From the CEO
IF YOU think of Australia as a living organism, our regional towns are the arteries providing life to the heart of our major cities.
That’s especially obvious as we approach Christmas and tables pile up with regional produce. But the likes of our Coffin Bay oysters, Mildura oranges, central Queensland beef and Swan Valley wine aren’t just providing for the tables of Australian families; they’re also making a name for themselves around the globe.
As a result, our regional produce is helping to power the nation’s economy, with farming exports forecast to reach
$44 billion this financial year.
There is, however, another side to the story. Our volatile climate means that farming in Australia can be difficult. With floods and bushfires to contend with, many farmers have been doing it tough. And when we’re given the chance to lend a hand, most of us will jump in feet first.
Qantas and QantasLink employees have recently volunteered their time and skills to help the farmers of Charleville in South West Queensland. While a wet winter has helped lift spirits, the state is still more than 80 per cent drought declared.
Charleville holds a particularly special place in our hearts at Qantas: it was where our first mail flight took off on its way to Cloncurry in 1922. So when we were asked to help fly our volunteers to the farms in need, we were very happy to assist.
Together with the Outback Links program, volunteer pilots, engineers and cabin crew helped paint sheds, mend homesteads, fix machinery and provide as much help to the farmers as they could. It’s a fantastic cause and we’re really proud to be involved.
If you’re reading inflight, take a peek out the window. Whether you see rocky mountain tops, stunning reefs, golden shorelines, sprawling deserts or cityscapes, it’s obvious that Australia has something to offer every kind of traveller. And there is much to explore in this edition of Spirit.
On behalf of everyone at QantasLink, I wish you and your loved ones a safe and happy festive season.