Berry good sea­son start

The Gazette (Derwent Valley) - - NEWS - ROGER HAN­SON

IT was a case of singing and danc­ing in the rain for one of Tas­ma­nia’s big­gest rasp­berry farms with the wet, warm and hu­mid weather bring­ing on an early sea­son.

The rain didn’t suit ev­ery­one but Richard Clark, who runs his fam­ily’s Wester­way Rasp­berry Farm in the up­per Der­went Val­ley, beamed with ex­cite­ment at the del­uge of rain.

“I was re­ally look­ing for­ward to the down­pour,” Mr Clark said.

“With the burst of sun and heat and now the rain it has brought the sea­son on a bit ear­lier than ex­pected.

“Two or three days of rain with some breeze is per­fect for farm and the fruit.

“Just at the mo­ment it’s per­fect be­cause it re­ally makes the fruit juicy.

“I cer­tainly didn’t ex­pect to have red fruit avail­able from the first of De­cem­ber.”

The fam­ily farm will be re­tail­ing its fruit in com­postable con­tain­ers made from Sug­ar­cane pulp. Mr Clark was tak­ing de­liv­ery of his first batch of the new units when the Der­went Val­ley Gazette was vis­it­ing.

“I reckon we are the first berry grow­ers in Aus­tralia to of­fer com­postable con­tain­ers,” he said.

“Our rasp­ber­ries are big, red and juicy so the con­tain­ers need to be able to hold the juice, and these new units can do that.”

Wester­way Rasp­berry Farm has taken on Coun­try Larder’s stall at Sala­manca Place and will be offering its range of fruit there, at the New Nor­folk mar­ket and at Sunday’s Ho­bart Far­m­gate Mar­ket.

Pic­tures: MATT THOMP­SON

DEL­UGE DE­LIGHTS: Richard Clark with some fresh berries at Wester­way Rasp­berry Farm; be­low, farm worker Milly Walsh among the rasp­berry canes.

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