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Sustainability

The AMS is committed to clean, green production and the world’s best practice farming methods to help create a sustainable future not only for our members, but also for the communities in which they work.

We invest millions of dollars annually in ongoing scientific research towards continually improving all parts of the growing and production process.

We lead the way in biological control on-farm (using natural methods to manage pests and diseases) and actively encourage our growers to look to organic and alternative solutions in the management of their orchards, including the use of integrated pest management (IPM) to control pests and reduce the use of pesticides.

Biological control

Biological farming helps improve the environment while reducing erosion, diseases and insect problems, as well as altering weed pressure. The introduction of the Trichogramma wasp, now used by almost 70% of our growers, has helped contain an 8% loss to nut borer and led to a dramatic reduction in the use of chemical sprays over the last decade.

Many of our growers also use native bees because they are a natural pollinator. This protects honey bee populations, which are under threat globally, and in turn protects the industry’s long term investment.

Native barn owls are increasingly being used as an aid to fight off rodents and keep them from consuming our valuable crops. Many growers now install nesting boxes in their orchards to encourage the owls to prey on any unwanted pests.

We’re also leading a new initiative to develop an environmentally-friendly program to control the most damaging pest of sub-tropical horticulture crops, fruit spotting bug. This bug causes millions of dollars damage each year to a range of horticultural crops from macadamias to avocados and lychees.

Conserving our natural resources

Conserving our natural resources – the water, soil, air, native vegetation and wildlife – is essential for the long term future of the industry. With our encouragement, many of our growers are regenerating remnant rainforest on their farms as a way of protecting the natural topography and waterways of the region. This creates a haven for native animals and beneficial insects as well as improving overall soil health. Many are also doing their bit to protect the endangered Birdwing Butterfly, by planting Richmond Birdwing vines for the butterfly to lay its eggs on and for caterpillars to eat.

The AMS was also heavily involved in the development of Smothergrass – an innovative grass that covers the orchard floor and helps control soil erosion.

And we’re extremely proud of that fact that our members use 100% of the nut they harvest. The husk is used as fertilizer and new uses are constantly being researched, such as biochar for carbon capture and storage.

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