Grower’s e-bulletin – 18 May, 2022


ABGC Federal Election priorities

Minimise your carbon footprint

NQ mini roadshows to focus on pest and disease management

Funding for land conservation

Banana Women’s Network revitalised 

ABGC Federal Election priorities

The Australian Banana Growers’ Council has outlined the industry’s priorities to key MPs ahead of the Federal Election on Saturday.

In the letter, the ABGC focussed on:

  • Issue: Low returns, escalating farm input costs and COVID-driven changes to buying habits have put a significant financial and mental strain on growers.

Request: That the incoming Government actively consider any avenue that could provide more financial security for banana growers. 

  • Issue: Workforce shortages remain a challenge in rural and regional Australia. 

Request: That the incoming Government support or improve existing policies to enable banana growers to access farm workers. 

  • Issue: Currently only the R&D levy (compulsory for growers) is matched dollar-for-dollar by the federal government, with the rationale being that it is in the public interest. ABGC believes the same applies to biosecurity (also a compulsory levy). 

Request: That the incoming Government provide matching funds to plant biosecurity levies. 

  • Issue: Feral pigs coming out of National Park land in Tully continue to pose an environmental and biosecurity threat to growers (and broader region) despite ABGC/grower control efforts.

Request: That the incoming Government provides $300,000 to support the feral pig management program on both environmental and economic grounds. 

  • Issue: Serious leaf diseases, including black Sigatoka, are currently present on five islands in the Torres Strait. 

Request: The incoming Government provides $400,000 for a three-year project to continue to control the spread of black Sigatoka in the Torres Strait. 

ABGC members who wish to find out more detail about these election priorities and requests should call the ABGC office on 07 3278 4786 or send an email to


Minimise your carbon footprint

Growers – do you want to minimise your carbon footprint? Are you an adopter of renewable energy (wind, solar or battery storage) or keen to explore the market?

Join the ABGC as we look to embark on an exciting new initiative with Maximum Energy for a sustainable energy co-operative.

First – we need your input. 

Please complete a survey so the ABGC can better understand your attitude to energy sharing and the industry’s energy needs.

The survey will take about 6 minutes to complete.

The ABGC will use the information to investigate the support for and feasibility of a sustainable energy co-operative.

To complete the survey, click here

FNQ mini roadshows to focus on pest and disease management 

The latest round of mini roadshows for Far North Queensland is set for June. 

This series will focus on integrated pest and disease management in banana production and will feature presentations on bunch pests, yellow Sigatoka and mites.

The sessions will include current best practice to reduce chemical resistance and discuss new research and discussion on the future of bunch pest management, considering the possible deregistration of products containing chlorpyrifos. 

The roadshows will run from 1pm to 4pm, with a light lunch at 12.30pm. 

  • Tully – Thursday, 16 June – Tully and Districts Senior Citizens Hall, 19 Blackman St, Tully
  • Innisfail – Friday, 17 June – Brothers Leagues Club, Cnr Campbell & Ernest St, Innisfail 
  • Mareeba – Wednesday 22 June – Mareeba Soccer Club, Borzi Park, Chewko Rd, Mareeba

To RSVP contact Tegan Kukulies at or 0459 846 053

These extension events are funded as part of the National Banana Development and Extension Program (BA19004). This project is funded by Hort Innovation, using the Hort Innovation banana research and development levy, co-investment from the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries and contributions from the Australian Government. Hort Innovation is the grower-owned, not-for-profit research and development corporation for Australian horticulture.

Funding for land conservation

Round 9 of NatureAssist funding is open.

The Queensland Government program provides funding to landholders to deliver projects or activities that protect and enhance the significant natural and cultural values of their land.

Landholders must be willing to enter into a conservation agreement.

Expressions of interest close on Friday (20 May).

Applications can be made here

Banana Women’s Network revitalised 

The Banana Women’s Network has been revitalised, with 22 women gathering at Mission Beach at the weekend to reconnect.

The network provides a platform for socialising and connection with other women in the industry along with information to enhance their roles on farms and in the region. 

Growers from Innisfail, Tully and surrounds attended a dinner at Buko, Mission Beach, and provided input about what future topics and events they’d like to see the network get involved in.

Join the Facebook group or call 0419 602 864 for more information.