2018, Volume 15, Paper 2
New Red-blushed Pear to Boost Grower Profitability
Kerry Stott – Agriculture Victoria Research, Department of Economic Development Jobs, Transport and Resources (DEDJTR), Centre for AgriBioscience, 5 Ring Road, La Trobe University, Bundoora
Mark O’Connell – Agriculture Victoria Research, DEDJTR, Tatura Centre, 255 Ferguson Rd, Tatura
Ian Goodwin – Agriculture Victoria Research, DEDJTR, Tatura Centre, 255 Ferguson Rd, Tatura
Susanna Turpin – Agriculture Victoria Research, DEDJTR, Tatura Centre, 255 Ferguson Rd, Tatura
Bill Malcolm – Department of Agriculture and Food Systems, University of Melbourne, Parkville.
 This project has been funded by Hort Innovation, using the Hort Innovation apple and pear research and development levy and contributions from the Australian Government with co-investment from DEDJTR. Thanks also to the following: David Cornwall, Dave Haberfield, Wendy Sessions and Lexie McClymont of AVR; Jason Shields of Plunkett Orchards, Ardmona; Angus Crawford of APAL; and the two referees, Rachel Elkins and Masood Azeem.
A discounted net cash flow (NCF) model incorporating Monte Carlo simulation was developed to quantify the net benefits and risks of growing the new red-blushed pear cultivar ‘ANP-0131’ (Deliza®) on a representative orchard block in Victoria’s Goulburn Valley. Results were compared to those for retaining a traditional low-density (343 trees/ha) planting of ‘Packham’s Triumph’. ‘ANP-0131’ was grafted to Quince A rootstock and trained on Open Tatura trellis at densities of 1,481, 2,222 or 4,444 trees/ha; these are three of the training system x rootstocks x tree spacing combinations currently being investigated at Agriculture Victoria’s experimental orchard in Tatura. The trees in the experimental orchard are currently in their fifth year of a potential life-span of 30 years and have been fruiting for the last three years. Hence, the analysis is prospective and based on crucial assumptions concerning pack-outs, prices and yields. From 10,000 simulations it was found that growers could invest in the new ‘ANP-0131’ pear system with confidence. Subject to the law of diminishing returns, the most profitable planting was 2,222 trees/ha, for which the mean Net Present Value (NPV) was $258,471/ha evaluated over 30 years using a discount rate of 4.5% real. The Modified Internal Rate of Return (MIRR) was 10.9 per cent, beating the real nine per cent return on Australian equities. The payback period ranged from 7 to 11 years from best to worst case scenarios. The relative advantage of the new planting over the existing planting of ‘Packham’s Triumph’ was clear; the mean annuity of the NPV for the new planting was $15,835/ha p.a., the NCF for the existing planting was a modest $4,595/ha p.a. and there was a 20 per cent chance that it would lose money in any one year.
Key words: Red-blushed pear, ‘ANP-0131’, Deliza®, Open Tatura, high density systems, orchard economics.
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