MacadamiasThe Australian Macadamia Society represents the biosecurity interests of macadamia producers and the industry. They are members of Plant Health Australia and signatories to the Emergency Plant Pest Response Deed. Their responsibilities include:

  • biosecurity planning and implementation at the national and farm levels
  • liaising with federal and state governments on trade issues
  • funding and supporting biosecurity initiatives
  • participating in national committees and response efforts in an emergency.

Industry overview

Approximately 75 per cent of the crop is exported to Europe, the United States, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and other Asian countries as kernel and to China in-shell. Australia, South Africa and Kenya are currently the world’s largest producers of macadamia. China, United States, the rest of Africa and South America are also significant producers. There are now approximately 800 macadamia growers with 33,000 hectares of crop under planting in Australia. The majority of plantings are varieties of Macadamia integrifolia. Of these, about 75 per cent are Hawaiian varieties, with the remainder being Australian. Five new Australian-bred varieties have been released in the last few years including MCT1, a small precocious and high yielding variety that is proving very popular. Harvest commences in March and runs through to August.

Macadamias are grown along the eastern seaboard of New South Wales and Queensland, from Port Macquarie in the south through to the Atherton Tablelands in the north. Collectively Bundaberg and the Northern Rivers region produce more than 80 per cent of the Australian crop. Production is growing fastest in Bundaberg in Queensland and the Clarence Valley in New South Wales. New plantings are also being developed in Mackay and Maryborough in Queensland and in the Richmond and Clarence Valleys in New South Wales.

Approximately 70 per cent of orchards employ professional pest scouts. The Australian Macadamia Society convenes a forum where pest pressures for the previous season are reviewed and any new pest and disease sightings reported. A number of integrated pest and disease management related research projects are being funded through Hort Innovation, and the society recently distributed over 500 farm biosecurity signs to macadamia growers.

Tree nut IBPBiosecurity Plan for the Tree Nut Industry

Biosecurity planning provides a mechanism for the macadamia industry, government and other relevant stakeholders to assess current biosecurity practices and future biosecurity needs. Planning identifies procedures that can be put in place to reduce the chance of pests reaching our borders or minimise the impact if a pest incursion occurs.

The Biosecurity Plan for the Tree Nut Industry outlines key threats to the industry, risk mitigation plans, identification and categorisation of exotic pests and contingency plans. For a copy, please contact PHA on 02 6215 7700 or email


Promotional item to support the exotic plant pest hotline 1800 084 881

The Maximise your macadamia crop with better pollination brochure, produced by PHA working with Plant and Food Research NZ and Hort Innovation, brings together the science on best-practice for pollination in one place and provides clear steps for growers to assess their pollination during flowering to reduce the risk of pollination failure.

Many growers in Australia rely heavily on the free pollination services offered by wild or unmanaged European honey bees. But honey bees are not always the best pollinator for a crop.

Additional pollination information

Additional fact sheets and web links about the pollination of this crop are listed below. Please be aware that some of the information was developed overseas, and environmental and seasonal variations may occur.

Macadamia pollination fact sheet, The Pollination Program (AgriFutures Australia and Hort Innovation)

The effect of supplementary pollination on nut set of macadamia, University of Queensland and CSIRO research paper, Annals of Botany

Successful bee management tips for during flowering pest management, Australian Macadamia Society

Bees and the pollination of macadamia, University of the Sunshine Coast

Best practice bee management in macadamia, NSW Department of Primary Industries

Exotic pests (not in Australia)

The following is a list of high priority exotic pests of macadamias. These pests were identified during the development of the Biosecurity Plan for the Tree Nut Industry in consultation with industry, government and scientists. They have been assessed as high priority pests based on their potential to enter, establish, and spread in Australia (eg environmental factors, host range, vectors) and the cost to industry of control measures.

PHA has a range of fact sheets, contingency plans and diagnostic protocols relevant to these pests. Pest risk review documents are also available for some pests. Please contact PHA on 02 6215 7700 or email for more information.

Common name Scientific name EPPRD Category Fact sheet Contingency plan Diagnostic protocol
Sudden oak death Phytophthora ramorum 1 FS FS FS CP DP
Tropical nut borer Hypothenemus obscurus FS
Tropilaelaps mites Tropilaelaps clareae and Tropilaelaps mercedessae FS FS
Varroa mites Varroa destructor and Varroa jacobsoni FS FS
Xylella fastidiosa Xylella fastidiosa including X. fastidiosa subsp. multiplex and pauca 2 FS FS FS FS FS FS CP CPDP

Other pests

The following is a list of documents for other exotic and endemic pests of the macadamia industry. Please note that this is not a complete list of pests: rather it includes pests for which documents exist in the Pest Information Document Database.

Some of the documents presented here are not  tailored to the macadamia industry and are included for information only.

Common name Scientific name EPPRD Category Fact sheet Contingency plan Diagnostic protocol
Black twig borer Xylosandrus compactus FS FS
False codling moth Thaumatotibia leucotreta syn Cryptophlebia leucotreta 2 FS CP
Glassy-winged sharpshooter Homalodisca vitripennis FS FS FS FS FS FS FS CP CP
Texas root rot Phymatotrichopsis omnivora (syn Phymatotrichum omnivorum) 2 FS FS