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International success requires a commitment to R&D.

A commitment to research and development is vital if Australian

horticultural industries are to take advantage of the expanding range of

opportunities in export markets, according to Parliamentary Secretary to

the Minister for Primary Industries and Energy, Senator David Brownhill.

Speaking at the Peak Industry Body meeting in Sydney today, Senator

Brownhill said the day-long forum which involved horticultural industry

leaders and the HRDC was appropriately titled Partnership in Horticulture.

"This is appropriate because the only way industry can obtain the maximum

benefit from RD is for both sides to work very closely with each other,"

he said.

"Research must be driven by the needs of industry but, on the other hand,

industry must also adopt the findings from research programs to take

advantage of that work."

Senator Brownhill said effective communication was an obvious element for

success, and meetings such as the Partnership in Horticulture forum

demonstrated a commitment to improved communication links between the HRDC

and industry.

"It should be clear to everyone involved in horticulture that RD can

deliver huge benefits to industry, growers and processors," he said.

"Great gains have already been delivered in many areas - look, for example,

at the new crop varieties, management techniques and more efficient water

use.

"For Australian horticultural producers to be able to compete in

international markets they will have to be operating at world's best

practice in terms of efficiency and quality.

"A commitment to RD will ensure they are better equipped to meet that

challenge."

Further inquiries:

Senator Brownhill's office, Murray Hansen (067) 666 998