Cherry Growers Australia president Andrew Smith said last week all signs were pointing towards a bumper harvest of around 13, 000 tonnes of fruit.By Cathy Walker
He said excellent winter weather and good soil conditions had helped deliver promising early fruit development, giving growers the expectation of a strong flowering followed by a full crop.
Cherry Week was celebrated in Melbourne with a mouth-watering array of dishes in a cherry breakfast and the judging by several prominent restaurateurs and foodies of cherries submitted by various growers, with the blue sash going to Wandin Farms.
Fruit Growers Victoria general manager John Wilson said cherry picking had begun in the Goulburn Valley and to the east, including at Wangaratta.
Mr Wilson said the crop generally looked good across the state, in terms of crop size and fruit size.
He said it was particularly welcome after two years of rain-damage to crops.
Jamie Craig’s company Bunbartha Fruit Packers packs kiwifruit, cherries, plums, apricots and pears.
‘‘Cherries at this stage look good,’’ Mr Craig said.
‘‘Cherries are difficult to estimate, but it looks like it could be a better than average crop.’’
Cherry Growers Australia chief executive Simon Boughey said 80 per cent of the crop was eaten by local consumers and the remaining fifth was exported.
‘‘Thanks to great demand, our industry is on a growth curve — but to sustain increased production and help support regional economies through jobs and investment, we need local consumers to continue to embrace the Aussie cherry season,’’ he said.
Key growing regions outside the Goulburn Valley include the Dandenong Ranges and Yarra Valley; Young, Orange and Bathurst in NSW, the Adelaide Hills and the Riverland area of South Australia, the Huon Valley and Derwent Valley in Tasmania, and the elevated south-west region of Western Australia.
A Tamleugh North farmer has described the theft of four sheep fences from his tornado-damaged property ''a low act''.
Most people at the J C Lowe Oval left on Saturday evening talking about the game but not the result. Pigeon Coach Chris Kennedy summed up the feeling adequately when he said after the game; “it was a frustrating game, but my players weren’t responsible for the frustration.”
The move to extend the Tatura War Memorial area and honour Victoria Cross hero Robert Mactier with the erection of a statue in the Hogan St gardens named in his honour, continues.
A Kyabram man who struck a cyclist on Echuca-Moama bridge with a beer can thrown from the vehicle he was in was convicted and fined $400 in Moama Local Court on Wednesday.
A Rochester mother told a health forum about the devastating effect drugs have had on her family.
Over six hours of junior football is scheduled for Kyabram Recreation Reserve this Sunday.
Ten people were injured after Two Australian Light Armoured Vehicles (ASLAV) collided during a training course at the Puckapunyal Military Training Range in on Wednesday, May 22.
The Finley Apex Sports and Community Centre has secured a $500,000 grant from Regional Development Australia.
A purpose-built bike, equipped with amateur radio, will be on the O'Keefe Rail Trail tomorrow.
Cobram residents John Anderson and Ian Cobb will race down memory lane this weekend when they compete in the annual Historic Winton.
Deniliquin Fire and Rescue's open day has been hailed a success by captain Bill Muirhead.
The Department of Environment and Primary Industries (DEPI) is investigating incidents of abortion or still-births under the Lamb and Kid Mortality Surveillance Project.(LKSMP).
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