An initiative to connect consumers with Scenic Rim produce has earned the Scenic Rim Regional Council a win in the Resilient Australia Awards.

Scenic Rim Farm Box, which Council supported as part of its Economic Stimulus Package in response to COVID-19, won an award in the Local Government Award category at the 2020 Resilient Australia Awards.  The awards recognise projects that have helped Queensland communities better prepare for natural disasters and emergencies.

At a time when local producers were losing valuable income as a result of the global pandemic, Scenic Rim Mayor Greg Christensen said the farm to fridge pivot went a long way to filling the gap caused by the cancellation of Scenic Rim Eat Local Week and the loss of business as supply chains and restaurants closed due to COVID-19. “Scenic Rim Eat Local Week, which was due to celebrate its 10th anniversary in 2020, pumps around $2 million into the local economy each year and attracts close to 40,000 visitors,” he said.

“It also provides our artisanal producers with a fantastic sales outlet for their products and builds loyal relationships with our city cousins. So, there was a big gap there which had to be filled in a big way. We have seen steady growth in the number of participating suppliers registered with Scenic Rim Farm Box, offering over 240 different product lines available for purchase.”

Christensen said the collaboration had achieved significant outcomes for the region. “Scenic Rim Farm Box is a perfect example of local government building better links with the private sector as a priority, not least because infrastructure is often owned or managed by private interests which deliver services that enable communities to function,” he said.

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