In this edition
In this edition we meet the Templeton family from the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, who are Australia's largest growers of ginger. This is a story with a twist!!

We also look at the fruit and vegetable supply for the month, and how the events of February have shaped the Market.

And, we remember that for many, the last month has been a terrible time in their life, and how the Brisbane Market community has banded together to lend a hand.


Grower Profile - A .Templeton and Son Ginger
I always like to ask our growers this question: ”What do you like to do outside farming?”

I ask this question for two reasons, firstly because it gives us all a chance to get to know our growers a little better, and secondly, because I know what a demanding lifestyle farming can be, the manner in which our growers choose to spend their precious spare time should be cherished and supported by us all.

So you can imagine my surprise, when I asked Kylie Templeton from Templeton’s Ginger what the Templeton family got up to in their spare time and her answer was simple:

“Ballroom dancing.”

Fantastic!! What a story to tell!

“We also have a dance studio and we all teach ballroom dancing” said Kylie.
“It is my father’s passion. My dad, John, has been operating the dance studio for over 20 years. In fact, we have our own ballroom next to the shed!”

“Farmers by day and dancers by night.”

So what might that tell you about the Templeton family? If you have ever tried to learn to dance, what it tells you is that this family is certainly one that is dedicated to perfecting an art. The studio is an institution on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland. And equally, Templeton’s Ginger is an institution amongst the growing community.

As Australia’s largest ginger producers, the Templeton’s have been working hard to produce the finest ginger available.

“We produce around 2500 tonnes of ginger each year out of our properties.” said Kylie.

“Our supply is year round. We supply all the central produce markets and also the Ginger Factory at Yandina – Australia’s major ginger processing plant.”

The Templeton’s grow ginger on their properties at Eumundi, Kybong, Kennilworth and Kandanga – in all some 150 acres under ginger per year. The farm (s) have been in the family for over 65 years, started by Kylie’s grandfather.

“This is certainly a family enterprise. Both Shane and I are the third generation to work this land. We both went off and did other things for a while – Shane (Kylie’s bother) went to University to study business, and I also left the farm for a time, but we both came back and play central roles in operating the properties.”

“I look after the marketing and the packing. I deal with all the central markets,” said Kylie.

“Shane manages all of the growing and harvesting as well as all the accounting. His wife, Julie, helps to administer the farm, which is a crucial role as we have around 80 staff working with us at a time. It is a true family concern. “

The Templeton’s also own around 500 head of beef cattle which they have as a side enterprise, but also use the cattle to spell the land while they rotate their crops.

“The cattle are a nice sideline, but they are an important part of our farm management strategy.”

Queensland’s Sunshine Coast has the perfect climate for growing ginger. However, the location also poses some difficulties for growers. Issues such as suburban encroachment and just simply the cost of land are always going to be a problem for Sunshine Coast growers as the corridor grows.

But the biggest issue for many growers has been Traveston Dam. The dam, which has been earmarked by the Queensland Government as a major part of their water conservation strategy, has seen the resumption of hectares of land south ogf Gympie, Traveston Crossing and surrounds.

“Traveston Dam has caused so many problems. The land in this area was cheaper than most of the Sunshine Coast and you could still pick up large tracks of land for a reasonable price. We are always trying to increase production, but the viability becomes an issue when the availability of large tracks of land and the cost of this land is considered,” said Kylie.

“But we will continue to monitor the situation and work out the best way forward.”

And I’m sure that the Templeton’s will continue to put their best feet forward for many years to come.

Thoughts with Fire and Flood Victims
The floods in North Queensland and the Victorian Bushfires have been devastating for all who all who have been at the mercy of nature in recent weeks.

The tragic loss of life in Victoria has shocked the nation and somewhat overshadowed the difficulties faced by flood victims in North Queensland.
With offers of assistance pouring in, Brismark and Brisbane Markets Limited have made sizeable contributions to each of the Victorian Bushfire Appeal and the Premiers Disaster Relief Appeal for the flood victims.

There have also been many offers by wholesalers and transporters in the Brisbane Markets wanting to send fresh produce and other household goods to the disaster victims, however, this has been put on hold for now as both the Red Cross and the Salvation Army have asked that goods and foodstuffs not be sent due to the logistical problems in the affected regions.

With communities wiped out in Victoria and almost two-thirds of Queensland's land mass affected by flooding, the thousands of homeless most need financial help to rebuild the communities hardest hit.

And Australia has risen to the challenge with millions of dollars raised in the past week.

Amongst the terrifying scenes that have been on our televisions night after night, there have been outstanding acts of heroism and heartbreaking stories of the victims.

At the same time as bushfires raged through Victoria, Tully and Ingham were hit hard by North Queensland's worst flooding in more than 30 years as a result of Cyclone Ellie.

Banana plantations that were only just recovering from Cyclone Larry in 2006 have once again been damaged by the water and while it is too early to calculate the losses, many expect that it will be in the millions of dollars.
Bananas are just one of the many crops that have been damaged or unable to be transported south due to the temporary closure of the Bruce Highway by floodwaters.

There are many other crops that will be affected and consumers will see fluctuations in prices over the coming weeks.

The full impact of the heatwave, fires and floods is not yet known but it is expected that supplies for fresh fruits and vegetables from the affected areas will vary over coming months.

Our thoughts are with all who have lost so much.

Story courtesy of Brisbane Markets Ltd.

This month in Fruit
Extreme heat and the bushfires in Victoria and flooding in North Queensland have certainly had an impact on the Markets and the availability and price of many lines.

Chris Georgiou from Pershouse Produce fruit sales said that while the new season gala’s were in full swing, the Victorian apple crop has been battered by the weather, which is having an impact on the apple supply.

“The Victorian heat has resulted in some major damage to the apple crop down there. Growers anticipate that around 40% of the crop has been damaged, meaning that supplies will tighten a little in the coming weeks.” said Chris.

“In regards to other lines, we are at the tail end of the mango and stone fruit season and moving into the more commodity lines as the summer fruits and some exotics go out of season.”

Bananas have been an issue with supplies cut due to the weather preventing transport to the markets. Prices have been high as a result of the supply shortage, but with the roads opening up, product is getting back to normal supply levels.

Rob Mann from Pershouse Produce tomato sales believes that the tomato market should start to settle by the end of the month.

“For most of this month we have had a real flush of tomatoes on the market. Combined with the wet weather, the market has been backed up, but it is starting to steady now” said Rob.

This month in Vegetables
The heat has also had an impact on most vegetable lines with Victorian grown produce supplies being greatly affected.

In general, prices for most vegetable lines have been higher than normal, but the most significant rises have been from lines currently being sourced from down south.

Brocolli and cauliflower supplies have been short and as a result, these lines have been more expensive, with ginger and shallots also a little higher than normal.

Capsicums have just started to come back, while zucchini is in high demand with prices reflecting its popularity.

Chokoes are also just starting to arrive on the markets.

There have been plenty of washed potatoes on the markets, with more of an oversupply situation. The prices have been average for this time of year and while potatoes were weather affected in the early part of February, the quality is better now.

Joke of the Month
Husband Store.

A store that sells new husbands opened in New York City , where a woman may go to choose a husband. Among the instructions at the entrance is a description of how the store operates:

You may visit this store ONLY ONCE! There are six floors and the value of the products increase as the shopper ascends the flights. The shopper may choose any item from a particular floor, or may choose to go up to the next floor, but you cannot go back down except to exit the building!

So, a woman goes to the Husband Store to find a husband. On the first floor the sign on the door reads:

Floor 1 - These men Have Jobs
She is intrigued, but continues to the second floor, where the sign reads:

Floor 2 - These men Have Jobs and Love Kids.
'That's nice,' she thinks, 'but I want more.'

So she continues upward. The third floor sign reads:
Floor 3 - These men Have Jobs, Love Kids, and are Extremely Good Looking.
'Wow,' she thinks, but feels compelled to keep going.

She goes to the fourth floor, and the sign reads:
Floor 4 - These men Have Jobs, Love Kids, are Drop-dead Good Looking and Help With Housework.

'Oh, mercy me!' she exclaims, 'I can hardly stand it!'

Still, she goes to the fifth floor and the sign reads:
Floor 5 - These men Have Jobs, Love Kids, are Drop-dead Gorgeous, Help with Housework, and Have a Strong Romantic Streak.

She is so tempted to stay, but she goes to the sixth floor, where the sign reads:
Floor 6 - You are visitor 31,456,012 to this floor. There are no men on this floor. This floor exists solely as proof that women are impossible to please. Thank you for shopping at the Husband Store.

To avoid gender any bias charges, the store's owner opened a New Wives store just across the street.

The first floor has wives that love sex.

The second floor has wives that love sex and have money and like beer.

The third, fourth, fifth and sixth floors have never been visited

Here is a list of just some of the produce available right now* at Pershouse Produce

Broad beans
Brussel Sprouts
Butter Beans

Honeydew Melon
Kipfler Potatoes

Okra Beans

Spring Onions
Sth Gold Potatoes
Sweet Potatoes

*subject to supply conditions.

If you have a story or article that you think would make a great addition to Fresh Perspective contact;

Laura Koman
Ph: 07 3379 3034

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