“Producing for national and overseas export markets.”
Agriculture in the North Burnett region is both abundant and diverse. Primary industries account for the major income and include citrus, beef, fodder crops such as lucerne, small crops, pork, broad acre crops, mining, timber and milk production.
The area is home to one of the leading citrus producing regions in Australia. Local packing and processing co-operatives supply national and international markets with fresh produce and large quantities of juice concentrate are produced for use by major beverage companies.
The citrus industry fosters a number of highly successful producers with strong business expertise that will take advantage of market development opportunities with healthy foods, skill building and best practice irrigation methods being the focus to ensure future sustainability.
Other horticultural crops successfully grown include table grapes, stone fruit, mangoes, avocadoes, rock melons, potatoes, peanuts and asparagus. The population in the region often swells during harvest time with the influx of Australian and overseas workers. Traditional field crops grown include lucerne, barley, wheat, sorghum and pasture legumes. Many growers have diversified into or are using bean crops such as soya and navy beans in their rotational plan.
Beef and Dairy
Historically, the region had a strong base in beef and dairy production. While many smaller family run dairies have disappeared some larger operations are experiencing expansion around Mundubbera and Monto.
Beef on the other hand still enjoys a strong following with a meat works in Biggenden and selling complexes operating in Biggenden, Eidsvold and Monto. Regular sales are held at all centres and major meat works buyers and restockers give strong support. The opportunity to utilize local grain and hay production has seen the development of a number of feedlots in the region to add value to product before consignment.
Timber has always played an important role in the development of the region. This is particularly evident in towns like Mount Perry which once relied heavily on this industry. The establishment of plantations to ensure a constant supply of quality hardwood has expanded in recent years. There is also an industry based around the hoop pine plantation at Kalpowar where logs are transported to Gladstone and made into paddle pop sticks.
Mining is playing an increasing role in the region with the ongoing operation of the gold mine near Mount Perry and the Siltstone quarry at Eidsvold. The possible development of coal, gold and other mineral deposits around Monto have the potential to bring prosperity to the North Burnett region.
With a wealth of natural beauty and bio-diversity, the North Burnett is developing a thriving tourism industry. The development of Paradise Dam and Mingo Crossing has seen an increase in demand for the region. New projects including the construction of the RM Williams Australian Bush Learning Centre at Eidsvold and additional walking tracks in the national parks will add to the attraction of the region.
The A3 Country Way Burnett Highway with its many side trips and attractions is seen as a viable route for caravaners and other travellers as they make their way north for the winter and south for the summer. Many find our district irresistible and stay for longer periods to enjoy the country hospitality.
Fresh water fishing is a significant attraction in the North Burnett. With greater restrictions on salt water anglers and reduced catches, many keen fishermen are regularly utilizing our well stocked impoundments.