RAIN and flooding from ex-Tropical Cyclone Debbie had a "significant” impact on the Northern Rivers' macadamia crop, the industry has revealed.
For the 2017 season, Australian macadamia growers produced a crop of 46,000 tonnes in-shell at 10% moisture (43,000 tonnes in-shell at 3.5% moisture).
The Australian Macadamia Society said record rainfall on the Northern Rivers region in June caused the crop to be 10 per cent lower than the forecast issued post Cyclone Debbie.
Kernel production was also down marginally at 9000 tonnes.
But the society's market development manager, Lynne Ziehlke, said global demand for macadamias remained strong across all markets for both kernel and in-shell.
A new three-year international marketing strategy has just been launched, and has been designed to further drive steady growth in global demand in anticipation of more robust supply becoming available in the coming years.
"In preparation for the expected increases in global production, we've ramped up our commitment to the kernel market with the launch of a new initiative designed to encourage greater use of kernel in food products,” Ms Ziehlke said.
The initiative includes an 'innovation challenge' to discover new product concepts and a series of consumer research aimed at uncovering new insights.
Australian macadamia growers are now investing plenty of time and resources into nurturing the 2018 crop.
Preparations are well under way for the next harvest which will begin in February.