June 13, 2012
ABC Rural’s “Country Hour” dropped in on the South Burnett yesterday, with presenter Neroli Roocke broadcasting the popular lunchtime radio show live from the Booie Range.
Neroli and colleague Caitlyn Gribbin set up their equipment at Crane Wines’ cellar door before speaking to a string of local residents about how our various regional industries are faring.
Crane Wines owner Bernie Cooper and South Burnett Wine Industry Association president Jason Kinsella (Moffatdale Ridge) were positive about wine tourism. There are currently 18 commercial vineyards and 14 cellar doors operating in the region.
John Howard, from the Peanut Company of Australia, said this year’s season would be “average” but that this was actually good in comparison to the past few years – particularly last year, which saw the second lowest peanut intake on record.
Dan Burnet, from Spring Gully Olives at Booubyjan, was less optimistic, saying the local olive industry – at least for boutique growers – was almost at an end because of a combination of climate, the wrong choice of varieties and fungal disease.
Cattle producer Tom Seiler, from the Boondooma tick control committee, emphasised the need for a Tick Control Officer to be based in the South Burnett, saying the region’s “tick-free” status was under threat.