New Irrigation Equipment For Grape Growers

New Irrigation Equipment For Grape Growers

Victoria Minister for Water Peter Walsh

Tablegrapes Reap Rewards Of New Irrigation Upgrade

Victor P Taffa

Robinvale’s tablegrape growers effectively have water on demand, thanks to the completion of a $50 Million high pressure irrigation system.

Water Minister Peter Walsh today opened the upgrade which is the first whole-of-district water high pressure system in north-west Victoria.

“This project has seen Lower Murray Water (LMW) upgrade Robinvale’s entire ageing gravity pipe system to a high pressure pipeline and pump station.” Mr. Walsh said.

“The new network of pipeline is more than 80 km long and services an area of 3,890 hectares of predominantly tablegrapes.”

“The system has resulted in a substantial reduction in lead times for water delivery during peak demand, and improved water quality.” Mr. Walsh said.

“Before the upgrade, the system was limited in its ability to deliver water on demand, creating significant challenges for growers who did not have the capacity to balance moisture and humidity during heatwaves.”

“This upgrade is a great example of how an investment in infrastructure can be used to improve productivity and profitability.” Mr. Walsh said.

The Nationals Member for Mildura Peter Crisp said the upgrade had provided greater certainty for growers.

“The tablegrape industry has faced significant challenges in the past 12 months, between hail, fruit fly and the skyrocketing Australian dollar.” Mr. Crisp said.

“The upgrade will provide confidence in the long-term future of the industry as growers can meet the demanding needs of an expanding market with a 21st century irrigation system.”

LMW chair Michael Tilley said the water authority was proud of the achievements of its staff and contractors throughout the life of the project, and it saw the upgrade as an important way to boost economic and regional development.

The project was funded by Lower Murray Water with a $20 Million contribution from the Victorian Government.