useful links

other websites

Australian Sandalwood Network
The Australian Sandalwood Network is an active growers group dedicated towards developing the Australian Sandalwood (Santalum spicatum) plantation industry in southern WA. Our main focus is to support private sandalwood growers and drive the plantation industry forward.
www.sandalwood.org.au

 

AVONGRO Wheatbelt Tree Cropping Incorporated
AVONGRO is working with all the key industry stakeholders to develop the tree crop industry and increase plantings in the Avon River Basin. We work with growers, industry, government and communities to develop large scale, profitable tree crop systems that are easy to integrate into wheatbelt systems.

The Avon River Basin tree cropping industry requires significant product and process development to ensure tree cropping will be integrated into mainstream agriculture on the scale needed to deliver triple bottom line benefits ie. economic, social and environmental benefits.
www.avongro.com.au

 

Wheatbelt Natural Resource Management
Wheatbelt Natural Resource Management Inc is an independent community-based organisation leading natural resource management (NRM), endeavours within the Avon River Basin.
www.wheatbeltnrm.org.au

 

media releases

 Mt Marshall Sandalwood – a Win, Win, Win Story for the Region

Over the next 20 to 25 years Mt Marshall Sandalwood will facilitate the planting of up to 2500ha per year of biodiverse sandalwood ecosystems in the NE wheatbelt. A target of 50,000 hectares of agriculturally unproductive Wodjil soils will become productive sandalwood and local species host trees for the benefit of land managers, local regional community and the environment. These fragile soils make up a substantial part of the farming land in the North East area of the wheatbelt. They have been traditionally difficult to farm as they are highly acidic, aluminium toxic and prone to wind erosion.

The early economy of the area was forged by the hard work of sandalwood pullers who not only opened up country for agriculture but provided much of the fledgling state’s revenue through export of valuable sandalwood harvests to Asia. Wodjil soils were identified by pioneers as being the source of the biggest and best sandalwood.

‘We know from experience, that we can successfully grow the hosts and Sandalwood on these unproductive Wodjil soils’ says Bencubbin farmer, Michael Hogan’ as he stands in his own  healthy Sandalwood plantation. Michael has established over 100ha of biodiverse Sandalwood plantings. ‘This is my superannuation” he jokes, knowing he is on to good thing.

During early April 2011 a group of enthusiastic individuals met in Bencubbin under the auspices of the Master Tree Grower program. Their mission was to examine the idea of a sustainable and economically viable large scale Sandalwood Industry based around growing and harvesting the valuable timber and oil rich seed of the native Australian sandalwood tree. Local farmers, government and NRM representatives, landowners from other parts of the wheatbelt and professionals from the city were given top notch financial analysis showing a conservative 14% IRR over 25years to growers of Sandalwood nuts and timber!

Mt Marshall Sandalwood has been formed through a desire to see a brighter future for farming communities in the NE wheatbelt. Broadscale sandalwood growing can be an avenue to greater prosperity and resilience in the region. Farmers will be assisted to establish plantations on their land and will retain full ownership of their land, the trees, the harvest of seed and timber and any carbon rights arising in the future. Mt Marshall Sandalwood will provide growers with processing facilities, markets and advance of research.

The Australian Sandalwood Network has been very supportive of the project and has received funding for demonstration sites and workshops from the Wheatbelt NRM Soil Conservation Incentives Program. ‘The pilot project aims to demonstrate both practically and theoretically the advantages of large scale sandalwood plantings and to encourage a change in people’s idea of future land use’ said Bethan Lloyd, spokesperson for the ASN.

‘It is a win, win, win situation’ says local sandalwood guru, Bob Huxley. ‘The farmer wins, the environment wins and the community wins.’

Download Media Release: Davies Launches Mt Marshall Sandalwood Project