Gippsland Fruit Growers Meeting and Orchard Walk Held in Conjunction with
The AustSafe Roadshow
Fruit Growers Victoria under the Orchard Action Project – Co Production of Knowledge to Victorian Pome Fruit Orchardists, has held Gippsland Fruit Growers Meeting and Orchard Walk in Conjunction with The AustSafe Roadshow on Tuesday 09th of August 2016 in Yarra Valley.
The first part of the meeting consisted of an orchard walk and compost trial demonstration and was held at Vernview, David and Sue Finger’s Orchard. Finger’s Orchard has always been known for its innovative ideas for improvement in fruit production. One innovative practice, which growers had an opportunity to see at this occasion, was the compost trial organized by Karen Thomas, Regional Landcare Facilitator (Port Phillip & Westernport Catchment Management Authority) . A presentation on trial results and importance of compost fertilization wad given by Declan McDonald, Senior Soil Scientist (SESL Australia).
After the presentation, growers visited the trial site and saw demonstrations on different techniques of checking soil properties. Declan McDonald showed growers how to use a penetrometer and explained trial results.
The second part of the event was held at Rayner’s Orchard. Rayner’s Orchard is a boutique fruit orchard in the Yarra Valley that grows over 350 varieties of fruit including peaches, nectarines, plums, apricots, tamarillo, pomegranate, persimmon, pepino, feijoa, guava, kiwi fruit, dutch medlar and various citrus throughout winter. Besides fruit picking, this orchard provides different activities such as fruit cooking, tractor tour through the orchard and café which serves breakfast, snacks, lunches and drinks. One of the things which makes this orchard different is the fact that all the fruit is produced without the use of pesticides. They also make their own fruit pies and meat pies and roasted stone fruit ice cream, made with at least 70% fresh fruit.
After the dinner, organized by AustSafe Super, growers had an opportunity to attend the AustSafe Roadshow and see an interesting and informative presentation given by Michael Wynne, Regional Manager (AustSafe). AustSafe are the industry super fund for rural and regional Australia. Since 1988, they have been committed to looking after members’ super throughout their working lives, and into retirement. Michael’s presentation was very interesting with different examples from real life. More information about the AustSafe Super Fund can be found on their web site http://www.austsafe.com.au/ .
At the end of event, Gippsland Fruit Growers Association held a meeting where different topics and issues have been discussed.
Fruit Growers Victoria and the Gippsland Fruit Growers Association would like to thank the Finger and Rayner families as well as all the guests who attended the event.