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Completed project

Improving soilborne disease diagnostic capacity for the Australian vegetable industry (VG15009)

Key research provider: South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI)
Publication date: Friday, August 9, 2019

What was it all about?

This investment, which ran from 2015 to 2019, used world-leading DNA technology to provide vegetable growers with tests to assess the risk of soilborne diseases caused by select pathogens prior to planting. This knowledge, when applied with sound disease and soil health management strategies, will contribute to a reduction in the losses from soil-borne diseases. These tests are available through SARDI’s PREDICTA research service, which you can learn more about in this guide produced by the research team.

The focus of this project was on club root, pathogens causing cavity spot, root knot and root lesion nematodes with the purpose of developing testing services of relevance to brassica and carrot growers. The DNA technology was used to establish relationships between levels of specific pathogens at or before planting and the amount of disease that develops in a crop. The information generated will underpin the development of a commercial service, including a guide to growers and their advisors on how to sample and use the service to develop management strategies to minimise the risk of soilborne diseases affecting vegetable crops.


Further information on how DNA testing can assist growers in managing the risk of soilborne diseases in vegetables is available in the guide Testing for soilborne pathogens of vegetables available here.

Read a manual produced by the project team on how PREDICTA can support crop monitoring and management decisions.

Related levy funds

This project was a strategic levy investment in the Hort Innovation Vegetable Fund