Thursday, 3 November 2011

Farming Australia: Native Plant

The stamps issued by Australia Post on May 17th 2011,  represents four of Australia’s largest native horticultural industries: eucalyptus oil, honey, macadamia nuts and tea tree oil. All four commercially cultivated industries have an export market. Designer of these stamps is Wayne Rankin .

Eucalyptus Oil:
The Eucalyptus oil industry, which began in 1852 in Victoria, has been called the first truly Australian industry.
Today Australia accounts for only 10 per cent of the total world production, but it is regaining some of the market share for medicinal oil lost to China.

Australian oil derives from the Blue Mallee, grown mainly in central Victoria with some production in NSW. Eucalyptus oil has a wide range of industrial and medicinal uses.

Australian Honey:

The honey industry is worth about $50 million annually of which around 50 per cent is exported. Bees are declining worldwide and consequently. Australian honey is highly sought after.

While the honey bee Apismellifera is not native to Australia (introduced in 1822) 80 per cent of honey is derived from native flora such as eucalyptus flowers. Honey is produced in every state and territory, with 45 per cent coming from NSW.

Macadamia Nuts:
Australia is the world's largest producer of macadamia nuts, with the industry currently worth around $110.7 million.
NSW accounts for more than 60 per cent of production and Queensland for around 40 per cent. There is also a tiny industry in Tasmania. Around 75 per cent of Australian macadamia nuts are exported. 

Tea Tree Oil:
A potent natural compound with antibacterial, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties.
Tea tree oil is our second most successful native horticultural industry (after macadamias), earning around $30 million annually.
The tea tree Melaleuca alternifolia is native to the northern rivers region of NSW. Main Camp in northern NSW is the world's largest tea tree plantation. (Resources: Australia Post)

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