Currently in Victoria 70% of Asian vegetable growers are of Vietnamese, Cambodian and Chinese origin with the majority of production generated by Vietnamese growers. As a result of an existing RIRDC project ‘Changing Decision Making by LOTE Growers’ (PRJ002391) these growers have made significant progress towards overcoming barriers including cultural differences and communication difficulties. This project will consolidate and build on the significant gains made in that project. Significant advances have been made in the understanding and use of chemicals with the majority of growers completing a Farm Chemical Users course and 30% completing Quality Assurance (QA) training using ‘Freshcare’. In addition, progress has been made introducing growers to Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and improving targeted chemical use. Recent residue testing demonstrated the positive results with zero chemical violations recorded in 52 samples from 15 growers. The existing project has identified a number of issues that need to be addressed including; The need for translated chemical labels Improved record keeping Improved pest and disease management Improved understanding of integrated pest management The need to build the capability of growers to implement QA Better farm management systems Through workshops, the new project would also target better understanding of issues such as the impact of climate change on production and occupational health and safety (OH&S). Overall this project aims to assist growers in the transition from the current dependence on DPI support to a more self reliant grower group.
New and Emerging Plant Industries
Department of Environment Land Water and Planning
The project outcomes: Improved and better targeted chemical use reducing the risk of residue violations and promoting a more sustainable industry. Increased market access due to implementation of QA and better chemical management. Increased adoption of IPM and safer, more targeted chemical use. More sustainable business production practices. Profitable businesses producing price competitive Asian vegetables. These outcomes would be achieved by through meeting the following objectives: Facilitate increased adoption of the “Freshcare” QA program which will increase market opportunities. Increase growers understanding of chemical use and record management. Facilitate the production ad availability of translated labels for key pesticides. Develop growers understanding and implementation of IPM practices, reducing the use of broad spectrum pesticides, better adoption of targeted pesticides and continue the already established trials with native vegetation for beneficial habitat and improved weed control. Increase growers understanding of the importance of farm hygiene. Increase growers understanding of the impacts of climate change and managing the associated issues of climate variability, reduced water availability and extreme events. Improve understanding of OH&S requirements and the importance of farmer and worker health and safety. The project will aim to assist the transition from “case managed” support previously supplied by DPI to a more resilient group able to self manage and provide local leadership via the Asian Vegetable Association. There is also the opportunity to assist with the networking with similar groups in other states.
Project Start Date
Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Project Completion Date
Wednesday, April 30, 2014
Journal Articles From Project
An environmentally sustainable Australia
Adoption of R&D
NEPI-Feasibility studies and industry literature reviews