After two years of less than expected yields, unpredictable weather, and high pest infestations – leaving farmers and researchers scratching their heads over solutions – three key themes have emerged as the 2022 mac harvesting season kicks off:
- Improved research and
- Realistic yield expectations
Commercial mac farmer Luke Dunstone puts it in a nutshell, saying after three years of exponential growth, he is focusing on the detail in his orchards, bedding down best farm management practices, while simultaneously studying the research coming online as the industry matures.
Water supply is probably one of the most critical aspects for a successful macadamia operation.
In this edition we look at recent research in Mpumalanga, which although inconclusive as a direct result of the Covid-19 outbreak and concomitant lockdown, starts an important conversation on the ideal irrigation requirements in a macadamia orchard.
The exponential growth of the macadamia and avo industries in South Africa has experts concerned over the impact of farmers’ increased water usage, on both the environment and rural communities living in the producing regions of KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumalanga.
Also, the content and discussions at both the AmberMacs Expo in February and the SAMAC industry day indicate an agri-sector gaining in both knowledge and world-standard processes.
In an exciting development led by the South African and Australian mac industry, the World Macadamia Organisation (WMO) was launched in September.
In a November online meeting, CEO of Marquis Macadamias and Marquis Marketing Larry McHugh was elected chairman.
McHugh is also a member of the Australian Macadamia Industry Marketing Committee.
He is joined by Myles Osborne and Pieter van der Westhuizen from South Africa, and Michael Russo and Richard Sampson Genest from Australia.
The head of Secretariat of the Nut Processors Association in Kenya, Charles Muigai, and Guatemala’s Thomas Nottebohm, were also elected as board members.
Nottebohm is the general manager of Industria Guatemalteca de Macadamia.
The initial focus of the body is to build demand in three key areas: develop the emerging Indian market, grow frequency of consumption in China, and strengthen positioning demand in the rapidly developing plant-based-diet industry.
The WMO will also support health research, collect insightful industry data, and create alignment in global product standards.
“Never has there been a more critical time than now for the global macadamia industry to come together to share knowledge, ideas, and inspiration. We will be stronger and more resilient working with each other to grow awareness of, and demand for, this incredible product,” McHugh said.
For further information on the WMO go to www.worldmacadamia.com