A study of the intra-specific variations and commercial potential of Terminalia ferdinandiana (Exell) (the Kakadu plum)

  • Brian Edward Woods

    Student thesis: Masters by Research - CDU


    The main objective of this study is to examine whether there is a commercial prospect for the species Tenninalia ferdiizandiana Exell. For this there has to be a market, products to sell on that market and producers able to achieve a profit.

    This thesis describes the natural environment of T.ferdinandiana by briefly examining the range of biotic associations in the Wet/Dry tropics, including the specific adaptations of plants to the difficult conditions. The role of fire is included.

    The broader aspects of the family Combretaceae covering the taxonomy, traditional and modern uses are examined.

    The main experimental work was based on a survey of naturally occuring stands of the species. The parameters included height, canopy cover, diameter breast height, vitamin C content and other descriptive features.

    A range of aspects of the possible exploitation of the crop including the potential use of T.ferclinandiana as a timber is examined. A range of possible products developed by the International Food Institute of Queensland is described. A small Australian market is already established for jams and jellies. Expressions of interest in a large-scale juice market have been received from Germany. There is a possibility of a large market for a vitamin C-rich powder. An economic assessment of the production of the fruit calculates an 18.6% return on investments and two local growers are considering the use of part of their land for that purpose.

    All these are essential considerations but at this stage best serve as pointers to work that should he carried out in the future.
    Date of Award1995
    Original languageEnglish
    SupervisorDavid Fenn (Supervisor)

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