The construction of Australia’s first facility to combat fruit fly has now commenced in Port Augusta, South Australia. The $3.8 million National Sterile Insect Technology (SIT) facility will aim to combat the spread of Queensland fruit fly (Qfly) in major horticulture growing regions. Construction of the facility is expected to take 10 months.

HortInnovation GM Research, Marketing and Investments. (From left to right) David Moore-Senator for South Australia, Senator Anne Rutson and Will Zacharin- Biosecurity SA Executive Director.

Horticulture Innovation Australia (Hort Innovation) CEO, Mr John Lloyd said the $3.8 million centre is one part of a $47 million investment over the next five years to support the national fruit fly management program.

“Hort Innovation is contributing $800,000 to the facility in addition to the $3 million South Australian State Government commitment,” Mr Lloyd said.

“The centre will produce up to 50 million sterile male Qflies each week, which will be released to mate with females, thereby reducing offspring production.”

“The production of male-only sterile Qfly has never been done before on this scale.”
“This facility will have a significant impact on the future management of Qfly in Australia. It will assist in ensuring South Australia remains fruit fly free, while enabling the eastern states to reduce the significant impact of endemic Qfly in major horticulture growing regions.”

Dan van Holst Pellekaan MP, Tim Whetstone MP, Adrian Pederick MP, Shadow Minister David Ridgway MLC, Senator Anne Ruston, Minister Leon Bignell and Peter Treloar MP.

The national fruit fly management program is run by the SITplus consortium, a research group with experts from Macquarie University, Primary Industries and Regions SA’s Biosecurity SA and South Australian Research and Development Institute divisions, Horticulture Innovation Australia, the CSIRO Health and Biosecurity Flagship, Plant & Food Research Australia, and the NSW Department of Primary Industries.

For more information:
Amy Braddon
Horticulture Innovation Australia
Tel. +61 2 8295 2333+61 2 8295 2333
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