Grower heads abroad to help industry
BUNBURY avocado grower Dudley Mitchell plans to visit some of the world’s top avocado-growing regions to research canopy management of high-density orchards.
Mr Mitchell’s company Horticultural Consultancy and Management Services manages Avonova Farms, a 50ha avocado orchard at Pemberton producing 800 tonnes of fruit a year.
Mr Mitchell said he had earmarked several avocado orchards at Chile, North America, Israel and New Zealand to visit during his offseason next year.
“My project is about looking at the whole ecosystem of high-density orchards in terms of infrastructure, new technology for canopy management, planting densities and management methods,” he said.
“Chile is probably the world leader in high-density avocado orchards and I want to see what they are doing.”
Mr Mitchell said conventional avocado-growing methods, including high-density planting, often led to a decline in water and land resources.
He said profits across the avocado sector had plateaued with highdensity planting also creating higher production costs during the first few years.
“Good land and water is becoming scarcer to get, and more expensive, so we are really trying to maximise productivity from the land we have,” he said.
Bunbury avocado grower Dudley Mitchell plans to visit successful growing regions around the world to help productivity closer to home.