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South Australian apple & pear farmers receive $500,000 to salvage damaged harvest

South Australian farmers whose fruit crops were damaged by heavy storms are getting a $500,000 lifeline from the SA government to help salvage their damaged harvest.

Hailstones caused significant damage to 95 per cent of apples and pears in the Adelaide Hills region in October and Agriculture Minister Leon Bignell says the money will go towards juicing equipment so damaged fruit does not go to waste.

"Without assistance, it could have been an absolutely devastating harvest next March and the flow on effects would have been really damaging to the scores of growers," Mr Bignell said.

"The fruit grown in our regions is of huge value to the state's $19.97 billion food and wine sectors and it's important we take this step now to safeguard the future of the industry."

The growers association said the impact of the storms on the industry had been widespread.

"This hail event was almost unprecedented in the fact that it impacted on so much of the SA apple and pear industry," Apple and Pear Growers Association of SA, CEO, Susie Green said.

SA's apple and pear sector generated $284 million in 2016-17 with major exports going to Malaysia, Singapore and Japan.

Publication date: 11/27/2017


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