By Growcom CEO Stephen Barnard

Horticulture is a perpetual motion machine. Inputs and energy are added at one end, resulting in produce and profits which are reinvested in the next crop. More produce follows, with more profit and the machine turns over.

The machine is always being tested by participants, but at any one time is more or less in balance.

Too many new inputs and energy, resulting in more produce but without any growth in the size of the market results in less profit. This is not fun place to be for individual growers or the industry.

While agriculture generally, and horticulture in particular, present huge potential for growing our way out of the economic and employment losses from COVID-19, we need to be careful in scaling our machine otherwise we risk throwing it out of balance.

Commitments from governments to lower input prices are welcome and necessary to increase industry profitability.

We must at the same time be growing demand as supply increases, either domestically or overseas.

Turning around Australian’s eating habits to increase consumption of fresh fruits, vegetables and nuts should be a long term priority all governments are working towards today, not just on health grounds, but for the development of our industry.

In the meantime, expanding our export markets is the surest way to prime the pump, to pull through the supply chain and absorb the additional produce we’re ready to grow.

Raising awareness among growers of what opportunities exist overseas, and getting them ready for export is a key priority for Growcom.  

At Hort Connections next week in Brisbane, and with the support of the Queensland Government, Growcom is delivering the Queensland Horticulture Export Congress and Queensland Horticulture Export Dinner.

Queensland growers and wider supply chain members are invited to attend both events as we explore current trends, key challenges, and upcoming opportunities as well as celebrate individuals and businesses who had achieved success in the export sector.

To register your attendance at the Queensland Horticulture Export Congress, visit

To secure your ticket to the­ Queensland Horticulture Export Dinner, visit