Northern Adelaide Plains Agribusiness Initiative

The Northern Adelaide Plains (NAP) is positioned to become a global leader in intensive food production. The maturity of the industry, proximity to markets and natural growing conditions provide competitive advantages that underpinned development of the largest covered cropping area in Australia; 1,098 hectares in 2018 (PIRSA internal data, 2018). The region generated over one-fifth of South Australia’s horticulture production, approximately 204,455 tonnes of fresh produce, valued at over $313 million (around one-third of state total) in 2016-17 (PIRSA internal data, 2018).

The South Australian Government is supporting agribusiness growth on the NAP through the Northern Adelaide Plains Agribusiness Initiative (NAPAI); an economic development framework to accelerate long-term agribusiness growth. NAPAI brings people and organisations together to realise the vision of transforming the Northern Adelaide Plains into a modern, intensive food production area that is globally competitive.

PIRSA is coordinating government, industry and community efforts to drive investment, generate jobs and address constraints to industry development and productivity.

NAPAI will coordinate the long-term delivery of a wide range of agribusiness-focussed projects that:

  • Increase production and productivity
  • Increase access to infrastructure
  • Support growers to access and connect to international markets
  • Develop industry capability and skills
  • Support the creation of new jobs, new investment and economic growth

The NAPAI framework consists of three primary themes, in line with PIRSA’s Corporate Plan:

  1. Secure production
  2. Increase productivity, and
  3. Enable market access

Key projects operating under the NAPAI framework include:

Secure production projects

The Northern Adelaide Irrigation Scheme (NAIS)

Developing infrastructure to supply 12 GL of recycled, climate independent water for agricultural production on the Northern Adelaide Plains.


Bengy Paolo, NAIS Project Director
Phone: (08) 8429 0202

Jon Mikuzis, Business Development Manager
SA Water
08 7424 1355

Northern Food Bowl Protection Area, Development Plan Amendment

The Food Bowl DPA includes the expansion of Council’s existing Horticultural Policy area and the creation of ‘Precinct 5 Horticulture’.


Rob Veitch
Adelaide Plains Council
Phone: (08) 8527 0200

One Biosecurity Plant Health – Northern Adelaide Plains

Improving productivity and market access for South Australia’s horticulture industry through the development of an Area Wide Management (AWM) group to create a partnership approach to improve biosecurity.


Michelle Carr
PIRSA – Biosecurity SA
Phone: (08) 8429 0351

Northern Adelaide Plains Integrated Irrigation Management Framework (IMF)

Developing partnerships and pathways for collaborative action, including an Integrated Management Framework agreed by institutional stakeholders.


Gerry Davies
PIRSA – Rural Solutions
Phone: (08) 8429 0480

Goyder: Sustainable Expansion Of Irrigated Agriculture and Horticulture on NAP

Filling the gaps in scientific knowledge related to the allocation of water from different sources on long-term soil sustainability for different types of crops, and availability of water at different times of year.


Jim Cox
Phone: (08) 8429 2277

NAP Resource Recovery

Determining strategic direction and priority actions to maximise industry efficiency and regional horticultural resource recovery.


John Pitt
PIRSA – Rural Solutions
Phone: (08) 8842 6261

NAP land Use Planning Review and Reform

Overcoming barriers to sustainable development in relation to land use planning, policy and regulation.


Peter Houston
PIRSA – Rural Solutions
Phone: (08) 8429 0112

Increase productivity projects

Vegetable Extension Network (VEGNET) South Australia

Effectively communicating the latest research and development advancements to growers through regionally based extension.


Hannah McArdle
Phone: (08) 8221 5220

Northern Adelaide Plains Food Cluster

Enhancing collaboration between business, institutions and government to increase the growth and competitiveness of the region.

Tom Madigan
Stretton Centre
Phone: (08) 825 60530

Enable market access projects

Horticulture Export Project

Increasing vegetable exports from the Northern Adelaide Plains through provision of specialist vegetable export advice to individual businesses.


Jordan Brooke-Barnett
Phone: 0140 472 308


For more information on the NAPAI

Bengy Paolo, NAPAI Program Director
Phone: +61 8 8429 0202

Ben Baghurst, NAPAI Program Manager
Phone: +61 8 842 90350

Tamara Rohrlach, Horticulture Account Manager
Phone: +61 8 8429 0408

Page Last Reviewed: 20 Jul 2016
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