Gympie's best macadamia growers to be honoured
THE Gympie macadamia industry will gather tomorrow for an important industry 'MacGroup' event at a local orchard.
More than 50 local macadamia growers and industry representatives will attend the industry event, which will focus on key industry issues and trends and showcase the latest on-farm innovation and scientific research.
The region's best growers will also be honoured when representatives from the peak industry body, the Australian Macadamia Society, announce the winners of the AMS Awards of Excellence.
The University of Queensland's Femi Akinsanmi will present on tree physiology and root system health and development, and industry experts will provide the latest updates on pest and disease management, and innovative grower practices, including how more than 20 local growers are boosting their productivity and profitability while helping protect the Great Barrier Reef.
One of the highlights of the MacGroup will be the tree-shaking demonstration using a tractor-mounted machine that shakes the nuts out of the tree.
"Tree shakers have typically been used for almond, walnut and pecan orchards, but now some of our most innovative macadamia growers are trialling tree shaking as a new way to improve pest control and decrease the harvesting period," says the AMS industry development manager Leoni Kojetin.
The June/July MacGroups are taking place in all major growing regions this week and next week.
The MacGroup events are part of the Australian macadamia industry's innovation and adoption program. The program is funded by Hort Innovation using the macadamia industry levy and funds from the Australian government. Hort Innovation is the grower-owned, not-for-profit research and development corporation for Australian horticulture.