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Historical document

Developing a Best Management Practices Guideline for the Australian banana industry (BA11006)

Key research provider: The Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Qld
Publication date: September, 2013

This is a final research report from Hort Innovation’s historical archives. Please note that as these reports may date back as far as the 1990s, the content and recommendations within them may be superseded by more recent research.

What was it all about?

Bananas at the time were being produced in some of the most ecologically sensitive and important areas of Australia. Many production areas were surrounded by world renowned natural wonders and World Heritage listed attractions. While sustainable production was important for these eco systems, the issue extended beyond impacts on surrounding environments and future farming generations and the productivity of the land they inherit also required consideration.

The Australian banana industry’s Banana Best Management Practices (BMP) Environmental Guideline was released in September 2013. The development of the Banana (BMP) was a priority project by the Australian banana industry. The primary function of the Banana BMP was to provide a system for banana growers to benchmark their farming activities against an industry standard and provide practical information to assist growers in adopting best practice. It demonstrated to the broader community the commitment of banana producers to responsibly manage the natural resources and environment within which they farmed.

The content for the Banana BMP was developed in participation with banana growers representing the major production regions, contributing their knowledge and experience.

This participatory approach ensured only tried, tested and practical information was included. Technical specialists were then consulted to validate the practices and ensure rigorous research underpinned the information.

The Banana BMP was designed to be a valuable resource for all banana farming businesses, whether they were businesses with existing environmental management systems or businesses assessing their environmental performance for the first time.

The layout of the document reflected the Freshcare Environmental Code, however businesses audited under other standards found value in the resource. Essentially Freshcare’s Environmental Code provided the framework and evidence based system for auditing purposes, while the Banana BMP would provide the practical information and method to assess actual farming practices.

Version 1 of the Banana BMP was released in September 2013 and was available to all banana producers in either a hardcopy or online format. At the time of this report being published, 20 per cent of the banana industry, on a hectare basis, had commenced using the Banana BMP online system.


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Funding statement:
This project was funded by Hort Innovation (then Horticulture Australia Limited) with the voluntary financial support of the banana industry.

Copyright © Horticulture Innovation Australia Limited 2013. The Final Research Report (in part or as whole) cannot be reproduced, published, communicated or adapted without the prior written consent of Hort Innovation (except as may be permitted under the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth)).