Tour on track after trial
THE Southern Forests region is poised for more exposure following a successful trial of the Genuinely Extraordinary Southern Forests and Farm Experience tour at the weekend.
Announced last month, the fiveday, four-night tour will kick off next month with bookings already in place and will visit various agriculture and food tourism businesses between Manjimup and Pemberton.
Representatives from Tourism WA, the Regional Tourism Organisation and various media outlets attended a trial run of the tour which was tipped to open up the region to Australia and the world.
The trial ran across Friday and Saturday and included behindthe-scenes tours of the region’s packing houses and processing facilities, farms and orchards and some of the region’s nature experiences.
Highlights included a visit to Advance Packing and Marketing to see how raw fruit and vegetables were transformed into juices, baby food and smoothies and a visit to CharCol Springs to learn about pastured eggs.
Southern Forests Food Council executive chairman Bevan Eatts said the council would now take into consideration feedback from producers, businesses and tour guests and adapt the tour as necessary.
“I think we’ve got a good starting point now and we can start to evolve and tailor it,” he said.
Mr Eatts said he hoped the tour would expose the Genuinely Southern Forests brand to more people, internationally and throughout Australia.
Peos Estate co-owner Vic Peos, who showcased his family-owned and operated avocado orchard, boutique vineyard and winery as part of the experience, said the tours had a huge potential to attract investors to the region.
“It will open up the area to the world,” he said.
“Investors will see the opportunities and want a piece.
“We love what we do and want to share that with people.”
Tourism WA familiarisation supervisor Jessica Panton said the tour was innovative.
“We bring in key trade and media internationally and from within Australia to showcase these types of experiences to create more awareness,” she said.
“To have a product bundled together like this is exactly what people are after.”