Hort360 expanded in SEQ
Growcom’s Horticultural BMP assessment encourages farmers to optimise the design of their farms.
A PROGRAM to reduce sediment, nutrient and pesticide runoff from horticultural land into waterways is being expanded to more South East Queensland farms.
Growcom’s Horticultural BMP (Hort360) digital risk assessment encourages farmers to optimise the design of their farms to reduce runoff and the use of chemicals.
It includes soil mapping and farm contour erosion mapping to minimise valuable agricultural soil loss to waterways during rain events.
Environment Minister Leeanne Enoch said the Queensland Government would spend $850,000 over two years to drive change in the Lockyer, Bremer and Pumicestone catchments.
“This will have a positive impact on the health and resilience of SEQ’s local waterways, in addition to improving productivity, profitability and sustainability for farms in the region.”
About 30 per cent of horticultural areas are now covered by the Hort360 program in South East Queensland. In Pumicestone Passage catchment, more than 45pc of growers have committed to the program.
Growcom board chairman Les Williams said Hort360 was changing how growers viewed their farms.
“Whether it be soil, water or nutrient management, I encourage all horticultural growers to get on board with Hort360,” Mr Williams said.
“It is a complete package; a 360 degree view of your farm.”
The Queensland Government has invested some $2.5 million in the Hort360 program, which educates growers through the delivery of field days, workshops and technical information sessions.