Best management practices improve profitability for banana farms

News release | 31-Jan-2018

New research from the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) shows that banana farmers adopting best management practices can improve their profitability, whilst reducing sediment and nutrient in run off from their farms to help the Great Barrier Reef.

DAF agricultural economics manager, Mark Poggio said a recent study examined the costs and benefits of banana farmers adopting the best management practices (BMP) advocated by the industry’s Banana BMP Program.

“The study investigated a range of management practice changes, including nutrient management, irrigation, tillage and fallow management,” Mr Poggio said.

“In the case of nutrient management, it was found that by targeting fertiliser application more carefully, farmers can improve nitrogen use efficiency and increase their profitability in the process.

“Water quality modelling results found that implementing best practice nutrient management was the single most important driver of dissolved inorganic nitrogen abatement on farms.”

Mr Poggio explained that the findings are based on a range of modelled scenarios developed in consultation with industry.

“The scenarios represented typical banana growing farms in the Tully and Innisfail regions, with variation in farm sizes, soil types and slopes,” he said.

The project was funded by the Queensland Reef Water Quality Program and the report is available to download (PDF, 3.6MB).

Media contact: ,