Macadamia is a rapidly expanding international tree nut crop industry, although it represents less than 2% of current world nut production. Macadamias produce delicate, high-valued kernels (Anon, 2018). Macadamia F. Muell is a genus in the Proteaceae family and grows naturally in the subtropical rainforest of Eastern Australia (Hardner et al., 2009). Although small orchards initially were planted in Australia in the late 1800s following European settlement, the crop was principally developed as a commercial crop in Hawaii from the 1920s (Hardner et al., 2009). Hawaii was the main global producer of macadamia until the mid-1990s. In 2017, the major producers were South Africa (24%), Australia (23%), Kenya (16%), and Hawaii (10%) (Anon, 2018). Production is expected to double from 2017 to 2022, particularly due to major increase in production in China, but also due to development of new production areas (Anon, 2018)
There are many challenges that limit improved productivity of macadamia, given the short time of cultivation. Although research is being undertaken in many countries to address these challenges, the relatively small size of the industry in each country means that there are opportunities to more efficiently address common challenges by improving communication among the international macadamia research community.
The 2017 International Macadamia Research Symposium was held on 13 and 14 Sept. in Hilo, HI. The symposium attracted 99 attendees from Australia, Brazil, China, Haiti, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Poland, Switzerland, and the United States (Fig. 1). A total of 11 students attended. This paper reviews the oral and poster presentations made at the 2017 International Macadamia Research Symposium, held to support greater communication among the international community of macadamia researchers. This is the first international macadamia research meeting since 1992 (Bittenbender, 1993).
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Hardner, C., Costa e Silva, J., Williams, E., Meyers, N. & McConchie, C. 2019 Breeding new cultivars for the Australian macadamia industry HortScience 54 621 628
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Howlett, B.G., Read, S.F.J., Alavi, M., Cutting, B.T., Nelson, W.R., Goodwin, R.M., Cross, S., Thorp, T.G. & Pattemore, D.E. 2019 Cross-pollination enhances macadamia yields, even with branch-level resource limitation HortScience 54 609 615
Nock, C.J., Baten, A., Barkla, B.J., Furtado, A., Henry, R.J. & King, G.J. 2016 Genome and transcriptome sequencing characterises the gene space of Macadamia integrifolia (Proteaceae) BMC Genomics 17 937
O’Connor, K., Hayes, B., Hardner, C., Alam, M. & Topp, B. 2019 Selecting for nut characteristics in macadamia using a genome wide association study HortScience 54 629 632
O’Hare, T.J., Trieu, H.H., Topp, B., Russell, D., Pun, S., Torrisi, C. & Liu, D. 2019 Assessing fatty acid profiles of macadamia nuts HortScience 54 633 637
Toft, B.D., Alam, M.M., Wilkie, J.D. & Topp, B.L. 2019 Phenotypic association of multi-scale architectural traits with canopy volume and yield: Moving toward high-density systems for macadamia HortScience 54 596 602
Zhao, X., Dong, Q., Ni, S.B., He, X.Y., Yue, H., Tao, L., Nie, Y., Tang, C.S., Zhang, F.Q. & Shen, J. 2019 Rhizosphere processes and nutrient management for improving nutrient-use efficiency in macadamia production HortScience 54 603 608