Waste not, want not

Shepparton News - Country News - - FRONT PAGE -

Kerang’s An­dre Henry has be­come the first re­cip­i­ent of the Nuffield Aus­tralian Alumni Schol­ar­ship, this year named in hon­our of Max Jel­bart.

Mr Henry, who is sup­ported by Aus­tralian Pro­cess­ing Tomato Grow­ers, plans to in­ves­ti­gate al­ter­na­tive uses for crop residues, fo­cus­ing par­tic­u­larly on en­gi­neer­ing and po­ten­tial prac­ti­cal on-farm im­ple­men­ta­tions.

‘‘Aus­tralian tomato grow­ers are fac­ing con­tin­u­ally in­creas­ing wage and en­ergy costs and the in­dus­try is al­ready ex­plor­ing al­ter­na­tive mea­sures to try and max­imise on-farm re­turns through yield, for ex­am­ple, in­ject­ing su­per sat­u­rated oxy­gen into ir­ri­ga­tion wa­ter to re­duce root zone hy­poxia,’’ Mr Henry said.

‘‘I be­lieve the is­sues con­fronting our in­dus­try need to be viewed in a dif­fer­ent light, per­haps not just aim­ing to fur­ther en­hance the yields of the pri­mary prod­uct of the crop, but to de­velop a mar­ket and value for the by-prod­ucts of what we al­ready grow.

‘‘It also rep­re­sents an area of po­ten­tial growth when grow­ers and pro­ces­sors are some­what con­strained, in terms of in­creas­ing yield or pro­duc­tion, by a fairly con­sis­tent do­mes­tic mar­ket size.’’

Mr Henry hopes to look at what pro­duc­ers are do­ing around the world to utilise waste and de­ter­mine if there is an op­tion that Bet­ter by-prod­ucts . . . Through his re­search An­dre Henry is hop­ing to in­ves­ti­gate al­ter­na­tive uses for crop residues. could be suc­cess­fully trans­lated to Aus­tralia.

Mr Henry runs Glen­coe Farms Aus­tralia, which sells fresh pro­duce and man­u­fac­tured prod­ucts from his fam­ily op­er­a­tion, in­clud­ing toma­toes, wheat, bar­ley and canola.

He is hop­ing to ex­plore what pro­duc­ers are do­ing around the world to utilise waste, with plans to travel to Swe­den, Ger­many, Nor­way, France, China, Italy and the United States.

Travel plans . . . Nuffield scholar Bisi Oladele is hop­ing to ex­plore how au­to­ma­tion can trans­form the hor­ti­cul­ture in­dus­try.

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