FROM gene editing to cushion fluffing, the topics were broad, informative and entertaining on the second day of the Australian Banana Congress 2019 at the Gold Coast on Thursday.
Held at the RACV Royal Pines, growers from across the nation joined researchers, scientists, product representatives and marketers to delve into how the Australian banana industry is travelling and what challenges lie ahead.
In 2017/18, 96 per cent of Australian households purchased bananas, buying an average of 875g per shopping trip. In that same period, fresh supply was valued at almost $600 million.
Congress chair and Australian Banana Growers' Council director, Paul Inderbitzin, said the event provides a chance for all those involved in the industry to consider how to deliver the best product for consumers into the future.
- Bananas celebrated on national day to support industry
- Bananas need more branding, says Nuffield Scholar
- Bananas infiltrate pop culture: a National Banana Day list
"This year's program is aimed at giving growers the tools and motivation they need to take their banana businesses to the next level," he said.
"Whether it be the latest R&D, an insight into marketing techniques or overcoming challenges posed by disease - ultimately it's all about delivering the best possible product into homes across the country."
Some of the speakers included former professional rugby league player and farm safety ambassador, Shane Webcke, demographer and social commentator, Bernard Salt AM, and Marc Jackson, who is the special projects manager at one of the world's biggest banana businesses - Fyffes in Costa Rica.
The day also included Science Speed Talks where seven banana researchers each gave a three minute wrap-up of their projects before entering into a discussion panel.
The congress continues on Friday, finishing with the Banana Ball on Friday night.