Autumn 2016

Dear primary producers, processors and all stakeholders in the Potato Industry in South Australia, Australia and internationally. 

Potatoes South Australia appoints new Director to Board

Mr Ian Simpson has been appointed to the Board of Potatoes South Australia. Ian is Business Manager at AgTech Agriculture Pty Ltd, a division of Oakville Produce, one of Australia’s longest-standing vertically-integrated fresh produce organisations, proudly supplying potatoes and onions.
Independent Chair, Brian Cunningham and the Directors are delighted to welcome Ian and the skills and knowledge he brings to this position.

Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation (RIRDC) 2016 SA Rural Women’s Award

On 22 February, Minister for Agriculture, Mr Leon Bignell MP, announced that I was the 2016 winner of the RIRDC Rural Women’s Award. 
The other South Australian finalists were Karen Holder, proprietor/manager blue swimmer crab fishing business (Port Adelaide), Linda Eldredge, agri-manager, consultant and lecturer in agribusiness (Clare) and Louisa Mondello, company secretary and proprietor Gawler River Produce (Wards Belt).  It was very exciting to have two finalists from the potato industry.
Principal sponsors of the Award are Westpac Agribusiness and PIRSA.
My project concerns the transformation of food waste, particularly pre-farm gate horticultural product, which is estimated to cost the Australian economy $1.8 billion annually.  The $10,000 bursary will enable an international study tour to Scandinavia and the United Kingdom.
I am very grateful for the support of my referees, Hon Rob Kerin, Chair PPSA and Dr John Carragher, Director University of Adelaide FOODPlus Research Centre. 
RIRDC sponsors the Rural Woman of the Year awards, which recognise innovation and emerging leadership in the agriculture sector, with the National RIRDC Rural Women’s Award to be held this August.
Pictured above:  Minister Leon Bignell and Ms Robbie Davis (Image credit: RIRDC)

Horticulture Award Review and Union Claims

Potatoes South Australia continues to collaborate with representative state and national associations and bodies in challenging a move by the Unions to separate the final processing (washing/packing) of horticultural product from the Horticulture Award and place all activities under a different Award with much higher labour rates. 

We believe that this represents an attack on Primary Producers and Value Chain Service Providers and will have serious consequences for the viability of many businesses. 

The Awards are currently under review and an application to the Fair Work Commission to vary the coverage clause of the Horticulture Award 2010 is now underway.  Read More...

Increasing Productivity

The Association has several projects ‘in the pipeline’.
  • Innovative Nutrient Management for the Australian Potato Industry
  • PIRSA’S Advanced Food Manufacturing Grants (AFMG) - ‘Waste’ Potato Transformation and Stem Project
  • Increasing Demand in the Fresh Sector
  • SARMS Transforming Riverland Food Loss and Industry Waste Into Profit
To find out more Click here... 

Other News

Loxton Centre upgrade begins
The Global picture
Value of South Australian horticulture hits $1billion
More students entering University to study Agriculture

Zebra Chips still off the menu in Australia 


PMA Fresh Connections 2016 Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre 17-19 May
PMA Fresh Connections 2016, is the premier networking, educational and business event for the entire fresh fruit, vegetable and floral industries of Australia and New Zealand.
The bright and dynamic three-day format allows you to mix-and-match the events and topics to best suit your company and your staff. Website. 

Agribusiness Outlook Australia 2016 Aerial UTS Function Centre Sydney 24-26 May
Capturing the opportunities of the global dining boom for Australian agribusiness
Speakers include: 
  • Don Taylor, Chairman, Graincorp
  • Barry Irvin, Executive Chairman, Bega Cheese
  • Philippa Dawson, General Manager, Trade, Austrade
  • Mark Field, Head of Product Technology, Coles
  • Jan Davis, Chief Executive Officer, Agribusiness Association of Australia
  • Darren De Bortoli, Managing Director, De Bortoli Wines
See website for more information.

Current Grants Available

Churchill Fellowship
The Winston Churchill Memorial Trust of Australia, now celebrating its 50th anniversary, is urging rural and regional South Australians to submit an application for a Churchill Fellowship.
As many as twelve South Australians receive a Fellowship every year. Worth an average of $25,000 each, they allow recipients to meet with, observe and learn from their peers and global experts anywhere in the world, and to establish valuable international networks.  This is a fabulous opportunity.
Potatoes South Australia Member, Doug Marks, is a Churchill Fellow (2000) and is happy for you to contact him on 0428398790 or email to discuss his experiences.
National Stronger Regions Fund 
Next Generation Manufacturing Investment Programme 
Current Grants Available-Enterprise specific


Industry Notices
  • A flyer, “ Horticultural Growers: Your Business Future and Viability are under Attack” and AiG’s Union Rights of Entry were distributed to a national database on 10 February
  • A survey via SurveyMonkey was distributed on 16 February 2016
  • “Let’s think about food”, Fairfax Media-Smart Farmer, February 2016.  See link.
  • “New research to help potato growers and industry”, FreshPlaza, 3 February 2016. See link. 
  • “Research in Australia to help potato growers and industry”, PotatoPro, 4 February 2016. See link.
  • “Robbie Davis named 2016 Rural Woman of the Year”, FreshPlaza, 24 February 2016. See link.
  •  RIRDC Rural Women’s Award Winner announced, Stock Journal, 24 February 2016. See link. 
  • Inside South Australia, 23 February 2016. See link.
  • Adelaide Now, 23 February 2106. See link.
  • ABC Country Hour, Cassie Hough, 22 February 2016. See link.
  • The Murray Valley Standard. See link.

Ode to the Potato!

Click on the link to read this article. 

Did you know that 95% of potatoes grown in South Australia are grown by members of Potatoes South Australia?

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

Newsletter Contents

Corporate Partners


This Issue's Member Profile



Agrichem is a long established Australian manufacturer with almost thirty years’ experience providing liquid nutrition innovation to Australian producers.
Our team of sales and technical specialists are focused on delivering this innovation through a focus on improved yields for producers. Agrichem’s commercial team is dedicated to ensuring profitable outcomes for our customers by providing the best products, services and programs to succeed in today’s globally competitive market.
Jill Ramsey (Agrichem Area Manager - South Australia) is currently overseeing a number of trials around the State to demonstrate the benefits of our niche products.
Having grown up in the Mid North of the State, Jill has a long history in the rural industry working in various roles supporting producers.  Jill has been part of the Agrichem Team for just over twelve months and; with her commercial experience; is working to build strong relationships with producers by introducing new innovative systems to improve quality, yield and profitability.
Jill’s goal is to ensure producers and retailers have the best products and technical service to be profitable in the current market.
Agrichem is looking forward to a long term involvement with members of Potatoes South Australia. Our reputation has been built on providing superior product quality and service which has earned us the status as one of the world’s leading manufacturers and suppliers of Specialty Liquid Fertilisers, Water Soluble Fertilisers, Plant Heath Formulas and Adjuvants.
If you would like further information on how Agrichem can assist you, please contact:-

Jill Ramsey
Area Manager – South Australia
Mobile: 0417 632 090



Level 1, 145 South Terrace
Adelaide South Australia

M: +61 427 084 319
P: +61 8 7221 1960




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