15 May 2020

Brought to you by  Australian & New Zealand Olivegrower & Processor   www.olivebiz.com.au
Today's Top Story
A tractor prepares a paddock in Narromine for sowing, removing umbrella grass. (Supplied: Sam Jeffery).

Australian farmers hoping to make the most of this year's rain are facing a new struggle caused by COVID-19. Chemicals and fertilisers have been difficult to obtain due to major issues with the international supply chain.

The new conditions are described as a 'wake-up call' for how Australia's agricultural supplies are sourced and manufactured – and may also lead to an increased adoption of reduced-chemical IPDM practices.

There will be no Australian-grown rice on supermarket shelves by December according to the company that produces 98% of the domestic rice harvest. But ASX-listed SunRice said if Governments intervened in the water market, subsidised the cost of water, or changed the Murray-Darling Basin Plan so that water intended to go to the environment can instead be used to grow rice, it would guarantee Australian-grown rice returned to supermarket shelves in April 2021.

Plate it. Don’t plant it.
The Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment is reminding all Australians about the biosecurity risks of planting food products that are intended for eating. We’re all responsible for helping to prevent the introduction of exotic pests and diseases into Australia, and this is apparently one way that is happening.
Plant-based goods are imported into Australia for a variety of purposes and end uses, and import conditions depend on this. Goods for growing, such as seeds, have a higher risk of carrying pests and diseases and therefore face much tighter import conditions to make sure that they are safe.
The message is clear: purchased fresh, dried or preserved foods (including spices and seeds) are for plating and eating, not for planting in your garden.

Find out more here and let’s all help spread the word.
NSW DPI: Update on olive oil sensory analysis

In line with COVID-19 requirements, NSW Department of Primary Industries has lifted suspension of olive oil sensory analysis, with the service recommencing from 25 May 2020.
Manager Belinda Taylor said the NSW DPI remains committed to delivering high-standard testing services to its customers through its nationally and internationally accredited laboratories. 
Anyone requiring further information or clarification can contact Belinda via wagga.labs@dpi.nsw.gov.au or 02 6938 1688.
Theo and Matt are both SELLING OLIVE EQUIPMENT and they’re letting olive producers know through the OliveBiz Classifieds
Your circumstances have changed and you’ve got equipment you no longer need but there’s undoubtedly another producer out there for whom it would be ideal. Let them know about it through the Olivebiz Classifieds – THE intra-industry way to sell, buy and source. If you’ve got something industry-related to sell, our online Classifieds service is an easy and inexpensive solution to advertise your unwanted equipment, extra oil or even your grove – like Theo, who has production and warehouse equipment for sale, and Matt, who’s selling a large OFM olive sorting machine. And if there’s something you’re looking for, it’s the ideal way to get the message out loud and clear to your peers and industry.
Olivebiz Classifieds cost just $40 for AOA members ($100 for non-members), including a text ad and link through to either your web page or images hosted on our site. And you don’t need to be a tech-head: just send us your info and we’ll post it up for you.
Olivebiz Classifieds are online now at www.olivebiz.com.au/classifieds. To arrange a listing, contact Gerri at editor@olivegrower.com.au.
SA: New website connects workers to seasonal jobs
Seasonal Jobs SA is a new website that will help connect seasonal workers to essential agricultural jobs in South Australia, particularly important while COVID-19 restrictions are limiting the numbers of travellers taking up these roles.
Seasonal Jobs SA will showcase seasonal roles in agriculture as they become available, including the skills and training required, where the jobs are and how to apply. Employer listings on the job board are free. The dedicated COVID-19 hub also includes important information about workplace restrictions, safety, hygiene and support.
More information here.
Virtual Meet the Buyer: Singapore Business Matching
Export-ready businesses can access new markets from their premises via FIAL’s Virtual Meet the Buyer event, with the next instalment matching exporters with buyers from Singapore.
Introduced following the postponement of the FHA-Food & Beverage trade show, this event enables Australian food exporters to attend a video conference with a buyer interested in their products. Healthy and innovative foods are of particular interest, with olive oil among the listed product categories.
The event will be held on Friday, 5 June via ZOOM, exporters will have a 15 minute, 1:1 video meeting with buyers from leading retailers and distributors in Singapore. Your details will be sent to relevant buyers for review and you will be notified if successful in securing an appointment.
Expressions of interest close on 18 May – more information and register here.
Vic: Business Resilience Program

The Melbourne Innovation Centre has launched a Business Resilience Program to assist Victorian SMEs affected by COVID-19. Support includes free access to virtual mentoring, online workshops and resources.  
To be eligible for free mentoring through this program, you must be a Victorian business with an active ABN, less than 20 employees, and be for-profit. 
More information here.
AOA Productivity and Profitability Webinar Series - Register now for Webinar 3
The third in the series of AOA Productivity and Profitability Webinars happens next Tuesday, 19 May, providing an update on irrigation trials undertaken as part of the remote sensing project, along with the associated oil accumulation results. Presenters include Dr James Brinkhoff, University of New England and Alex Schultz, NSW DPI.
Content includes:
  • Rationale for the trial and the technologies being assessed 
  • Layout and implementation of trials 
  • Results 1 - high frequency sensor-based indicators of water stress 
  • Results 2 - high resolution spatial remote sensing detection of water stress  
  • Results 3 - yield and oil content results.
The webinar will be in Zoom meeting format and attendees will have the opportunity to ask questions of the presenters. 
Details: Tuesday, 19 May 2020, 12:30-13:30 AEST – Free. Registrations close 18 May 4PM AEST
 - register here.
And then stand-by for the Online Marketing series – starts 26 May!
The second AOA webinar series in the will cover key elements and insights for a successful on-line marketing business, guided by popular 2019 National Conference presenter Lauren Hamilton of Digital Narrative.
Designed for those looking to set up an online presence and/or wanting to sharpen their online marketing skills, this series is especially timely for those who have had to adapt their sales models due to the COVID-19 induced collapse of food service and farmers markets around the country.
The three-part webinar series will cover the following topics:
26 May - Webinar 1: How to establish an online business
2 June - Webinar 2: How to drive online sales using free digital marketing
9 June - Webinar 3: How to grow your online business using paid digital marketing
Don’t miss out on this FREE opportunity to get your digital marketing sorted. Add the dates to your diary now, then look out for the notices being emailed to all levy payers a week before each webinar is scheduled and register ASAP. 

These webinars are part of the Olive levy project Australian olive industry communications and extension program (OL18000), funded by Hort Innovation, using the Hort Innovation olive research and development levy, co-investment from the Australian Olive Association and contributions from the Australian Government.
Golden Olive Awards
Run by Olive Producers North East Victoria (OPNEV), the 2020 Australian Golden Olive Awards is going ahead! The first competition of the season, the event provides entrants with lab results which can then be used for entry to other competitions and for quality submission to the AOA – and a real medal for winners!
Organiser Rob Whyte said that, combined with discounted rates for oil testing, the competition provides plenty of incentive for small producers to enter and obtain valuable feedback on their oil.
Key dates are:
12 June - closing date for submission of EOI to enter
6 July - closing date for submission of product
14 August - chemistry results supplied to entrants
29 August - Golden Olives Awards announced.
For information and updates, contact Rob and Melanie at shop@gooramaddaolives.com.au.
New Zealand

A haul of gold medals by Kiwi olive oils in a prestigious international competition shows the industry is 'punching above its weight'. All five olive oils entered in the 2020 New York International Olive Oil Competition won gold, something Olives New Zealand says is a massive confidence booster for growers here.

The success is also being celebrated at a regional level …
Charles and Kay Chinnaiyah’s olive oil won gold in the prestigious New York International Olive Oil Competition. Photo/Karen Coltman.

Olive oil produced in Featherston has won gold on the international stage. Olea Estate’s 2019 Picual virgin olive oil was one of 87 to be certified ‘gold’ at the 2020 New York International Olive Oil Competition.

The population's priorities will shift in a post-coronavirus world, demanding ethical and sustainable production from farmers and distributors in the years ahead.

And here’s some more interesting discussion on the topic …

13-May-2020 By Katy Askew

New research from insight provider IGD examines how to ‘shift’ consumers to healthy, sustainable diets. FoodNavigator spoke to Hannah Pearse, IGD’s head of nutrition and scientific affairs, to learn more.

06-May-2020 By Katy Askew

The coronavirus pandemic has led to surging demand for organic and sustainable foods, according to a new report. Why is the organic sector getting a ‘coronavirus boost’ and will gains be sustained in the face of an economic downturn?

The European Union (EU) is moving forward with new measures to promote the use of reclaimed water for agricultural irrigation. The aim of the new EU regulation is to improve water availability and quality for the irrigation of farmland through the use of treated urban wastewater. The initiative addresses the risk of drought-like conditions increasing pressure on water resources due to new, climate-change fueled weather patterns.

Olives, a savory Mediterranean fruit, are often cured and eaten whole as a tangy, salty snack. Many people also enjoy them on pizzas and salads or processed into oil or tapenade. They’re known for being rich in beneficial fats and are included in the popular Mediterranean diet, so you may wonder whether olives can help you lose weight. 

Like anything, that probably depends on how many you eat … but there’s some good information for consumers about the health benefits of eating table olives.
Friday Olive Extracts – send us YOUR news
With 2020 now well underway Friday Olive Extracts  (FOE) continues to bring all the latest industry news and events to your Inbox every week. THE place to share olive industry news, event details and reminders, our industry e-newsletter keeps growing in popularity and we now have nearly 4000 subscribers across the globe. If you’re not one of them,  you can sign up here.
And please remember that FOE is YOUR e-newsletter, so we’re keen to receive your news and help spread the word. Just email your information to Editor Gerri Nelligan at  editor@olivegrower.com.au - it’s free, and the best way to reach your fellow industry members!

Spanish farmers and growers have had to contend with sales prices well below the production costs for two seasons in a row. COAG is now demanding an official investigation on prices that have shrunk 37 percent since March 2018.

Argentina has announced that it will withdraw from ongoing trade negotiations being undertaken by the Mercosur, a trading bloc composed of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay.
Pablo Radice for Olive Oil Times.

Dropping demand for table olives and olive oil in Brazil combined with low prices for both mean many producers are having problems remaining solvent. Some are getting emergency loans while others cut costs.
What's On


18-10 May
EVOO-IOOC – Palmi/Calabria, Italy

19 May
AOA Webinar Series, Event #3- Australia

20 May
Entries close, Olive Japan 2020 International EVOO Competition – Tokyo, Japan

26 May
AOA Webinar Series, Event #4 - Australia

1 June 
Deadline for entries, 15th China International Olive Oil Competition – Beijing, China

2 June
AOA Webinar Series, Event #5 - Australia

9 June
AOA Webinar Series, Event #6 - Australia

12 June
Closing date for entry EOI, Golden Olive Awards – Vic, Australia

20 June 20
Winners announced, Los Angeles International Extra Virgin Olive Oil Competition – LA, USA

1 July
Entries open, 2020 Australian International Olive Awards

6 July
Closing date for samples, Golden Olive Awards – Vic, Australia

29 August
Results announced, Golden Olive Awards – Vic, Australia

September TBA
World Team Tasting Championship

4 September
Entries close, 2020 Australian International Olive Awards

11 September 
Entries close, 2020 Hunter Olive Show – Hunter Valley, NSW

5 October
Results emailed to entrants, 2020 Australian International Olive Awards

16-18 October
AOA National Olive Conference & Trade Exhibition – Devonport, TAS

22 October
Awards Presentation, 2020 Hunter Olive Show – Hunter Valley, NSW


16-17 February
evokeAG. – Perth, WA

23-25 March
Soil CRC Participants Conference

7-9 June 
Hort Connections 2021 – Brisbane, Qld

To include your event, or update your existing event details, email FOE editor Gerri Nelligan at  editor@olivegrower.com.au
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