Postcard from... Powranna
Saturday 19 July 2014
Thousands of Black Angus bulls snort steam gently into the early morning air at Tasmania’s largest cattle feed lot as they jostle for space at a trough.
They are being fattened up for the Japanese market where marbled Angus beef is in high demand. The bulls fetch higher prices, thanks to Tasmania’s status as the only Australian state that bans genetically modified food crops and animal feed. That moratorium has made Tasmania – an island separated from Australia’s mainland by 150 miles of water – a model of high-end, value-added agriculture. Tasmania’s isolation and wilderness once made it a dumping ground for the British Empire’s convicts. But these same qualities, and a population of just over half a million, make the island one of the cleanest places on earth.
Now, the environment is under threat. Tasmania’s powerful poppy industry, the world’s largest supplier of pharmaceutical grade opiates for painkillers, is lobbying for the moratorium on genetically modified organisms to be lifted.
The road Tasmania chooses will be critical as Australia seeks to become a “food bowl” for a rapidly growing middle-class in Asia. Already the world’s third largest exporter of beef, Australia is eyeing agriculture as a key economic driver as a decade-long mining investment boom wanes.
- 2 David De Gea: Manchester United goalkeeper's £29m move to Real Madrid off - because paperwork 'not done in time'
- 3 Pansexual: What is it - and when did the term gain popularity?
- 4 A Chinese journalist has appeared on state television 'confessing' to causing the stock market chaos
Miley Cyrus calls out hypocrisy of women’s nipples being taboo
The man who sold Minecraft to Microsoft for £2.5 billion says it's made him miserable
Nazi 'gold train': Fire engulfs suspected location of vehicle in Poland
Blood Moon and Supermoon: September to bring brightest – and dimmest – full Moon of the year on same night
Isis releases graphic video showing four Shia 'spies' being burned alive in Anbar, Iraq
Climate change: 2015 will be the hottest year on record 'by a mile', experts say
Jeremy Corbyn calls Osama bin Laden's killing a 'tragedy' - but was it taken out of context?
Tony Blair attacks Jeremy Corbyn's 'Alice In Wonderland' politics
Theresa May says migrants should be banned from entering the UK unless they have jobs lined up
Iain Duncan Smith 'should resign over disability benefit death figures', says Jeremy Corbyn
UN investigating British Government over human rights abuses caused by IDS welfare reforms
£20000 - £25000 per annum + competitive: SThree: Are you looking to take your ...
£20000 - £40000 per annum + competitive: SThree: Exciting career prospect for ...
£20000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This award-winning company, whi...
£40000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a unique & exciting opp...