Piñata Farms expand polytunnel strawberry production

Polytunnels at Piñata Farms, Stanthorpe.

Polytunnels at Piñata Farms, Stanthorpe.

Piñata Farms will trial growing eight hectares of its winter strawberry crop under polytunnels at its Wamuran home farm this coming season. This follows early results of trials at Stanthorpe on Queensland’s Granite Belt during summer where fruit growing under 1.6 hectares of polytunnels escaped damage from three hail storms.

Piñata Fams’ managing director, Gavin Scurr, said the polytunnels erected last winter had effectively protected summer fruit from rain and hail.

“We’re continuing to adapt growing techniques to achieve the best results from fruit grown in a protected environment. Our focus is on improving marketable yield,” he said.

Piñata Farms strawberries.

Piñata Farms strawberries.

Piñata Farms will erect the polytunnels at Wamuran in March as well as another eight hectares at Stanthorpe in May.

The Wamuran strawberry operation has also expanded by an additional 16 hectares in readiness for the winter crop. A third dam with a 60 megalitre capacity has also been built.

Mr Scurr said, other than initially protecting fruit from weather events, it was too early to analyse the polytunnels’ return on investment. Supplied by Haygrove Tunnels in the United Kingdom, the polytunnels will be installed by Piñata Farms.

Piñata Farms produces strawberries year ’round on approximately 48 hectares at Wamuran (May-September) and 10 hectares at Stanthorpe (September-May).

Piñata Farms managing director Gavin Scurr

Piñata Farms managing director Gavin Scurr.

Gavin Scurr at Northern Australia Food Futures 2016

Piñata Farms managing director, Gavin Scurr, will be among the keynote speakers at the Northern Australia Food Futures Conference 2016 in Darwin from April 11-13. Mr Scurr will join agricultural industry leaders and policy decision makers at the conference to be held at the Darwin Convention Centre.

He will share wisdoms and insights gained from more than 20 years of producing fruit in northern Australia including Mareeba Gold pineapples and Honey Gold mangoes in Far North Queensland and the Northern Territory.

New website for Piñata Farms

Piñata Farms has launched a new corporate website. Features include a history timeline of the Piñata Farms family business, as well as farm, team and product profiles.

A Chatter section includes behind-the-scenes information, recipes, tips, media releases and in-season news.

An interactive map demonstrates the scale of Piñata Farms’ operations while a media download section provides high res images and files for industry and media contacts.

Piñata Farms is a proud Queensland family business with origins dating back to the 1960s in the state’s south-east. Founded by pineapple farmer Geoff Scurr at Wamuran, Piñata Farms is now operated by Geoff’s sons, Gavin and Stephen Scurr. Piñata Farms is the largest pineapple producer in Australia, one of the largest strawberry producers and holds the breeding rights to grow specialty Honey Gold mangoes, produced in every mainland state except South Australia.

For more information go to: www.pinata.com.au  Ω

Posted 4 March 2016