AUSTRALIA: Banana prices expected to rise following north Queensland floods

Flood damage on banana farms in north Queensland — Australia’s largest growing area — is expected to lead to reduced supply and a rise in prices.   The full extent of crop losses will not be known until later this week, but farmers who have been able to inspect their plantations estimate tens of thousands […]

INDONESIA: Mangoes, dragon fruit to enter Australian market

Indonesia will soon export mangoes and dragon fruit to Australia, a decision made during the 21st meeting of the Working Group on Agriculture, Food and Forestry Cooperation (WGAFFC) between Australia and Indonesia, held in Melbourne from Feb. 14 to 15.     The Agriculture Ministry’s Agriculture Quarantine Agency head, Banun Harpini, who acted as cochair […]

AUSTRALIA: Melbourne is hosting a festival dedicated to the super smelly durian fruit

The world’s most noxious fruit has long had a reputation amongst backpackers through Southeast Asia for its foul stench and for many trying it out is a rite of passage, albeit often an unpleasant one. The taste is an acquired one, to say the least, but if you find you’re missing it, Melbourne is hosting […]

AUSTRALIA: Costa Group’s not done with smashing avocado growth

Harry Debney, the chief executive of market darling Costa Group, has heard all the gags about smashed avocado and Millennials.   But Tuesday’s share price surge at Costa – up 10 per cent to a record high of $6.88, taking its 12-month gain to 79 per cent – is no joke.     Investors were […]

AUSTRALIA: Importing ‘mango madness’

Queensland mango farmers are “scratching their heads” over a trade deal that will see the first trays of mangoes arrive from Indonesia, putting them in direct competition with the local harvest.   Indonesian media are reporting the country will soon begin exporting mangoes and dragon fruit to Australia, “a decision made during the 21st meeting […]

AUSTRALIA: Harvesting lychees for Lunar New Year on NSW mid north coast farm

People from Sydney’s Vietnamese community view picking lychees as a way for their urban-raised children to gain an understanding of farm life and food production.   For more than 20 years busloads of predominately Vietnamese and some Chinese have descended on Ted and Elizabeth Knoblock’s lychee farm just south of Coffs Harbour on the New […]

VIETNAM: Fruits of labor

After nine years of negotiations, good news came to Vietnam’s agriculture sector in September when dragon fruit hit shelves in Australia, making the country the first to be licensed to export fresh dragon fruit to the stringent market.   It represented a milestone in local dragon fruit conquering the world. The 600 boxes of about […]

AUSTRALIA: Avocado prices stable

A Manjimup avocado export company representative has spoken out against reports predicting a drop in avocado prices, saying the price would likely stay stable throughout summer. Advanced Packing and Marketing Services managing director Jennie Franceschi said she was surprised by comments from former Avocados Australia CEO Antony Allen. Mrs Franceschi said it was likely that […]

AUSTRALIA: New trial to investigate if mangosteen can improve schizophrenia symptoms

Geelong researchers are calling on people with schizophrenia to take part in an innovative trial investigating whether a tropical fruit extract can improve symptoms.   The trial uses the rind of the mangosteen, consumed in a capsule form, to compliment existing conventional medications in the hope of achieving full, functional recovery.   The trail, which […]

AUSTRALIA: GM banana shows promise against deadly fungus strain

A field trial in Australia has shown that genetically modified banana trees can resist the deadly fungus that causes Panama disease, which has devastated banana crops in Asia, Africa, and Australia and is a major threat for banana growers in the Americas. The transgenic plants might reach some farmers in as few as 5 years, […]

AUSTRALIA: Mango fiesta makes return

Contagious mango fever is heavy in the air as Broome residents and visitors enjoy an extra-large juicy yellow slice of the Broome Mango Festival later this month.     The November 23-26 fruit-worshipping fiesta is organised by the Lions Club of Broome, with attendees relishing the chance to attend music events, try mango products and […]

AUSTRALIA: Genetic modification may save USD12bn banana industry

A multibillion-dollar banana industry at risk of a deadly disease could be saved by genetic modification that created a line of bananas resistant to Fusarium wilt tropical race 4, also known as Panama disease. Researchers at Queensland University of Technology genetically modified Cavendish bananas using a gene found in a south-east Asian banana subspecies that […]