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Research

The Centre for Organics Research collaborates with Industry stakeholders across the pastoral; cropping; horticulture and viticulture sectors to identify and address key areas of concern in organic agriculture. Get in touch to discuss your research needs.

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Plant Pathology

Rust pustules on undersides of leaves

In-field crop protection trials for control of Blueberry rust

Southern Cross Centre for Organics and NSW DPI are screening a range of crop protection products for efficacy in blueberry rust control with the aim of expanding the array of products available to organic blueberry growers. The project is funded by the Tasmanian Government through the Agricultural Innovation Fund and led by the Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture.

Blueberry farm

Twig dieback in blueberry

COR staff are working alongside NSW DPI and local agronomists to examine the cause of twig die-back in blueberries in northern NSW. Identifying the cause of the dieback is the first step in developing a control measure.

Stump death of tea tree

Stump death of tea tree

Investigations into the causal organisms behind the death of tea tree plants in Northern NSW. This work is supported by a local tea tree grower and the NSW Government through the TechVoucher scheme.

Organic Fertilisers and Crop Nutrition

This research stream focusses on characterisation of traditional organic amendments and development of novel inputs for the organics industry.

soil with garden fork

Agronomic effectiveness of organic fertilisers

Current projects include a long-term field trial comparing crop yield and soil microbial response to manure or synthetic fertilisers and characterisation of struvite as a novel phosphate amendment in subtropical pastures.

Novel sources of compost for the organics industry

In collaboration with Northern Cooperative Meat Company (NCMC) or NSW DPI, current projects aim to divert abattoir waste by developing processes for utilisation in compost and organic soil amendments.

Crop Management Systems

Crop Management Systems

COR staff are working with growers in northern NSW to assess the efficacy of rolled cover crops for improved soil quality and weed control in organic Soybean production. In addition, a project supported by Sugar Research Australia will enhance our understanding of the dynamics of Arbuscular Mycorrhizal colonisation in sugarcane. This will inform improved decision making in crop management.

Nutritional value of organic produce

Nutritional value of organic produce

Current projects are investigating the impact of organic versus conventional fertiliser regimes on bioactive compounds in pigmented rice and secondary metabolite production in broccoli.

Macadamia Nuts on tree

Integrated pest management and Organic pest control

This research stream currently focuses on biological and cultural control of insect pest species in macadamia.