Fruit Growers Victoria Grower Services Manager, Michael Crisera, and Chairman Mitch McNab attended a media training session at the APAL offices recently and gained some much-needed tips on how best to deal with media enquiries and interviews. It was also an opportunity for all the state associations to get together with APAL and report on each state issues.
In October, Minister for Agriculture Jaala Pulford launched the Labor Government’s Digital Agriculture Strategy in Tatura to ensure our agriculture sector is supported and encourage farm businesses to embrace technology. Ardmona orchardist and FGVL Chairman Mitchell McNab was appointed to represent our region and ensure that the trial meets the needs of farmers.
The GV Emerging Leaders Group continues to meet on a regular basis. Last month saw the Victorian Farmers Federation (VFF) Horticulture Manager Alana Pittard give an update on industrial relation changes relevant to the hort industry.
The dry outlook for season 2018-2019 will mean that growers will have to ensure that they are adequately irrigating and fertigating to get the desired fruit size. The last thing we need is an oversupply of small fruit in any category.
Apple crops and fruit set looked to be strong at the time of writing this article, with many growers busy with their thinning programs. Pears definitely look lighter in all varieties but at the time of writing this article it is still a little early to judge.
Again, labour shortage is a hot topic. Many growers are looking to the Seasonal Worker Programme from the Pacific Islands. FGV is hoping the Federal Government can make this program more affordable and flexible for all of our growers large and small.