21.5 C
Byron Shire
December 8, 2022

Farming’s tough nut

Latest News

NSW Labor candidate announced for Ballina

Andrew Broadley has been named the NSW Labor candidate for Ballina for the March 2023 election.

Other News

Tyalgum ready to celebrate the festive season

Tyalgum are looking forward to a very exciting Festive Season as the alternative route to town is now upgraded and they are looking forward to an exciting range of events are on.

BreastScreen van comes to Byron

The BreastScreen NSW mobile van will be in Byron Bay from 14 – 21 December at the Cavanbah Centre on Ewingsdale Road. Free mammograms are provided to eligible women aged between 50 and 74 and there’s no referral needed.

Editorial – Wokie dokey

Last Thursday’s Council meeting was an example of when a good idea gets kiboshed because the people proposing the idea are considered crazy conspiracy theorists.

The Menu

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C_uTkUGcHv4   Do chefs wield too much power in this world? The power over life and death in fact? In The...

Dogs – stay out 

Byron’s Main Beach and playground is a no-dog area. About ten signs clearly state this and unless someone is...

So you think someone needs a puppy for Christmas?

If you’re thinking about giving your loved one a puppy as a gift this Christmas, Dogs Australia urges you to think twice.

Frank Boyle of Marlivale Farm at Byron Farmers Market.

When fourth-generation farmer Frank Boyle lost his pecan crop this year owing to the wet weather conditions, he still had something to thankful for. While there were no nuts, there was a safety net – rice. 

‘We were heading for a fairly good pecan crop this year,’ Frank said. ‘The trees and the crop survived the flood, but the relentless wet weather turned the orchard into mud and we couldn’t get any machinery out there to harvest.’ 

In an effort to salvage some of the crop, Frank, along with wife Andrea, daughter Sophie, and son-in-law Mac, even tried hand harvesting but to no avail.

‘We harvested about 200kg by hand, but 85 per cent was rotten because the nuts had been sitting in mud,’ he said. ‘Not having pecans really brings home the fact that when you’re in farming, you’re so vulnerable that you really need some diversity. So it’s a great relief to have the rice.’

The idea to plant rice was sparked when drought hit the Riverina region, a prime rice-growing area, in 2006–07 and the search was on for high-rainfall areas to grow rice.

The Boyle family farm at Goolmangar had already been cropping so it wasn’t a huge stretch to try rice.

‘We decided to plant out about a hectare of rice,’ Frank said. ‘We really wanted to diversify so we thought we’d give it a go.’

Frank had already been selling his pecans at Byron Farmers Market for a number of years and decided to test the rice at the market.

‘We turned up one Thursday morning with 50 1kg bags of rice and they were sold out within an hour and a half,’ he said. ‘It was incredible, and it really brought home that there are so many people in this area that are really passionate about eating locally grown food.’

Today the range of rice products has extended into rice cakes, rice flour, and rice crumbs.

Regular customers will have noticed not only the new faces of the next generation – Sophie and Mac – at the markets, but also a name change with Nimbin Valley Pecans and Rice switching to Marlivale Farm, after the name the family farm was given back in the 1840s.

Frank and the family hope to have pecans available again in March/April next year. In the meantime, you can still pick up their amazing pecan spread at Byron and Bangalow Farmers Markets.

Byron Farmers Market is held every Thursday 7–11am at Butler Street Reserve and Bangalow Farmers Market is every Saturday 7–11am behind the Bangalow Pub.


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Varroa mite Red Zone expansion

Varroa mites are the most serious pest to honeybees worldwide, and can destroy honey bee colonies if left unchecked and the current eradication zone has been expanded.

Tyalgum ready to celebrate the festive season

Tyalgum are looking forward to a very exciting Festive Season as the alternative route to town is now upgraded and they are looking forward to an exciting range of events are on.

Take action against 15 months jail for climate protester

Northern Rivers locals are gathering in Lismore this Saturday to protest the imprisonment of non-violent climate activist Deanna ‘Violet’ Coco who stopped one lane of traffic on the Sydney Harbour Bridge in April.

Agritourism policy forced upon LGAs

The NSW Department of Planning and Environment (DPE) has ignored Byron Shire Council’s urgent request to delay the forced adoption of the NSW government’s agritourism policy. The policy came into effect last week in all local government areas (LGAs).