A newly established specialist reference group, comprising a range of scientific experts, will provide advice on future research and development projects to advance Australia's citrus industry.
Established under Horticulture Australia Limited's (HAL) constitution, the five member reference group will provide direct advice on R&D project proposals being presented to the citrus Industry Advisory Committee (IAC), the group responsible for making investment recommendations to HAL on behalf of the citrus industry.
Brad Wells, Project Manager for HAL and member of the new reference group, said each year between 20 and 30 new research and development project proposals are submitted for assessment.
'Independent specialist knowledge is required to assess the scientific rigour of the project proposals and provide technical advice to the IAC and subsequently HAL on the most appropriate R&D investments for the citrus industry,' said Brad.
'Finding the right mix of experts was important as our R&D proposals can relate to anything from biosecurity to entomology, pathology and market access. From the 15 expressions of interest, we narrowed the group down, selecting experts from both the private and public sectors.'
Fellow members of the new reference group, which include entomologist Dr Phil Taylor, independent consultant Dr Ron Hutton, NSW DPI citrus researcher Shane Hetherington and market development expert Andrew Harty, will meet for the first time this month.