Latest news in Australian food
It’s been a good week for our fruit growers. Along with a new interim trade agreement with India, which will eliminate tariffs on a range of Aussie fruit, a new citrus research centre has been launched with the aim of helping our growers to adapt for the future. Also making Australian food news this week, a South Australian dairy brand creates milk that helps fight climate change and Victorian queen bees take the world’s most expensive taxi ride. Plus, we’ve got the best seafood choices for your Good Friday feast, and some chocolatey Easter treats that will help to support endangered native wildlife.
Fruitful opportunity for Aussie growers
The horticulture industry has welcomed the signing of an interim agreement between Australia and India. The interim agreement will see tariff elimination over seven years on a variety of Australian horticulture products. These include blueberries, avocados, onions, cherries, asparagus, lettuce and celery. Other significant gains for the sector include an immediate halving of the tariff within the tariff rate quota for oranges and mandarins.
New investment in NSW citrus
A new Citrus Centre of Excellence in Griffith could help citrus farmers adapt to the future. The state’s citrus industry is set to benefit from the centre’s work in research and new technologies, which will help growers improve production practices. It’s welcome news for the sector, which has been hit hard by recent storms. Some citrus farms suffered huge amounts of damage and will take years to recover. Local NSW Farmers Horticulture Committee member Jo Brighenti Barnard says the investment will unlock more opportunities for farmers to thrive. It will also provide more economic returns for NSW.
Carbon-neutral SA dairy
One of Australia’s largest bio-dynamic organic dairies, Paris Creek Farms will now be producing its entire range of organic dairy products using carbon-neutral milk sourced from South Australian dairy farms. Paris Creek’s farmers abide by the principles of bio-dynamic organic farming. They also have fewer cows per hectare than other, larger dairies. This further helps to lower overall emissions. The company’s commitment to carbon neutrality will also be supplemented by the purchase of carbon credits. Nice work, guys!
Fishing for an Easter feed?
It has long been customary to eat seafood on Good Friday. Easter is also one of the busiest times for our fishmongers. According to Seafood Industry Australia (SIA), popular choices this year are tipped to include barramundi, Tasmanian Atlantic salmon, coral trout, blue swimmer crab and, of course, prawns. “If you’re not sure what to put on your menu this year, head to your fishmonger or seafood counter at the supermarket to ask about what’s in season,” says SIA CEO Veronica Papacosta.“We recommend people ask about underutilised species. They can be as delicious as their better-known counterparts, at a fraction of the price.” To find Aussie seafood near you, head to the Great Australian Seafood Fish Finder.
Bonza deal for Australian food producers
In a first for global aviation, Australia’s new low-cost carrier Bonza has announced its commitment to exclusively serve Australian food and drinks onboard. The airline says its onboard menu will consist of 100 percent Australian snacks, meals and drinks. It’s part of its commitment to being “here for Allstralia”. The commitment has been welcomed by producers; they say it’s a win-win for their industry. Many of these producers also run tourism businesses. New low-cost flights to regional Australia mean more visitors to cellar doors, guided tours, wineries and farm-based accommodation.
A chariot fit for a queen
Queen bees are normally transported to their future hive through the post. But an overreliance on the postal system and the lack of alternative transport have been wreaking havoc for bees. Sadly, some queen bees have died in transit. To help our queens reach their destination, B Honey created the “Queen Bee Chariot” with Silver Top Taxis. The service picked up queen bees sooner and delivered them faster (in an air-conditioned vehicle) than the usual postal route. The initiative kicked off in February, delivering select queen bees across Victoria until the end of the queen bee breeding season last week.
Sydney Show celebrates milestone
The Sydney Royal Easter Show kicked off yesterday and will run until April 19. First held in 1823, the Easter Show is Australia’s largest annual ticketed event; it attracts an average of more than 850,000 attendees. The event is run by the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW (RAS), and this year is a special one. The RAS is celebrating 200 years since its inception. Revenue generated by the show allows the RAS to invest in programs designed to promote agricultural excellence and keep our rural communities strong. For more info about what’s on as well as to buy tickets, head to eastershow.com.au.
Support endangered native wildlife this Easter
Australians are being urged to help support endangered koalas and bilbies in the lead-up to Easter. Australian owned and made confectionery company Fyna Foods has partnered with Currumbin Wildlife Hospital and Save the Bilby Fund to help raise funds. Thirty cents from every Australian Bush Friends Bilby purchase will go to Save the Bilby Foundation; 30 cents from every chocolate Wombat and Koala goes to Currumbin Wildlife Hospital. You can find the Australian Bush Friends by Pink Lady range in Myer, David Jones and Target stores as well as in independents such as Ritchies, Drakes and selected IGAs.
How do Aussies like their hot cross buns?
Toasted, fresh, with or without butter… There are many ways to eat hot cross buns. So which way is the Australian favourite? Canstar Blue’s special Easter survey of more than 2500 consumers reveals the majority (60%) like their buns toasted or warmed with a good spread of butter or margarine. No surprises there. One in five just like to eat them straight out of the bag. Only four percent are more experimental, choosing jam and other non-traditional spreads. When it comes to bun types, fruit (43%) is the top choice for Australian hot cross bun consumers. Chocolate (24%) and plain (15%) follow.
Australian plant-based snack brand Fancy Plants will be slinging out 20,000 free vegan desserts for Earth Day (April 22). A colourful dessert truck will be popping up in Federation Square in Melbourne on Earth Day as well as Sydney’s Bondi Beach on April 20. People can pick from a decadent choc pudding, a retro-style vanilla rice pud or chia pods in vanilla and choc flavours. Fancy Plants has also teamed up with The Tree Project to plant trees for those who attend to help them lower their carbon load. If you can’t make it, you can still sign up for the “Plants for the Planet” program. It will plant a tree on your behalf.
Also in Australian food news this week…
Did you know that almost all Aussies aren’t getting enough vitamin D? To help you up your intake, we shared the best food sources of D, as well as how much you need. Most Aussies aren’t eating enough nuts, either. But the industry has big plans to change that. To give them a helping hand, we dished up two tasty chocolate treats featuring Aussie nuts. For diehard foodies, we also listed just some of the many upcoming food festivals across Australia. And finally, we profiled Sourdough Crumpet Co, which makes organic, 100 percent sourdough crumpets by hand. And they are truly out of this world.
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