Maroochy research facility

Site Details

Research facility nameMaroochy Research Facility
Research facility address47 Mayers Road, Nambour QLD 4560
Telephone+61 7 5381 1300
Coordinates (GPS at office)26°38'28''S, 152°56'17''E
ClimateAverage maximum temperature 25.8°C
Average minimum temperature 14.0°C
Mean annual rainfall 1712mm
TopographyGently sloping hillside farmland surrounded by native vegetation areas that provide a buffer from adjoining housing estates and peri-urban areas.
Remnant rainforest is preserved on 19ha (29%) of the 64ha of the facility. Most of this land is criss-crossed with gullies and creeks, and the terrain is too steep to be farmed.

Site overview

The Maroochy Research Facility is situated on the Sunshine Coast, 100km north of Brisbane.

The facility was established in 1945 with the purchase of a 46ha dairy farm in the foothills of the Blackall Range, four kilometres south west of Nambour. Like most farms in the district, it has several soil types with variable aspects and marked differences in elevation.

The facility’s original charter was to facilitate the expansion of subtropical fruit growing in southern Queensland. It provided a venue for long-term investigations and also served as a training ground for horticultural research and extension staff in the then Department of Agriculture and Stock.

For more than 50 years, the facility has serviced Queensland’s and Australia’s tropical and subtropical fruit and nut industries. During this time, it has become a global leader in applied research, development and extension. Additionally, it now services the greater South-East Queensland region as an administrative, managerial and regulatory hub.

Four business units of DAF operate at Maroochy Research Facility: Horticulture and Forestry Science, Biosecurity Queensland, Research Infrastructure, Rural Economic Development, and Animal Science.

The facility services Queensland and Australia's subtropical fruit and nut industries. It is a global leader in applied research, development and extension and staff work collaboratively with regional, state and international organisations and communities.

Research focus

Research undertaken on subtropical crops helps under-pin significant agricultural industries primarily in Queensland and also across Australia, e.g. though national breeding programs.

Major breeding programs for strawberries, low-chill stone fruit, custard apples, pineapples and ginger operate at the facility.

Disciplines represented at the facility include, but are not limited to: Infrastructure Management, Entomology, Plant Pathology, Agronomy, Crop Physiology, Plant Breeding, Postharvest Physiology, Extension, Regulation, Administration and Operations.


General facilities

The site has built facilities including an administration office with accommodation for 100 staff, conference and meeting rooms.

There is also general storage, a laboratory complex, a special tissue culture and biotechnology laboratory, a postharvest laboratory, a complex of glasshouses, machinery sheds, mechanical workshop, and chemical store.

The site is well serviced with a wide range of plant and equipment including tractors, trucks, sprayers and cultivators required to support research and grow a broad range of horticultural crops.

Specialised infrastructure

Controlled environments

  • Glasshouses (4)
  • Walk-in cold rooms (9)
  • Plant growth rooms (6)


  • Horticulture laboratory
  • Crop protection laboratory
  • Plant protection laboratory
  • Biotechnology laboratory – certified PC2 and quarantine containment (BC2)
  • Postharvest laboratory
  • Field laboratory

Other facilities

  • Soil shed (potting mixes and sterilisation)


  • Pumping and irrigation (town water and onsite water storage)
  • Onsite water storage (3 dams, 3 x 20,000L and 2 x 10,000L water tanks)

Specialised plant and equipment

  • Fertiliser spreader
  • Macadamia nut dehusker
  • Generators (2 x FG Wilson 88kVA)

Pest and pathogen control

  • Sprayer – Croplands 600L spray unit


  • Truck – Isuzu (maximum load 1980kg)

Sample processing

  • Drying ovens (4)