Celebrating our Australian macadamia champions on National Agriculture Day (2022)

Today on National Agriculture Day, we celebrate all the people who make up the Australian macadamia industry - the growers, researchers, consultants, processors, marketers and suppliers who are working together to ensure our industry has a productive and sustainable future. We also extend our congratulations to the AMS Awards of Excellence winners:

  • Stephen McLean (Northern Rivers NSW grower & consultant) - Norm Greber award
  • Macadamia Farm Management (Banyula orchard, Bundaberg QLD) - Grower of the Year (Large Farm)
  • Graham Wessling (Farm Manager, NSW & QLD) - Young Achiever of the Year
  • Henry and Jarod Agostinelli (Glass House Mountains, QLD) - Grower of the Year (Small Farm)

Full stories on all our winners (including regional winners) will be in our News Bulletin, out later this month. Below is a short snippet from each article…

Norm Greber Award winner Stephen McLean is someone who needs no introduction, so considerable has his contribution been to the industry over the last 35 years. In this time he has earned a well-deserved reputation for a commitment to excellence and for promoting practical, evidence-based solutions that growers can have confidence in. Steve’s greatest interest has been in integrated pest and disease management. He was involved in early work developing a pheromone trapping system for macadamia nut borer and he has maintained this commitment to IPDM in his roles since – as a grower, consultant, providing grower services in NSW for Suncoast Gold and as an industry representative on R&D and IPDM committees and SIAP. The macadamia industry is respected as a leader in adoption of IPDM, an achievement that Steve has played a significant role in bringing about.

Macadamia Farm Management’s orchard Banyula is a 52 ha orchard whose trees range in age from 14 to 22 years. It achieved an impressive 1.6 t/ha SKR average over the last five seasons and 1.96 t/ha for the 2021 season. According to MFM director Scott Allcott, ensuring that the trees produce at a consistently high level as those at Banyula have in the last few years requires close attention to management.

Henry and Jarod Agostinelli’s 14 ha orchard, located in Beerburrum in the Glass House Mountains growing region, achieved an impressive 1.89 t/ha SKR over five years and 0.49% RKR for the 2021 season. The orchard consists of 1500 trees (246 and 741s) that are 24 years old, and 2000 MCT1 trees aged between two and four years.

2022 Young Achiever of the Year Graham Wessling manages four orchards (two in Queensland and two in NSW) for CLMacs totalling 270 ha with trees aged from three to 30 years. Graham has been involved in macadamias since 2005 and has developed a reputation as an innovator who is constantly looking to find more efficient ways of improving productivity and nut quality, including on the farms he manages that are in floodplain environments.

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