Who would have thought that the sweetest of festive spoils are only a stone’s throw away? That’s right – CoCouture chocolatier, Monica Pearson’s fresh artisan chocolate and gourmet gifts are created close by in Eatons Hill! Not only are food miles reduced, but you can celebrate her boundless innovation and creativity inspired by local partnerships… by nibbling these incredible creations. Monica’s love for creating chocolatey treats and meeting new people means she is constantly on the search for new toppings and suppliers to change things up. And if you’re anything like me, the above doubles as low to non-existent barrier to consuming my weight in the CoCouture honeycomb chocolate I now dream of every night.
It’s International Rural Women’s Day! Pamela Greet had the opportunity to chat with Rob McConchie, creator of the Postcards From the Bush podcast. With a wealth of experience and knowledge as a previous ABC journalist, Rob shares some stories of rural women.
I have the sweetest job with Tropical Pines: quality testing pineapples before they are packed to ensure our high standards and best quality are maintained. Sweet and ready to eat: that’s how we like to supply them. In dispatch I make sure our products are correctly labelled and sent on their way to destinations right across the country.
My life has been spent either driving tractors, stacking hay, showing cattle at a local show, or somewhere in QLD, NSW or VIC with harvesters. I grew up on a Lucerne farm as well as my parents running brahman cattle and operating a team of headers. Because of this, the last term of the majority of primary school was spent on the road and I was homeschooled. But this upbringing had some real benefits; it built an appreciation for hard work, it allowed me to grow resilience and perseverance, all whilst developing my passion for all things agriculture, and love of rural and regional people.
Farmers aren’t stupid people. When it comes to the land, no-one knows the place better than the farmer. In my work as an agronomist, I give producers advice about what fertilisers or chemicals they may need to apply to improve their crops, or what they might consider to improve their soil. Often someone will say to me ‘What about that corner over there?’ They know the variations and deviations of every corner over thousands of hectares. Some people don’t even know what’s in their backyard.
I’m May, and I run a market garden in Meringandan, just outside of Toowoomba. It’s here on the family land I grew up on where I operate Full Circle Farm; growing specialty crops like microgreens, edible flowers, salad greens and other leafy vegetables. This is fitting as it’s also originally where my love for backyard gardening and composting, grew to be a love for farming.
I currently spearhead the PR, Marketing and Social Media of QCamel; a family owned and operated Camel Dairy. And that family… is my family. Safe to say, I grew up just a little embarrassed that my parents are camel farmers, and my mum especially, is some level of camel mad. However despite my own embarrassment and a seemingly bad reputation, it can’t be denied that camels are in fact loving & lovable animals, and frankly, we love our camels.
The backyard of my ¾ acre family home on an urban residential block doubles as my farm, located in one of Queensland’s fastest growing areas; Moreton Bay. I grow culinary herbs and edible flowers both hydroponically & organically on approximately 900 m², and pride myself on these being completely pesticide and insecticide free.
Right now I work on my family’s conventional farm (Koala Farms) which produces various kinds of lettuce, broccoli. spinach, rocket which is sold in major supermarkets. I work in the tight knit spinach crew which harvests spinach & rocket twelve months of the year. I have also worked on some aspects of our family businesses branding and marketing, which I love – it’s our face to the community.
It has only been 21 years to build a career currently focussed on carcass fat content. Those years have taken me from a beef station 100km NW of Longreach via a local 5-pupil primary school, further schooling in Longreach and Brisbane, to a role as Hardware and Operations manager for an AgriTech startup in South Australia.