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SOCIAL PHOTOS: Stone fruit growers celebrate a sweet summer

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Master Grocers Association director Ross Anile, Bridgetown-based Edenvale Orchard owner Anthony Fullam and Karragullen-based Di Marco & sons owner John Di Marco at the WA Stone Fruit Industry Season Launch at The Shoe in Yagan Square.
Camera IconMaster Grocers Association director Ross Anile, Bridgetown-based Edenvale Orchard owner Anthony Fullam and Karragullen-based Di Marco & sons owner John Di Marco at the WA Stone Fruit Industry Season Launch at The Shoe in Yagan Square. Credit: John Koh/The West Australian

WA growers, suppliers and retailers came together on December 7 to celebrate the start of the 2022 stone fruit season.

Orchardists from as far afield as Carnarvon and Bridgetown took a well-earned break from tending their crop to have their hard work acknowledged by WA Agriculture Minister Alannah MacTiernan at a special event at Yagan Square.

In officially opening the event, called the 2022 Stone Fruit Industry Season Launch, Ms Mactiernan highlighted the importance of continuing to build the capacity of stone fruit growers and the stone fruit industry.

She said this was crucial to meet challenges associated with soil health and nutrition, biosecurity, labour supply and costs.

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It was also essential to help farmers with market expansion, productivity, embracing new technologies that improve yield and quality, water and land availability, climatic variations and helping growers considering implementing regenerative farming systems.

WA Stonefruit Producers Committee chair Danny Di Marco said buying in-season stone fruit meant supporting local growers, creating jobs and reducing food miles.

He said buying local would also ensure juicer, tastier and longer-lasting fruit because it would remain on the tree for longer.

“We encourage Western Australians to support their local growers and your local economy this Christmas by making your first pick for the season from the fruit bin a juicy WA-grown apricot, nectarine, peach, plum and cherry,” he said.

Mr Di Marco said that the size of the stone fruit crop for WA this coming season would remain strong, with production of fresh juicy plums being higher than the previous year.

According to the Agricultural Produce Commission, overall reported production of WA stone fruit has remained steady against 2021, with 8239 tonnes of produce against 8208 tonnes in 2021.

A total 96 per cent of the reported tonnage this year would be plums, nectarines and peaches.

The season launch marked the third year of this “whole of WA stone fruit supply chain collaboration celebration”, which promotes the benefits of buying fresh, superior, healthy and delicious stone fruit grown in WA.

The event was was co-ordinated by the WA Stonefruit Producers’ Committee, with support from Buy West Eat Best and Perth NRM. Festivities included a rolling WA seasonal stone fruit slideshow on the Digital Tower in Yagan Square.

Attendees enjoyed new season stone fruit-inspired dishes, with representatives from a range of groups including Pomewest, AgriFresh, WA Citrus, the Bee Industry Council, WA Potatoes and more.

Master Grocers Association director Ross Anile, Bridgetown-based Edenvale Orchard owner Anthony Fullam and Karragullen-based Di Marco & sons owner John Di Marco at the WA Stone Fruit Industry Season Launch at The Shoe in Yagan Square.
Camera IconMaster Grocers Association director Ross Anile, Bridgetown-based Edenvale Orchard owner Anthony Fullam and Karragullen-based Di Marco & sons owner John Di Marco at the WA Stone Fruit Industry Season Launch at The Shoe in Yagan Square. Credit: John Koh/The West Australian
Buy West Eat Best program manager Melissa Worthington, with project officer Elan Coleman, retail marketing officer Brigitte Jarvie, and project officer Tara Cooke. John Koh
Camera IconBuy West Eat Best program manager Melissa Worthington, with project officer Elan Coleman, retail marketing officer Brigitte Jarvie, and project officer Tara Cooke. John Koh Credit: John Koh/The West Australian
VegetablesWA chairman Dan Kuzmicich, Perth Natural Resource Management chief executive Keith Pekin, and DPIRD principal trade consultant Jim Paparo. John Koh
Camera IconVegetablesWA chairman Dan Kuzmicich, Perth Natural Resource Management chief executive Keith Pekin, and DPIRD principal trade consultant Jim Paparo. John Koh Credit: John Koh/The West Australian
WA Citrus committee member Daniel Ying, and DPIRD research scientist Andrew Taylor. John Koh
Camera IconWA Citrus committee member Daniel Ying, and DPIRD research scientist Andrew Taylor. John Koh Credit: John Koh/The West Australian
Woolworths assistant fruit buyer Joe Rando and Karragullen Cool Storage manager Steve Mortimer. John Koh
Camera IconWoolworths assistant fruit buyer Joe Rando and Karragullen Cool Storage manager Steve Mortimer. John Koh Credit: John Koh/The West Australian
Springhill Orchard grower Mike Granchiga, Mercer Mooney supply coordinator Sue Paparusis, and Mercer Mooney director Bruno Delsimone. John Koh
Camera IconSpringhill Orchard grower Mike Granchiga, Mercer Mooney supply coordinator Sue Paparusis, and Mercer Mooney director Bruno Delsimone. John Koh Credit: John Koh/The West Australian
Leotta Nominees orchardist Franka Leotta and Della Pollina Operations fruit picker Ivana Della Pollina.. John Koh
Camera IconLeotta Nominees orchardist Franka Leotta and Della Pollina Operations fruit picker Ivana Della Pollina.. John Koh Credit: John Koh/The West Australian
Di Marco & Sons grower Sue DI Marco and Leotta Nominees grower Marina Leotta. John Koh
Camera IconDi Marco & Sons grower Sue DI Marco and Leotta Nominees grower Marina Leotta. John Koh Credit: John Koh/The West Australian
Perth NRM chairwoman Elena Limnios and Wheatbelt Developement Commission acting cheif executive I-Lyn Loo. John Koh
Camera IconPerth NRM chairwoman Elena Limnios and Wheatbelt Developement Commission acting cheif executive I-Lyn Loo. John Koh Credit: John Koh/The West Australian
Della Pollina A owner Mark Della Polina and Josie Della Pollina. John Koh
Camera IconDella Pollina A owner Mark Della Polina and Josie Della Pollina. John Koh Credit: John Koh/The West Australian
Buy West Eat Best project officer Elan Coleman, with project officer Tara Cooke and retail marketing officer Brigitte Jarvie. John Koh
Camera IconBuy West Eat Best project officer Elan Coleman, with project officer Tara Cooke and retail marketing officer Brigitte Jarvie. John Koh Credit: John Koh/The West Australian
Buy West Eat Best program manager Melissa Worthington, WA Agriculture Minister Alannah MacTiernan, and Wheatbelt Development Commission acting chief executive I-Lyn Loo. John Koh
Camera IconBuy West Eat Best program manager Melissa Worthington, WA Agriculture Minister Alannah MacTiernan, and Wheatbelt Development Commission acting chief executive I-Lyn Loo. John Koh Credit: John Koh/The West Australian

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