Today, a person from Rainforest Bounty came to talk to us at the lodge. They are a company who grows plantations of rainforest fruits that are native to the Atherton Tablelands in Queensland. It was started 20 years ago from a dairy farm, meaning that all of the land had been cleared for grazing. They replanted species native to the area with hopes of helping rebuild the rainforest and increase biodiversity in the area, as well as having fruit to grow and sell. With these fruits, they make artisan style condiments, which they sell to wholesale markets, restaurants, caterers, and other places within the food service industry. Most recently, they have started to export their fruits to cosmetic companies. The fruits that they grow are ooray plums, lemon aspens, cape York lillypillies, and boonjie tamarinds. These fruits have been found to have higher health benefits than some normal fruits, such as blueberries. They are looking to expand their business throughout North Queensland, and have aquired a few other farms to help increase their fruit production.
After the talk, we had free time to explore the town and study for the reflective essay that was today. A few of us went out and got lunch, others chose to hang out at the lodge, and some people stayed back to study, since this was our last in-country essay.
After the exam, we ate a spaghetti dinner provided by Ruby at the lodge, and celebrated the last essay with another bonfire. This time, we were able to go to the store and pick up s’mores ingredients, but we had to be creative since s’mores aren’t a typical treat in Australia.