Construction work has commenced on the federal governments new PEQ facility in Mickleham. The federally owned site, which is 20 minutes north of Melbourne, will consolidate federal PEQ operations currently across Australia into one site. For our industry this means the PEQ facilities provided for plants in Eastern Creek (NSW) and Knoxfield (VIC) will be combined in the new Mickleham facility.
The plant compound has a capacity of 2000m2 of glasshouse space. This is an increase from the combined 1500m2 capacity at Eastern Creek and Knoxfield. This is supported by 1200m2 of shade house and an integrated diagnostic laboratory capability.
The facility has the capability to house a wide range of plant species with differen
t climatic zones which is achieved through the management of temperature and humidity settings in the glasshouses. It provides a higher level of quarantine containment (QC) in a small QC3 area contained within the broader QC2 boundary.
At this stage it is anticipated that the plant compound building will be completed by the end of March 2015. This will be followed by a commissioning period of testing and proving of the facility with the aim of having the facility online prior to lease end of the Eastern Creek at the end of 2015.
A staged transition of quarantine product will take place prior to the end of the Eastern Creek site lease cessation.
For more information on the future PEQ facility please refer to the Dept. of Agriculture website here.