New Woolies labelling supports NQ primary producers

Posted by Nicole Eckersley on 19th October 2010

Queensland Premier Anna Bligh last week launched a new initiative, in conjunction with  Woolworths, designed boost to primary producers in North Queensland.

Woolworths has introduced “Nth Qld Grown” labelling in its supermarkets across North Queensland, so that customers can easily identify locally grown produce.

“This is a fantastic initiative by Woolworths to promote locally grown produce and make it easier for consumers to identify North Queensland produce in North Queensland stores,”Bligh said.

“North Queensland agribusiness generates in excess of $3 billion in farm gate value each year and the industry is growing at 5 per cent per annum,” said Bligh.

Mr Tony Klatt, Woolworths’ Produce Operations Manager in Queensland, said the move is part of Woolworths’ longstanding commitment to agriculture in North Queensland and to providing customers with the highest quality fresh foods.

Klatt said the new labelling had been driven by strong feedback from shoppers.

“Our customers have made it clear they want more information about locally grown fresh food so they can choose to support the local agricultural industry when they shop,” Klatt said.

“Depending on seasonality, local produce such as; bananas, potatoes, pumpkins, fancy leaf lettuce, green beans, fresh herbs, corn, paw paws, papaya and honeydew melon can be found in our fresh fruit & vegetables departments. Subject to availability, seafood lines will include barramundi, mackerel and snapper.”

“Our Nth Queensland grown initiative is not a promotion or marketing gimmick – this is a long term commitment to North Queensland farmers,” Klatt said.

Minister for Primary Industries, Fisheries and Rural and Regional Queensland,
Tim Mulherin, said North Queensland farmers produced some of the best fruit and vegetables in the world, including capsicum, tomatoes, eggplant, cucumber, mangoes and lemons.

“This initiative by Woolworths is another way consumers can identify these top quality local products grown right here in NQ,” Mulherin said.

“I encourage other supermarkets to follow suit as this campaign will empower consumers to be able to make the choice to support locally grown products.”

Member for Townsville Mandy Johnstone said the prominent “Nth Qld Grown” labelling would appear on all North Queensland sourced fresh fruit and vegetables and fresh seafood.

“The labelling will clearly identify what produce comes from North Queensland and we’ll be supporting our local farmers and local jobs every time we buy food with one of these labels on it,” Ms Johnstone said.

Member for Mundingburra Lindy Nelson-Carr said North Queensland was well known for its excellent produce.

“This is a great opportunity for North Queensland residents to show their support for North Queensland farmers and commercial fishermen who produce great quality fruit, vegetables and seafood products,” Ms Nelson-Carr said.

Member for Thuringowa Craig Wallace said Woolworths stores across North Queensland were getting involved and were already displaying the labels.

“This is a fantastic initiative and our local farmers and producers will be pleased to know that Woolworths has now rolled out “Nth Qld Grown” labelling to 34 of its supermarkets across the region so that customers can easily identify North Queensland grown produce,” Mr Wallace said.