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News
Robot Harvesting
Interest continues overseas in robot harvesting, with the previously reported Harvest CROO picking machine gaining the backing of more than 20% of the US strawberry industry, including Naturipe, one of the largest strawberry producers in North America.
 
Mechanical Planter
Other technical innovations are being observed across the production system in the US industry, with a new 3-bed mechanical strawberry transplanter being trialed, capable of planting up to 10 acres a day.
Greenhouse Production
Alternatives to open field production is receiving a lot of interest, driven by various factors including the loss of an effective soil fumigant and decreasing availability of adequate labour.  The University of Arizona have compiled an online source of information on hydroponic production.  Further information can be obtained through contacting Industry Development Officers Jen Rowling or Angela Atkinson.
Aussie Consumers want ‘Australian made’
The Australian Made Campaign has welcomed recent research which reveals ‘Australian made’ has moved to the third most looked for statement on product labels, the first 2 both being price related – supporting the evidence that Australian consumers want to buy genuine Aussie produce. 
Resources
Horticulture Innovation Australia has released the Australian Horticulture Statistics Handbook 2014/15, available here
The Handbook provides statistics for 74 horticultural categories over the year ending 30 June 2015. The Handbook is an analysis that reconciles available data on production, international trade, processing volumes and fresh market distribution.
Relevant data to the Australian strawberry industry can be accessed here, with Hort Innovation seeking industry feedback on improving the data for 2015/16.
Events
26 October - Victorian Strawberry Industry's Ladies Dinner - Otree, Lilydale. RSVP to Miffy Gilbert.

31 October - Plastic Waste Challenge - Tour departing from Caboolture Hub, QLD from 7.30am
8 November - Farm Biosecurity 2016, Lilydale Lakeside Campus, VIC
Farm Biosecurity 2016 is a ‘must attend’ event for primary producers and businesses with farm-biosecurity responsibilities. The event will address farm biosecurity in a practical and
informative series of workshops and lectures. Sessions will address emerging threats and how to minimise the likelihood of an outbreak.
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