Benning's blueberries a feature at food fair

BENNING'S blueberries from Bob and Jas Benning's Woolgoolga farm and tomatoes from Kim Vincent's hydroponic greenhouses at Bonville will help to add flair to the gourmet offerings at next week's Regional Food Fair in Sydney.

Jas Benning said they had just begun picking the Sharpblue variety and would be sending three trays of sweet Sharpblue blueberries to the Fair, where they will be served as an apple and blueberry pie.

The Food Fair is a feature event for the NSW Farmers Association 2008 annual conference from July 29 to 31.

Carbon trading, truth in labelling and changes to Rural Lands Protection Boards will be among topics Coffs Coast farmers are wanting to debate at the conference.

NSW Farmers Association Mid North Coast regional services manager Michael Burt said there was wide interest in climate change and carbon trading.

He said other current topics which resonated with Coffs Coast farmers were changes to RLPBs, especially the hand-over of travelling stock routes to the Department of Lands; vague country-of-origin labelling of food products, especially labels like 'local and imported ingredients' which contained no specific amounts, and Bovine Johne's Disease.

Changes to BJD declarations have recently come into force and are causing particular concern in areas with both dairy and beef cattle.

Nambucca Valley farmers John Ainsworth and Jim Hallam will be among the 450 delegates to the Sydney Showground from around NSW for next week's conference, which will also celebrate 30 years of work for the State's largest farm lobby organisation.

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