The Innovation Seed Fund is a joint initiative between the University of Melbourne and Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources (DEDJTR), pursuing innovative and high impact research projects that leverage the strengths of the two partners.
Introduction by Dr Dongryeol Ryu
Interview with Dr Dongryeol Ryu about UAV borne thermography for plant water stress mapping

Introduction by Dr Dongryeol Ryu, Senior Lecturer at Melbourne University, who talks about  the Innovation Seed Fund for Horticulture Development and it's role with the UAV work with for plant water stress mapping.

Research:
  • Skilled workforce needs in the Goulburn Valley
  • Apple sunburn risk & harvest fruit size estimation using smartphone App
  • The maturity index meter and modelling to optimise pre- and post-harvest apple quality
  • Low-cost infrared thermography & unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) for the rapid detection of plant water stress
  • Is there a Willingness for a gradual land-use change from fruit to vegetables in the Goulburn Valley?
  • Mapping extension capability of the GV fresh pear sector
  • Economic analysis of tactical farm-level decisions for irrigation management in horticultural production

Underway:

  • Identification of the Colletotrichum spp casuing Anthracnose diseases of almonds and citrus in Australia
  • Investigating winegrape quality trait compounds and functional components of grape pomace in the context of climate change
  • Evaluation of technologies to enhance harvest efficiency in Horticulture
  • Impact of rising C02 and temperature on quality and nutritional value of strawberry
  • Employees’ experiences of fruit industry career pathways.
  • Innovative rapid assessment of sugars in plant tissue

Round 2 - 3  Project findings and recommendations

Impacts of subsurface drip irrigation on soil microbial communities to improve tomato production

Understanding skilled workforce needs in the Goulburn Valley

Apple sunburn risk & harvest fruit size estimation using smartphone App

Maturity index meter and modelling to optimise pre- and post-harvest apple quality

Background

The Innovation Seed Fund was a joint initiative between the University of Melbourne and Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources (DEDJTR), pursuing innovative and high impact research projects that leverage the strengths of the two partners. The fund focused on Horticulture industry development and aimed to:

  • Create an environment where scholarship based on agreed high impact research and innovation priorities can flourish;
  • Be a seed fund to develop quality collaborative projects that will have significant impact;
  • Bring researchers from the University of Melbourne and DEDJTR together to develop innovative and inspiring projects;
  • Develop the next generation of agricultural research professionals and research communicators.

The scheme supported research teams to develop and implement interdisciplinary research projects that addressed one or more of the themes set out below and/or focused on a topics relevant to the research objectives of both organisations.

Funding focused on the following themes:

  • Boosting Victorian horticulture industries’ productivity and competiveness by innovation in production systems (e.g. new growing systems, integrated approaches for nutrient, water, pest and disease management such as robotics or unmanned aerial vehicles);
  • Managing seasonal variability (e.g. manipulating fruit quality under covers, use of digital technology to predict and reduce risks of climate change impacts);
  • Improving horticulture management systems that yield high quality produce to meet the requirements/preferences of consumers (e.g. new approaches for storage, handling, logistics and supply management);
  • Optimising horticultural exports by developing market information and addressing issues (e.g. Queensland Fruit Fly management practices; improved market access protocols for target markets, obtaining and optimising market information for export development);
  • Building industry capability, capacity and supporting transition (e.g. innovative re-design of existing outputs or processes such as products and labour, development of value adding products or processes, workforce and education attraction and skills for a smarter workforce).

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