Horticulture

Focusing on pear quality

By Country News

Improving pear quality through orchard management practices will be the focus of the next Future Orchards Pear Masterclass in Tatura next month.

The masterclass, run by Apple and Pear Australia Ltd in partnership with Fruit Growers Victoria, will look at orchard practices that can improve quality, covering the newer, more intensive systems, as well as the lower-density systems.

Guest speakers will include visiting Washington University Associate Professor Stefano Musacchi, Agriculture Victoria’s Ian Goodwin and horticultural adviser Marcel Veens.

Assoc Prof Musacchi, who specialises is apples, pears and cherries, has been a researcher of fruit tree physiology and management for a number of years and has been involved in pear rootstock as well as topics relating to orchard management, training systems, fruit quality and saline stress.

Lead researcher of Profitable Pears project based at Tatura, Dr Goodwin will present a number of techniques to improve colour development of red blush pears, while Mr Veens will present on practices to manage fruit rots, focusing on what can be done at orchard level to prevent inoculum and other sources of contamination reaching the pack house.

The Friday, June 1 masterclass will start with presentations at 11.30am, followed by two orchard walks and end at 5.30pm.

Held at Agriculture Victoria’s Tatura office on Ferguson Rd, the day will include lunch and afternoon tea.

■For more information phone APAL technical manager Angus Crawford on 9329 3511.