Home' On The Land : April 14th 2011 Contents 10 -- ON THE LAND THURSDAY, April 14, 2011
Dairying in the South-West
An Advertising Feature
Dairy industry benefits from Middle East partnership
THE dairy industry is one
of the farm sectors that will
benefit from a Victorian trade
delegation to the Middle East
The trade delegates from
the Victorian government and
five Victorian meat, dairy and
fine food companies visited
the region to meet with large
retailers, food service and
The visit has already gener-
ated $4.5 million in new trade.
Brian Kearns, the Department
of Primary Industries (DPI)
representative on the tour, told
On The Land the group par-
ticularly targeted Saudi Arabia
and the United Arab Emirates
(UAE). "About $4.5 million of
business was done in the market
at the time, with probably more
trade to come from follow-up,"
Mr Kearns said.
"There is potential for more
penetration by Victorian
companies, with no major trade
barriers for companies able to
comply with import standards
which are being standardised
across the Gulf Cooperation
Council." Mr Kearns, who is DPI
project leader for Middle East
market access, said the Saudis
consume large quantities of
processed cheese, soft cheese
(labneh), cheese spread, drink-
ing yogurt (laban) and fresh
"They have four major super-
market chains and the retail
sector is growing at 10-12 per
cent per annum and new retail
outlets are opening regularly."
He said the long-term trade
prospects with Saudi Arabia
were good, with rapid develop-
ment expected to continue for
TWO new subterranean clover varieties developed
with help from Dairy Australia could help farmers
defeat a major pasture pest.
The discovery could ensure more persistence for
sub-clover, the most popular pasture legume across
low and medium-rainfall areas.
Sub-clover is also the favourite diet of the red-
legged earth mite. During autumn and early winter,
the mites cause serious damage to pasture seedlings
and the only way to curb the destruction has been to
But Phil Nichols, subterranean clover breeder with
the Department of Agriculture and Food Western
Australia (DAFWA), has bred two mite-resistant
sub-clover varieties --- Rosabrook and Bindoon.
Dairy Australia, through the collaborative body
Pastures Australia, has supported the research
overseen by the Grains Research and Development
Corporation and Australian Wool Innovation.
Dr Nichols said the resistant varieties could
mean a more cost-effective way of reducing losses
from mites. It could also curb potential resistance to
widely-used insecticides, he said.
In trials they suffered significantly less damage
at low mite density than other sub clovers, although
damage was similar when mite infestation was high.
Early season performance of the two new varieties
suggests that their resistance is enough to have
a positive effect on pasture productivity in most
Dr Phil Nichols screens sub-clover varieties for red-legged earth mite resistance.
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