Australian growers urged to take survey to help combat Queensland Fruit Fly

Commercial fruit and vegetable growers, and the community at large, have the opportunity to share their thoughts on the management of Queensland fruit fly (Qfly) as part of a new survey – and help inform the future management of the pest in the process.

The phone-based survey is part of the ongoing ‘SITplus’ initiative, a collaborative and multi-faceted project to fight Qfly involving Horticulture Innovation Australia, key government agencies and the country’s leading research organisations.

Targeting the Riverland, Sunraysia and Murray/Goulburn Valley regions, the survey is being run by CSIRO and will delve into the acceptance of and attitudes towards area wide management (AWM) of Qfly.

AWM involves the coordination of pest-management approaches across all fly habitats within a set area – not just on commercial farms, but throughout the whole community.

The survey will also collect participants’ thoughts on the use of the sterile insect technique (SIT), which involves the release of sterile flies into the environment so that the wild population of flies cannot reproduce.

Growers who are interested in taking part in the research can register their telephone number at They will be contacted during mid-September for the survey, which is expected to take approximately 25 minutes and can be scheduled for an appropriate time.

Hort Innovation Chief Executive John Lloyd encouraged all growers within the stipulated regions to take part, no matter what they grow and regardless of whether their produce is considered a Qfly host.

“This is an opportunity to share your thoughts and help inform future approaches to the management of Qlfy, which is a pest of huge economic significance for the horticulture industry. The insect is costing an estimated $300 million in lost produce and trade opportunities,” he said.

The phone surveys will be conducted by a telephone survey company working on behalf of CSIRO. All information gathered will be confidential and stored in aggregate form, which cannot be traced back to any individuals.

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