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Project name Precision seeding benefits for processing pea production
Funding bodies Hort Innovation
Chief Investigators Dr Alistair Gracie
Contributors Simplot Australia

In 2016, TIA embarked on a three-year project to increase the yield of green pea crops through precision planting techniques. The project is a collaboration with Simplot Australia and has received strong interest and support from industry.

The aim is to increase the yield of green peas from 6 tonnes per hectare to 8 tonnes per hectare by 2020 – and the research team, led by TIA Researcher Dr Alistair Gracie, has made some promising progress.

The team found that by spacing green pea crops exactly 10 centimetres apart, the yield can be up to 15 per cent greater than plants with different spatial arrangements. This planting arrangement allows plants to easily access water, light and nutrients.

As part of this project, experiments are being conducted at farms around Tasmania including TIA’s Vegetable Research Facility at Forthside in the State’s North-West, and commercial vegetable operations.

The project will also determine how growers can effectively implement this knowledge into practice.

How important are green peas? Each year Tasmanian vegetable growers produce approximately 24,000 tonnes of green peas from about 4,000 hectares of land for processing. These peas have a farm gate value of $10 million and the volume of green peas produced in Tasmania accounts for around 95 per cent of the total production of green peas for processing in Australia.

Read an update about the project from Dr Alistair Gracie, published on the FreshPlaza website.