Bookings are now open for the Queensland integrated pest and disease management (IPDM) Field Day, the third in the national program being held by the AOA as part of the olive levy-funded project: An integrated pest and disease management extension program for the olive industry (OL17001).  

The Queensland event will be held on Saturday, 3 November at the Perseverance Hall, Perseverance, with field activities at the nearby Rash Valley Olives grove at Palm Tree.

Following enthusiastic feedback from the highly successful New South Wales field days at Marulan and Lovedale, the full-day program will value-add the dedicated IPDM activities with sessions on a broad-ranging cross-section of industry relevant topics: product quality, risk management, biosecurity, continuous improvement and technical support – even marketing gets a look-in.  

The project team of experts will once again be led by Dr Robert Spooner-Hart and Dr Len Tesoriero (IPDM specialists), Greg Seymour (Olive Industry Risk and Crisis Management Committee), Peter McFarlane (OliveCare® Administrator and AOA Biosecurity Representative) and Michael Thomsett (Horticultural Consultant and AOA NSW Director), joined by Nutritionist Sarah Gray of the Olive Wellness Institute for the product quality and market development sessions.

Rash Valley Olives owners Roger and Shirley Harrison will host the afternoon IPDM field session, with Dr Robert Spooner-Hart and Dr Len Tesoriero leading attendees through activities including:

  • grove walk and discussion of site-specific issues
  • insect identification
  • disease identification
  • grove management
  • drone exhibition

The field day program proper will then end will an informal BBQ get-together at the Perseverance Hall, providing  an invaluable opportunity for participants to get one-on-one with the experts to discuss issues of relevance to their own groves and businesses.

Connecting growers

The initial field days have gained high praise from attendees for both the program content, and also the opportunity for a “broad catch up with others”.  As Homeleigh Grove owner Peter O’Clery put it:

“Most of us put our oils in various shows and that provides one level of benchmarking. The other is how you’re actually going compared with others in your region – are you travelling roughly on the same course and if not, why not?

“So in addition to research updates and hearing the IPDM experiences of other growers, one particular benefit of the field days is reconnecting with regional growers.  With the demise of regional olive associations, the field days enable us all to re-establish links with other producers in our regions and catch up on where people are and what they are doing.

“There’s also the opportunity to discuss issues pertaining to our specific region – who is who in the small world of processing and/or harvesting, what new support services are available locally, what new equipment we need/have experience with as our harvests have got bigger, etc.”

Details

When: Saturday, 3 November; 8.30am – 5.30pm, followed by informal BBQ (8pm finish).

Where: Perseverance Hall, Perseverance and Rash Valley Olives, Palm Tree, Qld.

Cost: $35 (inc GST) pre-paid via the Eventbrite website. Includes refreshments, lunch, evening BBQ with drinks, hand lens and field day presentation notebook.

Register here or access more information and the full program on the Olivebiz website here.