New fungicide, foggers, sanitisers feature in 2019 Citrus Tech Forum post-harvest workshops
21 January 2019
A new fungicide to control blue and green mould and sour rot, tech that measures fungicide levels in the packing shed, and the latest in foggers and sanitisers all feature in the 2019 Citrus Technical Forum postharvest workshops.
The 2019 Citrus Technical Forum will be held at the Adelaide Convention Centre on March 6-7.
The program includes:
• An update of the sanitation and fungicide resistance testing survey of packinghouses around Australia
• An introduction to the new postharvest fungicide ‘ChairmanTM’ from Syngenta to control blue and green mould and sour rot
• An update on new foggers and sanitisers
• How packers can use Citrosol technology to improve their business and increase fungicide efficiency
• A further update on the Hort Innovation postharvest project
Dr John Golding, a Senior Research Scientist with NSW DPI who leads the Hort Innovation-funded postharvest project, says it is an exciting time for the postharvest sector around the world due to new developments and research, and the postharvest workshops reflect this.
“Fungicide resistance is a continual issue with the use of postharvest fungicides, and the results of the 2018 Hort Innovation sanitation and fungicide resistance survey will be very interesting for all packers and exporters,” Dr Golding said.
“Following on from this, there is a much bigger focus on hygiene and sanitation. Cleaning coolrooms and ensuring the packinghouse is essential to reduce decay, so the talk from E.E. Muirs on fogging and sanitisers will be of interest to growers.
“We don’t have enough in our armoury for the postharvest control of sour rot, so the launch of ‘ChairmanTM’ will also generate great interest.
“Citrosol is also exciting as they have some innovative new technology to allow growers to measure fungicide levels within in their fungicide dips and fruit without having to send it away. They also have new ‘non-chemical’ treatments to help with decay control”.
The Australian citrus industry is collaborating with a leading citrus postharvest research expert from Valencia in Spain in a bid to further improve quality of fruit for consumers and optimise fungicide use in packinghouse.
Lluís Palou, based at the Postharvest Technology Centre at IVIA in Valencia, Spain, has extensive experience in applied research and extension on postharvest pathology of citrus, and will be a key note speaker.
While in Australia he will also work with Dr Golding and other researchers from the NSW DPI.
Dr Golding said postharvest knowledge and research in Spain was more advanced than in Australia, and that working alongside Prof Palou will provide unique insights, which will benefit the Australian citrus industry.
Prof Palou has recently concentrated on alternative treatments to conventional chemical fungicides for the control of major postharvest diseases of fresh citrus. These treatments have the potential to being alternative postharvest treatments.
“We’re excited to see what Lluís is doing in Spain regarding reduced fungicide use,” Dr Golding said.
“Spain still uses some postharvest chemicals but have increased use of non-fungicide treatments. They reduce decay in fruit and also reduce chemical use.
“Lluís has done a lot of work using non-chemicals and it’s this knowledge and application which we want to learn.
“We won’t be chemical-free tomorrow but if we can manage our postharvest chemicals better to reduce residues, that’s a good thing.”
Dr Golding said the focus in Australia’s postharvest program is “consistently delivering high quality fruit to the consumer to maintain and build opportunity for growers”.
New knowledge and techniques to maintain fruit quality (such as keeping limes green) have been developed through the Hort Innovation postharvest project. An update of this exciting work will be discussed.
“Growers go to a lot of effort to grow good quality fruit and we need to get that fruit to the consumer in peak condition. All these advances will help us do that.”