Expert Details

Expert in Avocado Fruit Production, Orchard Management and Botany, Nursery Management and Clonal Propagation Procedures

Expert ID: 732438 Australia

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Expert experience in horticulture research includes 10 years of research on avocado (Persea americana) including rootstock selection and evaluation, pruning techniques, post harvest fruit evaluation, and simulated shipping. He serves as Commercial Horticulturist for one of the world's largest avocado agribusinesses. Included all aspects of orchard management including nutritional recommendations for 1300 ha of avocado orchards, pre-plant soil preparation, integrated pest and disease management, tree size control, plant growth regulators, irrigation management, organic avocado farming according to EC regulations 2092/91 and 834/2007. Expert has implemented and managed multiple European and global certification schemes including: GlobalGAP, LeafUK, Tesco Natures Choice/Nurture, HACCP, BRC.

He is also highly experience in management and consulting in large avocado nurseries specializing in propagation of clonal rootstocks and trees. Includes seed planting, media preparation and analysis, etiolation, grafting, auxin treatment, clonal rooting, growing on, irrigation, nutrition and orchard establishment. His areas of expertise also include nursery layout, access control and hygiene.

Expert's specialty areas also include the implementation of organic principles in organically certified avocado and other orchards. He is experienced in EC, Japanese, USDA and Australian standards. He is experienced also with conversion to organic agriculture. He provides advice on inputs allowed in organic agriculture. He is skilled in pest and disease management. He is also well versed in the manufacture of high-quality compost by Controlled Microbial Composting process.

He has consulted in general orchard management plans for avocado, mango and litchi (lychee); organic nutritional plans; tree size control strategies; CMC composting; orchard planning and establishment; clonal avocado rootstock production; and pre-purchase farm technical due-diligence reports.

Education

Year Degree Subject Institution
Year: 1994 Degree: Master of Science in Agriculture Subject: Horticultural Science Institution: University of Natal, South Africa
Year: 1990 Degree: Bachelor of Science in Agriculture Subject: Horticulture and Agronomy Institution: University of Natal South Africa

Work History

Years Employer Title Department Responsibilities
Years: 2012 to Present Employer: Undisclosed Title: Owner, Senior Horticultural Scientist, and Horticultural Consultant Department: Responsibilities: Expert provided horticultural consultancy on all agronomic aspects of avocado production and nurseries, including nutritional programs, Integrated pest Management, irrigation, tree size control, fruit and tree physiology, organic farming, problem-solving, phytophthora management, soil preparation, orchard establishment, etc.
Years: 2010 to 2014 Employer: Birdwood Nursery (Australia) Title: Senior Manager: R&D and Technical Department: Responsibilities: Expert's responsibilities included the testing of new producs and techniques as well as the overall management of all nursery procedures for 40+ crops. He serves as a specialist in clonal propagation of avocado rootstocks. Responsibilities included insect scouting and IPM as well as the release and management of beneficial insects. He implemented and managed all nursery certification schemes, including ANVAS, Niasa Best Nursery Practice, Niasa EcoHort, Niasa BioSecure HACCP, various ICA's. He also attended National and International Conferences.
Years: 2005 to 2009 Employer: Westfalia Technological Services (South Africa) Title: Technical Manager Department: Responsibilities: He managed the company's rootstock breeding and evaluation program for the benefit of the nternational avocado industries. Expert was responsible for auditing all production certifications, including organic farming, GlobalGAP, LeafUK, Fairtrade, and Tesco Nature’s Choice/Nurture. Expert served on national industry research committees as well.
Years: 2000 to 2005 Employer: Westfalia Fruit Estates (South Africa) Title: Commercial Horticulturist Department: Avocado Production Responsibilities: Expert provided recommendations for 1200 ha of avocado and litchi orchards, including nutritional recommendations, pruning programs, orchard floor management, orchard establishment, and others. He managed 290 ha of avocado orchards. Expert was responsible for all production certifications and internal auditing, including organic farming (according to EC2092/91), GLOBALGAP, and Tesco Nature’s Choice. He researched, implemented and managed a composting unit manufacturing about 10,000 m3 compost/yr from organic residues of fruit processing factories.
Years: 1994 to 2000 Employer: Westfalia Technological Services Title: Research Horticulturist and Nursery Manager Department: Responsibilities: He conducted research into the horticultural aspects of avocado and litchi, including rootstock and cultivar evaluation, organic cultivation, and tree size control. This entailed applied research, collecting and statistically analyzing data, writing technical and scientific papers, and presentations at farmers’ days, National symposia and International Congresses. He managed country’s largest commercial avocado and mango nursery.

Government Experience

Years Agency Role Description
Years: 1992 to 1994 Agency: Agricultural Research Council, South Africa Role: Horticultural Researcher Description: Horticultural research into litchi and macadamia cultivars and cultivation aspects.

International Experience

Years Country / Region Summary
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Israel Summary: Technical visit to avocado research and production areas in Israel . Attend the World Avocado Congress in Tel Aviv.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Israel Summary: Technical study of organic avocado farming in Israel
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: California Summary: Evaluate test-export of avocado nursery trees to California. Study tour of avocado research and production sites in California including University of California Riverside, Brokaw Nursery, and South Coast Experimental Farm
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Kenya Summary: Visit avocado Farms in Kenya with a view to exporting nursery trees and gather information about the Kenyan avocado industry
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Mexico Summary: Technical information-gathering tour of avocado production and research facilities in Mexico, including CICTAMEX. Attend the IV World Avocado Congress, Uruapan.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: USA Summary: Further studies on avocado research and production in California. Seek improved fruit packing machinery in Washington State.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: USA, UK Summary: Follow-up on fruit sorting and packing machinery in Washington State using x-ray and NIR technology. Visit fruit pre-packers in the UK to view and solve some problems with avocado fruit handling and distribution.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Spain Summary: Technical visit to production areas, research institutes and nurseries on the Costadel Sol. Attend the World Avocado Conference in Malaga.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Florida, Puerto Rico Summary: Technical study of mango research and production in the tropics of Florida and Puerto Rico. Attend the international Biotechnology of Tree Crops Conference in Daytona Beach, Florida
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Germany, Turkey, Cyprus, Israel Summary: Technical Investigations into opportunities to grow avocado in the Mediterranean region. Attend Biofach Organic Expo in Germany.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Ghana Summary: Technical investigations into investment opportunities in Northern Ghana. Visit mango production farms and government research facilities.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Australia New Zealand Summary: Technical fact-finding tour of Australian and New Zealand avocado and mango regions.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Egypt, Ethiopia Summary: Technical visits to Ethiopia and Egypt with the aim of investigating business opportunities in avocado production
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Chile, Brazil Summary: Technical visits to investigate business opportunities and intellectual property development in Brazil and Chile. Attend the World Avocado Conference in Chile.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: California Summary: Technical visit to UCR and Brokaw Nursery to negotiate rights to new avocado cultivars and rootstocks and study avocado nursery techniques.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Australia/New Zraland Summary: Technical visits to avocado nurseries and marketin of new avocado rootstocks for Australia and New Zealand.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: China Summary: Technical visit to Hainan, China to attend the International Mango Conference, and study mango production techniques in China.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Argentina Summary: Avocado production and nursery consultancy for Argentina's largest avocado producer.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: South Africa Summary: Avocado certifications consultancy for Westfalia Fruit Estates, South Africa;s largest avocado grower.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Argentina Summary: Avocado production and nursery consultancy, Guayal
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Argentina Summary: Avocado production and nursery consultancy, Guayal
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: South Africa Summary: Avocado production and nursery consultancy, Mununzwu Estates.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: California, Florida, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic Summary: Technical avocado and mango nursery and production tour to the USA ( Brokaw Nursery; Fairchild Tropical) and the Caribbean. Attend the International mango conference in the Dominican Republic.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Argentina Summary: Avocado production and nursery consultancy- Guayal Paltas
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Argentina Summary: Avocado production and nursery consultancy - Guayal Paltas
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Argentina Summary: Avocado production and nursery consultancy.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Argentina Summary: Avocado production and nursery consultancy.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: New Zealand Summary: Avocado nursery consultancy, Riverside Nursery.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: South Africa Summary: Avocado production and nursery consultancy, Westfalia Fruit Estates, Mununzwu Estates.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Peru Summary: Avocado Nursery consultancy, ProHass.
Years: 1995 to 1995 Country / Region: Brazil, Argentina Summary: Avocado Nursery and production consultancy; Jaguacy and Guayal.Paltas.

Additional Experience

Training / Seminars
Customer awareness; 1995
Conflict handling; 1995, 2000
Time management 1995
Labour management by goal-setting, measurement and feedback 1995;2005
Cultural Awareness -working in culturally diverse environments; 2005
Worker health and safety; 2008
Identification of critical control points, hazard analysis - HACCP, 2003
Diploma in Marketing, UNISA, 2009
Nursery Business Development 2011
BioSecure HACCP in nurseries, 2013
Annual Symposium of the South African Avocado Association 1995-2009
World Avocado Congress, 1995-2015
Nursery and Garden Industries Association (NGIA) Symposium 2011, 2013
Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation (RIRDC) of Australia Symposium; 2011
NZAIC /Avocados Australia Joint Congress; 2009-2013
South African Mango Growers Association Annual symposium; 2005-2009
ISHS International Symposium on Biotechnology of Tree Crops 2005.
ISHS International Mango Symposium, 2008, 2010, 2013.
Mangos Australia National Symposium 2011.
Citrus Australia National Symposium 2010.
Marketing Experience
Intellectual Property Manager 2005-2009. International Marketing of new superior cultivars and rootstocks.
Other Relevant Experience
Broad experience in Farm accreditations required for exporting fruit to EU
Organic agriculture
Nursery tree quality parameters

Language Skills

Language Proficiency
English First language, Technical scientific proficiency
Afrikaans Second language, Technical scientific proficiency

Fields of Expertise

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