Plant & Food Research, Australia Pty Ltd
LOCATION: Northern Barns, Building 4G Waite Road, Waite Campus, Urrbrae
Our Core Purpose
To enhance the value and productivity of horticultural, arable, seafood and food and beverage industries to contribute to economic growth and the environmental and social prosperity of our clients and the communities they live in.
Valued by our stakeholders and admired by our peers for the quality and impact of our science.
Who We Are
Plant & Food Research is a science and innovation company. It is a subsidiary of Plant & Food Research New Zealand Ltd which is a Crown Research Institute.
Plant & Food Research has ten staff in Australia; three here at Waite, four co-located at QUT in Brisbane, two in Melbourne and one in Mildura. The entire company employs 968 staff largely based in New Zealand and conducts science globally. In 2017/18 total revenue was $156M, with royalties from Plant Variety Rights accounting for about $38M of that.
As this suggests plant breeding is core to our business and we are best known for our new varieties of kiwifruit such as SunGold™ and apples such as Jazz™, Envy™ and Rockit™. Other crops include blueberries, raspberries, black currants, hops, cereals, brassica, pear, apricot, peach, plum, kiwiberry, sweet potato and potato.
Plant & Food science is organised into five portfolios each lead by a General Manager:
- New Cultivar Innovation (Breeding & Genomics)
Consumers are crying out for food choices that are natural, delicious and different, delivering opportunities for marketers of premium produce with novel characteristics. Our strategy is to develop new breeding tools to accelerate development of cultivars which address international consumer trends, are adapted to climatic change and are resistant to key pests and diseases
Premium produce is about more than looking good and tasting great; increasingly it means meeting the highest standards in product safety, integrity and consumer trust. Our strategy is to develop technologies to eliminate the impact of new incursions and generate targeted pest and disease control technologies and systems that use negligible chemicals.
- Sustainable Production
In addition to quality, consumers are demanding that the food they eat has been produced using the best possible sustainable practices. Our strategy is to generate eco-verified production systems and tools, cost-efficient production systems that deliver high profitability, and closed production systems which minimise the environmental footprint.
- Food Innovation
Discerning consumers are calling out for healthy, convenient functional foods and beverages that deliver benefits they can feel, and food industries are seeking out new means of capturing value from this consumer trend. We work with industry to develop premium foods and beverages.
- Seafood Technologies
The ocean is a rich resource delivering the potential for high returns from seafood and marine products that meet the quality and sustainability demands of discerning consumers. Our strategy is to develop processing and preservation technologies to support market access and premium seafood exports, and novel high value products from marine resources.
There is also a commercial arm of the organisation that takes in business development, intellectual property, marketing and communications.
RELATED NEWS & EVENTS
Science and Innovation company Plant & Food Research Australia is establishing a base at the University of Adelaide’s Waite campus – a move that will boost research and innovation in South Australia’s horticulture and agri-food sectors.