Implementing precision agriculture solutions in Australian avocado production systems (AV18002)
What was it all about?
From 2019 to 2022, this project provided the avocado industry with access to new technology to predict yield, look at yield variability and map factors such as disease, to support on-farm decision making.
The outcomes delivered by project have set national and international standards for the adoption of remote sensing and spatial technologies in avocado. Growers have seen the benefits of improved yield forecasting, and their peak industry body Avocados Australia is now better able to gather and review national data.
The work builds on the Multi-scale monitoring tools for managing Australian tree crops initiative, supported by Hort Innovation under the Australian Government’s Rural R&D for Profit program.
Australian Tree Crop Rapid Response map
This project kept the Australian Tree Crop Rapid Response map (available here) and its associated app (available here) updated with information on commercial avocado orchards. This mapping tool was a key output of the multi-scale monitoring tools program. At a top level it’s designed to assist with natural disaster recovery efforts and biosecurity work, but when combined with other innovations such as remote sensing and analytic technologies, it can be used to support on-farm decision making.
The team also delivered a freely available national map of avocado orchards greater than 1 hectare, providing the industry with essential baseline data to better understand industry spread and annual change, while protecting individual farmer data.
The map supports the accurate prediction of fruit yield at harvest to enable forward planning, and the improved accuracy and availability of national production data within growing regions for forward planning and industry response to biosecurity incident management and extreme events.
Crop Count mobile app
During the project, a ‘Crop Count’ mobile app (available here) was successfully developed and trialled. The map provides the avocado industry with up-to-date, high-resolution satellite imagery and other capabilities to support pre-harvest yield forecasts and mapping of tree health and vigour, yield parameters including fruit size, and disease with a focus on phytophthora.
Access the National Map via the Avocados Australia website.
This project was a strategic levy investment in the Hort Innovation Avocado Fund