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On the Land

23 November, 2021

Courtice takes out Farmer of the Year

A CALYPSO mango and citrus grower from Dimbulah, west of Mareeba, has been crowned the 2021 Charlie Nastasi Horticultural Farmer of the Year.

Lucy Nastasi presented Dimbulah mango and citrus grower, Raymond Courtice with the 2021 Charlie Nastasi Horticultural Farmer of the Year award.

Raymond Courtice, 29, who is a partner with his father in Ontario Mangoes, was presented the award at a gala function on Friday night. 

He was one of three nominees for the prestigious award which honours Biboohra farmer Charlie Nastasi. 

Mark Taylor of Irresistible Orchard, and Shaun and Debbie Jackson of Daintree Fresh, were also nominated. Mr Courtice’s achievements include: 

  •  first Queensland mango grower to send fruit to Western Australia (development of protocol for whole-of-industry) 
  •  establishment of a state-of-the-art packhouse 
  •  establishment of a quarantine facility to assist with providing seasonal labour to Mareeba- Dimbulah region. 

FNQ Growers president Joe Moro said each of the three nominees were worthy of the award, and all were shining examples of the future of the horticulture industry in Far North Queensland. 

“Choosing a winner is always difficult and this year was no different, with a fair deal of deliberation by the judges,” Mr Moro said. 

“The calibre of the nominees shows the industry’s future is on good hands.” 

The award was the highlight of the association’s dinner held in Mareeba which also featured a produce auction that raised more than $7000 for the Mareeba Friends of the Hospital Foundation.

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