March/April 2014

Dear primary producers, processors and all stakeholders in the potato industry value chain.

It has been an exceptionally busy two months with the State Election on 15 March. Congratulations to new Ministers in the Labour Government with whom we will work closely to seek the best possible commercial environment for the industry.

Leon Bignell MP is Minister for Agriculture, Food and Fisheries, Forests, Tourism, Recreation and Sport and Racing; Geoff Brock MP becomes Minister for Regional Development and Local Government; and Susan Close MP is Minister for Manufacturing, Innovation and Trade and Minister for the Public Sector.

This issue also includes a message from strategic partner, Elders. This will be a regular feature of the bi-monthly newsletter.


Following the success of the 2012 Potato Industry Conference held in Ballarat, I am pleased to announce the 2014 Potato Industry Conference which will be held in Mount Gambier, South Australia on 10-12 August 2014.

Northern Adelaide Plains Seed Information Day

An information day, followed by a BBQ, will be held in Virginia on Friday 16 May 3.00-6.00pm. Potatoes South Australia will join forces with industry partner Elders, and Nigel Crump of independent seed certification body ViCSPA to provide information on the importance of using certified seed, optimal storage conditions, hygiene and risk management. Download Flyer.

Workforce Development

The Workforce Development Plan for the whole-of-value chain was completed earlier this year by Potatoes South Australia. A key identified challenge is to adequately market vocational opportunities offered by the industry, and horticulture generally. Zerella Fresh has invested in training and career development which is paying dividends. Dowload full article.

Potatoes South Australia / Rabobank Industry Award

Applications for the inaugural “Rabobank Potatoes South Australia 2014 Industry Award”, worth $5300 have now closed. Jointly funded by Potatoes South Australia and Rabobank, it provides a fully-funded placement in the residential Farm Managers Program to be held at Grange Cleveland Winery, Victoria from Monday 16 to Friday 20 June 2014. Read More...

Water Allocation Plan Reviews

Discussions with Government concerning the Water Allocation Plans (WAPs) in the Mallee and Lower Limestone Coast (LLC) Prescribed Wells Areas and the subsequent reduction in water allocation under volumetric conversion are continuing. Read More...

Strategic Planning Workshop

The Association is keen to develop its next two-year Strategic Plan and has contracted Tristan Kitchener, Kitchener Partners, to facilitate a full day workshop in in the next month. Industry stakeholders from across the value chain and the Board Directors will be invited to participate in this forum which aims to identify, agree apon and prioritise key opportunities and actions enabling future growth of the potato industry. There will be indicative timelines and accountabilities and an output document from which the Plan will be developed. This Plan will be owned by industry and is a way to ensure that we are ‘on track’ and investing in what the industry actually wants.

Free Trade Agreements (FTAs)

Following many years of negotiations, Australia has made significant progress with the signing and ratification of FTAs with northern Asian trading partners South Korea and Japan. Read More...

Senate Committee Recommendations-Imports of fresh potatoes from New Zealand

After several delays, Members of the Federal Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Committee who attended the Senate Inquiry on 24 October 2012, announced their recommendations on 31 March 2014. Read More...


HAL Review
A submission (on behalf of the alliance for the purpose of this review, The Australian Potato Council) was lodged in confidence on 28 February 2014.  Potatoes South Australia was a key author. Read More...

Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper
A joint submission was developed by Potatoes South Australia Incorporated, and the Victorian Certified Seed Potato Authority, (ViCSPA).  It was submitted to the Australian Government on 17 April 2014 following a discussion with Taskforce members earlier in the month. Read More...


Not a member of Potatoes South Australia yet?

Online registration and payment is now available on the website or download an application form. Membership has many advantages including reduced registration fees at the upcoming Conference.

Please contact me at any time about your issues or about how we can represent you in a better way.


Elder House
Level 2 27 Currie Street
Adelaide South Australia

M: +61 427 084 319
P: +61 8 8425 4531


Elders Celebrates 175 Year Milestone

Since 1839, Elders has been an integral part of Australia’s rural landscape and this year the iconic business celebrates its 175 year anniversary.

The company recently launched its 175 year anniversary celebrations with a function overlooking Elder Park in Adelaide, and reaffirmed its commitment to supporting farmers and their communities by announcing its return to becoming a pure agribusiness. Elders plans to celebrate the milestone throughout the year, however rather than simply reflecting on its history, Elders will use the opportunity to look forward to what the next 175 years may hold.

In launching Elders’ milestone celebrations, Elders Chairman, Mark Allison, remarked that this year is a great opportunity to celebrate Elders’ rich history and tradition but also touched on what’s next for the iconic company.

“I also think for Elders, this is the start of the ‘new’ Elders as we move to a pure agribusiness focus and we’re looking forward to the next 175 years,” Mr Allison said.

“For the first time in many years, Elders is now operating as a pure agribusiness, and has sharpened its focus on ‘getting the right core business, and getting the core business right’,” he said.

While Elders has been through some challenging times, it’s important to recognise that the knowledge and experience gained over this period, and the quality of its people, is what will strengthen the business moving forward.

Whilst Elders is clearly proud of its long history of supporting rural and regional Australia, its focus is very clearly on a long and profitable future ahead. Elders’ continuing investment in the long term future of the industry through its people is evidence of this.

On going training and investment in staff, which includes extensive branch manager training and Elders’ highly regarded trainee program, means Elders can offer clients access to expert support and advice across a range of product areas including agronomy, farm supplies, livestock, real estate and financial services.
This investment in the future also extends to research and development, such as the establishment of Elders technology demonstration sites, which aim to provide clients with the best market intelligence and data to enable growers to make better farming decisions.

“When Alexander Elder first stepped on to the shores of South Australia back in 1839, I question whether he would have ever imagined the legacy he and his family would leave, or that their business would continue to shape this nation’s agricultural industry 175 years on” Mr Allison said.

“Elders has been synonymous with rural Australia and the agricultural industry for the past 175 years, and I believe our recent focus on returning to a pure agribusiness, and getting our core business right, will position Elders well for many more strong and prosperous years,” he said.

Elders’ commitment to rural Australia is significant and 175 years is a tremendous milestone for the business, but for Elders its real focus is the future.


Copyright © 2013 Potatoes South Australia Inc
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