Horticulture Innovation Australia has been awarded a $5 million grant to help increase Australia’s nut production capacity. The Rural Research and Development for Profit program funding complements a further $9.8 million from Hort Innovation, the Almond Board of Australia and the South Australian, Victoria and NSW governments.
The funding will facilitate a four-year program that will result in higher density, shorter nut trees, with high, quality yields.
Hort Innovation chief executive officer John Lloyd said the project scope involved advanced water and nutrient management techniques, applied through trials on almond and walnut crops.
“It’s a big boost for the Australian nut growers who will benefit from the time and cost efficiencies that arise through this project, and increased sustainability for the industry as a whole,” Mr Lloyd said.
“There will also be positive flow-on effects to local nut consumers and the potential for an increased Australian nut presence in world trade export markets.”
Mr Lloyd said the project will investigate the whole gamut of crop production techniques – from the beginning of the crop planting process, through to production to harvesting with economic modelling and continuous communication to industry.