1.0 Turf Production and Harvesting

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  1. 1.1
    Land Requirements

    Land used to grow turf needs to meet the following minimum standards: ,

  2. 1.1.1All land where turf is to be produced must not be zoned as more frequent than a 1 in 10 year flood zone.
  3. 1.1.2The total growing area needs to be clearly identified in an aerial map, and each individual paddock identified by name, area and GPS logs.
  4. 1.1.3Land use needs to be in compliance with any applicable local or state government approval requirements.
  5. 1.1.4A documented environmental policy must be in place to reduce run-off and dri from planted areas and needs to comply with applicable local and/or state government approval requirements.
  6. 1.1.5Buffer zones should be in place to protect all defined water courses and need to comply with applicable local and/or state government approval requirements.

 

  1. 1.2 Pre-Planting Documentation

    For all new crop plantings from the date of AusGAP commencement the grower needs to record and provide a self-assessment declaration to AusGAP to certify the following:

  2. 1.2.1 When the existing crop and/or vegetation was first eradicated, and what was used to eradicate it (i.e. product and rate per hectare).
  3. 1.2.2 The dates and rates of follow-up eradication treatments.
  4. 1.2.3 What cultivation methods were used, and dates.
  5. 1.2.4 Any supportive evidence that all existing vegetation has been successfully eradicated. For example sufficient seasonal time has been allowed for existing weed seed and/or pre-existing turf types to germinate between eradication treatments.
  6. 1.2.5 In addition, the grower will provide a sequence of five photos (from close up to full field) showing the area to be visually 100 per cent free of any live vegetative material prior to planting.
  7. 1.2.6 Provide a Self-Assessment declaration that all herbicides used were registered for use in turf production and their use complied with all relevant State and/or Federal legislative requirements
  8. 1.2.7 Extra protocols and inspections introduced by AusGAP for new turf varieties must be adhered to and made known to all staff on AusGAP certified farms.
  1. 1.3 Pre-Planting Inspections

    Once the pre-planting documentation has been submitted, AusGAP will instruct the grower to schedule either a pre-plant inspection with AusGAP or provide a self- assessment declaration that all requirements have been met. Planting cannot commence until the pre-planting inspection/documentation has been satisfactorily completed.

    To obtain certification, the following requirements are to be met on inspection or in the self-assessment declaration:

  2. 1.3.1 Each paddock to be clearly separated from paddocks growing other varieties by a controlled buffer zone (a road for example), or another measure can be demonstrated to prevent cross-contamination.
  1. 1.3.2 Any uncontrolled perennial grass areas or pastures are to be separated from each individual turf crop growing area by a controlled buffer zone or another measure to prevent cross-contamination.
  1. 1.3.3 Wash-down areas and processes to be clearly identified and demonstrated on request prior to planting.
  2. 1.3.4 No living plants of any type are to be identified prior to planting.
  3. 1.3.5 All areas to be planted to be visually free of any disease or insects.
  1. 1.4

    Turf Crop Planting To ensure the on-going genetic or turf-type purity of the turf variety under production, the following minimum standards are to be met:

  2. 1.4.1 Planting rates and methods to be submitted to AusGAP for approval prior to planting if requested.
  3. 1.4.2 All newly planted areas to be treated with a pre-emergent program that is to be submitted to AusGAP for approval if requested.
  4. 1.4.3 Stock from a certified paddock can be used to expand a crop on two occasions subject to approval from AusGAP. (A third and fourth expansion may be permissible, subject to an AusGAP inspection.)
  5. 1.4.4 To maintain full certification, a paddock must be re-inspected every five years. (This may involve DNA and/or grow-out testing.) If re-certification is not granted, an order to destroy and/or re-plant will be issued to the grower.
  1. 1.4.5 Initial stock to be sourced from either a certified foundation farm or the grower’s own pre-certified stock following approval from AusGAP and subject to points 1.4.3 & 1.4.4.
  1. 1.5 Grow-in Phase of Production

    The grow-in phase of production will primarily be monitored by self-assessment, although AusGAP inspectors may inspect at any time. The following requirements are to be met for this phase of production:

  2. 1.5.1 Every effort is to be made and demonstrated to keep weeds, disease and insects to a minimum during production.
  3. 1.5.2 Foreign grass contamination of any type must be actively controlled during the grow- in phase. Random inspections may be carried out by AusGAP inspectors at any time and if contaminants are not being actively controlled, the crop may be placed in quarantine and a re-inspection (at cost) required.
  1. 1.5.3 All mowers and other equipment (including irrigation equipment) are to be thoroughly washed before entering the growing area aer leaving a growing area of another type. Areas under Pivot Irrigation where two or more varieties are grown will need inspection and approval from AusGAP during establishment to ensure cross- contamination does not occur.

NB.  Areas under Pivot Irrigation where two or more varieties are grown may need inspection and approval from AusGAP during establishment to ensure cross- contamination does not occur.

  1. 1.5.4 Fertilisers should be used in accordance with statutory and AusGAP requirements.(see Fertiliser Management).
  2. 1.5.5 All chemicals are used in accordance with product labels and Safety Data Sheets (SDS) and their use needs to comply with any relevant State and/or Federal legislative requirements.
  1. 1.5.6 Documented evidence of the use of correct application equipment and calibration methods is to be provided to AusGAP on request.
  1. 1.6 Existing Turf Crops

  2. 1.6.1 All the requirements of AusGAP will still apply with the exception of the 1.4.2, 1.4.4 and 1.4.5.
  3. 1.6.2 All turf crops will need samples submitted to AusGAP for grow-out testing and possibly future DNA testing if deemed necessary by AusGAP.
  4. 1.6.3 Upon AusGAP inspection any existing crop that does not meet requirements will not gain certification and will be quarantined and not to be offered for sale until certfication requirements are met.

 

  1. 1.7 Fertiliser Management

    All statutory requirements for fertiliser use and storage should be adhered to, as well as the following minimum AusGAP requirements:

  2. 1.7.1 Every AusGAP-certifed crop must undergo an annual soil analysis, with a copy of the results supplied to AusGAP on request at the end of each nancial year along with an amended fertiliser program based on those results.
  3. 1.7.2 As far as practical, fertiliser application must be controlled so as to reduce the incidence of pallet core heat up in harvested turf.
  4. 1.7.3 Detailed records are to be kept on fertiliser application dates, quantities and methods, and supplied to AusGAP at any time on request.
  1. 1.8 Harvesting

    To ensure the highest harvesting standards, the following minimum AusGAP requirements are to be met:

  2. 1.8.1 All harvesting machinery needs to be thoroughly washed before entering paddocks.
  3. 1.8.2 All turf harvesting machinery are to be kept in a serviceable condition in line with best industry practice to ensure the ongoing harvest is of the highest standard.
  4. 1.8.3 Turf must be harvested ‘green as possible’ all year round. In cooler climates, every effort needs to be made to maintain an acceptable harvest colour. The use of frost blankets or application of an organic grass colourant or similar method can adopted to achieve the best seasonal colour.
  1. 1.8.4 Turf to be harvested within a reasonable time frame for the local climate to ensure it will not overheat during the subsequent delivery period.
  1. 1.9 Biosecurity Measures

To ensure the long-term sustainability and viability of the turf industry there are a number of biosecurity measures that should be adhered to in your operation:

  1. 1.9.1 A Farm Biosecurity Policy or statement is in place that includes measures to reduce weed, disease, insect or other pathogen contamination potential from the movement of people, vehicles and equipment to and from farm operations including quarantine protocols should it be required. Biosecurity documentation to be made available to AusGAP on request.
  2. 1.9.2 Appropriate Farm Biosecurity signage is displayed prominently at all farm entrances; no less than stating that visitors respect farm biosecurity and visitors should contact the farm manager prior to entry.
  3. 1.9.3 Any bought-in turf material / fertiliser / manures or other crop inputs are clearly recorded for their source and application areas should a quarantine area be required by AusGAP.
  4. 1.9.4 Procedures and facilities are in place and clearly displayed for the cleaning of machinery and equipment that has the potential to carry contaminants – eg. signs at washdown bay.