Bodnaruk
                                                                                                                                   02 9499 3833

     AH07033    Incident Response Protocol – development and training    21 Apr 08   30 Sep 09    Control Risks                    Julian Heath
                for horticulture                                                                                                   02 9279 0099

     AH08011    A baseline survey of knowledge, attitudes, approaches    31 Jul 08   31 Jan 09    Instinct and Reason              David Donnelly
                and aspirations regarding contamination management                                                                 02 9283 2233

     AH08012    Country of origin labelling research project             1 Oct 08    31 Oct 08    Horticulture Australia Limited   David Chenu
                                                                                                                                   02 8295 2300

     MT07029    Managing pesticide access in horticulture                1 Jul 07    30 Jun 10    AgAware Consulting Pty Ltd       Peter Dal Santo
                                                                                                                                   03 5439 5916

     Outcome 2 Maximise the benefits of horticultural products in the eyes of consumers, influencers and government

     AH07006    Promoting the health advantage of fruit and vegetable    1 Jul 07    30 Jun 10    Horticulture Australia Limited   Chris Rowley
                to increase their consumption                                                                                      02 8901 0329

     Outcome 3 Position horticulture to compete in a globalised environment

     AH07002    HAL market access coordination                           1 Jul 07    30 Jun 09    Stephen Winter & Associates      Stephen Winter
                                                                                                  Pty Ltd                          03 9832 0787

     AH07003    Market access support program                            30 Jun 08   30 Jun 09    Horticulture Australia Limited   Kim James
                                                                                                                                   08 6389 1407

     AH08010    Workshop on quantitative methods applied to              16 Jul 08   30 Sep 08    Australia Crop Genetic           Craig Hardner
                horticultural improvement                                                         Services                         07 3346 9465

     Outcome 4 Achieve long term viability and sustainability for Australian horticulture

     AH07031    Peri-urban horticulture and land use planning:           1 Apr 08    31 Oct 08    GHD                              Luke Jewell
                Literature Review & ‘Tool-kit’                                                                                     02 9241 5655

     AH08002    Horticulture Water Initiative 2008/09                    1 Jul 08    30 Jun 09    Horticulture Australia Limited   Alison Turnbull
                                                                                                                                   02 8295 2300

     AH08003    Analysis of Horticulture’s carbon footprint              15 Jan 09   31 May 09    Horticulture Australia Limited   Alison Turnbull
                                                                                                                                   02 8295 2300

     AH08014    Horticulture industry consultation on Award             17 Nov 08    30 Apr 09    Horticulture Australia Limited   Ravi Hegde
                modernisation                                                                                                      02 8295 2300

Melon Program 2008/09
Project                                                    Levy    Project    Project
          Project title                                                                    Organisation                     Contact
No                                                         or VC   start      completion

MT08016   Protecting pollination for the Australian         VC     1 Nov 08   1 Jul 09     Horticulture Australia Limited   Kim James
          horticulture                                                                                                      08 6389 1407

MT08044   Future surveillance needs for bee biosecurity     VC     5 Jan 09   31 Jul 09    Rural Industries R&D             David Dall
                                                                                           Corporation                      02 6271 4128

MT08047   Implication for surveillance of the host shift    VC     1 Nov 08   31 May 12    CSIRO Entomology                 Paul De Barro
          of Varroa jacobsoni to Apis mellifera                                                                             07 3214 2811

MT08048   Simulation workshop for Varroa mite               VC     5 Jan 09   15 Nov 09    Rural Industries R&D             David Dall
          incursion                                                                        Corporation                      02 6271 4128

VM05005   Assisting the development of the Australian       VC     1 Dec 05   1 Jul 09     Australian Melon Association     Mark Daunt
          melon industry – Phase 2                                                         Inc                              0411 642 708

VM06001   Development of an integrated production           VC     1 Jan 07   31 Dec 09    Applied Horticultural            Gordon Rogers
          system for honeydew melons, rockmelons,                                          Research P/L                     0418 517 777
          seedless watermelons and personal melons

VM06002   Fusarium wilt resistant grafted seedless          VC     1 Oct 06   10 Feb 09    Withcott Seedlings Pty Ltd       Graham Erhart
          watermelon regional trials                                                                                        07 4630 3372

VM08001   Development of melon industry strategic           VC     1 Jan 09   31 Aug 09    Richard Coutts                   Richard Coutts
          plan 2009–2013 and melon industry                                                                                 07 3821 6754
          development needs assessment

VM08004   Support for development of melon industry         VC     1 Dec 08   31 Aug 09    Horticulture Australia Limited   Richard Stephens
          strategic plan 2009–2013 and melon industry                                                                       02 8295 2300
          development needs assessment

    Financial Report
    melon inVeStment Summary
    Year Ended 30 June 2009
                                                                                         Marketing                R&D             Combined
                                                                                          2008/09              2008/09              2008/09

     Funds available 1 July 2008                                                                               80,161                80,161


     Voluntary Contributions Received                                                                         104,816               104,816

     Commonwealth Contributions                                                                                83,422                83,422

     Total Income                                                                             N/A             188,238               188,238

     Budget                                                                                                   351,678               351,678

     Variance to Budget                                                                       N/A            (163,440)             (163,440)


     VC Programs                                                                                              148,342               148,342

     Service Delivery Programs by HAL                                                                          18,502                18,502

     Across Industry Funding                                                                                     1,176                1,176

     Total Investment                                                                         N/A             168,020               168,020

     Budget                                                                                                   351,678               351,678

     Variance to Budget                                                                       N/A             183,658               183,658

     Annual Surplus/Deficit                                                                   N/A              20,218                20,218

     Funds available 30 June 2009                                                             N/A             100,379               100,379

                                                                                                     FOR MORE

      auStralian melon                                                                               INFORMATION CONTACT:

      Mark Daunt (Chair)

      Peter McLennan (Vice Chairman)

      Mike James (Executive Member)
                                                                                                     Dr Kendle Wilkinson
      Leanne McLennan (Secretary/                                                                    Industry Services Manager
                                                                                                     Horticulture Australia Limited (HAL)
                                                                                                     Suite 329, 433 Logan Road
                                                                                                     Stones Corner QLD 4120

                                                                                                     T 07 3394 8208


    Horticulture Australia Limited (HAL) Level 7, 179 Elizabeth Street Sydney NSW 2000
    T 02 8295 2300 F 02 8295 2399

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