The time has come for our region’s producers to check their vital signs and prepare for what the UN has dubbed to be the international ‘year of the pulses’.
An essential ingredient for a healthy heart, pulses make up a nutritious food group that holds massive export potential along with promises to improve world food security.
“Pulses can contribute significantly in addressing hunger, food security, malnutrition, environmental challenges and human health,” says UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.
The UN announcement came as Queensland celebrates one of its most successful chickpea seasons to date.
Queensland’s chickpea production increased seven fold between 1995 and 2005, and has continued to grow ever since.
“The demand coming from India is that high that the prices are very strong so we are able to get a lot more growers planting chickpeas and mungbeans so our production has increased… at this stage we see the same for 2016 and 2016,” says Selected Pulse Foods manager, Brett McIntyre.
Last year, Queensland’s chickpea production of 400,000 tonne accounted for almost half the national production.
The sunshine state also lead the way with mungbeans, producing 70,000 tonne which accounted for 63 per cent of the domestic harvest.
In light of these encouraging figures, Mr McIntyre says there is still room for Queensland growers to expand into the pulse market.
“Queensland and New South Wales are very good pulse producing areas,” he says.
With global demands on the rise, producers are encouraged to keep their fingers on the pulse and invest in these nutritious crops… after all, they come with the UN tick of approval!