ABC News Australia

Invasive insect fall armyworm on the march, but scientists fight back with an oozing virus and an egg-attacking wasp

A virus that oozes out through a caterpillar’s skin before exterminating it is being investigated as a way to combat an invasive insect that is devastating some Australian crops.Key points:Invasive fall armyworm has spread through most of AustraliaAn emergency permit now allows the use of a virus against itBeneficial insects are helping farmers fight fall…

This humane breakthrough in feral pig control targets pigs’ weakest part: their stomachs

A newly released poison bait is being hailed as a major breakthrough in feral pig control.Key points:Feral pigs are one of Australia’s most destructive pest speciesThere are an estimated 24 million and numbers are rising following recent good seasonsA new poison, thought to be more humane, is about to gain regulatory approval for use in the United StatesFeral…

A lot of us have turned to shopping online during the pandemic, it seems farmers did the same

During the global pandemic a lot of us have turned to online shopping —  including farmers.Key points:Online selling platform AuctionsPlus saw turnover increase by $1 billion in the past 12 months.Online machinery sales boomed in particular, up 428 per cent One of Australia’s first “online sales” required a generator to run the fax machine.The nation’s largest online platform for livestock…

It’s never been more expensive to buy beef, and the price looks set to ‘explode’ further

Beef prices have “exploded”, according to one butcher, as the Eastern Young Cattle Indicator (EYCI) breaks through the $10 per kilogram barrier, up a massive 150 per cent in just two years.Key points:The Eastern Young Cattle Indicator breaks $10/kg barrierRecord sale yard prices are expected to flow through to retailSellers are happy but processors are losing…

More Australian wines on overseas tables, just not in China

Australia’s wine exports to the United Kingdom have reached their highest level in a decade, but China remains the most lucrative market for Australian winemakers for now. Key points:Australian wine exports in 2020–21 fell 10 per cent in value, to $$2.56 billion, over those in 2019–20Exports to the United Kingdom are at their highest level in 10 yearsExcluding mainland…