Tatura and Mildura SmartFarms
The Tatura SmartFarm in the Goulburn Valley is Australia’s leading horticulture SmartFarm research facility effectively linked to the Mildura SmartFarm, enabling research and innovation to deliver high-quality fruit from orchard to export market. They develop, use and demonstrate new applications of agricultural technology to achieve increases in marketable yield, product value and production efficiency in pears, apples, stonefruit and almonds. They also evaluate:
- novel integrated pest and disease management strategies
- high-density almond production
- new rootstocks and cultivars
- new irrigation and sensor technology.
These SmartFarms incorporate:
- the world’s first Sundial multi-directional experimental orchard, which is highly sensorised and includes orchard design and training systems for stonefruit and pomefruit
- experimental pear and stonefruit orchards which, combined with the Sundial orchard, enable new understandings on how orchard design impacts production efficiencies, labour efficiencies, resilience to extreme climatic events, and yield and quality of fruit
- a Fruit Analytics facility that enables individual fruit from the experimental orchard to be measured for quality attributes including colour, size and maturity
- a Fruit Export Dynamics facility that focuses on smart fruit management to maintain fruit quality through the supply chain
- an insect-rearing facility to support integrated pest management outcomes.
This will help Victorian growers to meet the exacting quality expectations of consumers in domestic and export markets.