The district exhibits again showcased the finest produce from regions across NSW and parts of Southern Queensland in an artful display.
Sydney Royal Judges scrutinised the produce that goes into creating them. Everything is judged individually – fruit, vegetables, grains, pulses, oils and fibres – to determine the best in each region.
The southern district, however, will have to wait another year for overall victory, after losing by only 2.2 points to rivals southeast Queensland. They were followed by north, west and then central.
The last time the Southern District Exhibit won the overall event was back in 2002. Since then, the northern district dominated, securing 11 titles with central taking three wins.
Kenny Hewitt, manager of the southern district, said many positives were gained. “It wasn’t as bad as one other year. I remember we lost by one tenth of a point – you wouldn’t think that was possible, would you?”
Southern district, however, took top honours in the dairy produce and commercial fibres categories.
I remember we lost by one tenth of a point – you wouldn’t think that was possible, would you?
“This competition is the best we’ve done for a fair while now,” Mr Hewitt said. “We’ve also done very well in the grains this year with a few champions.”
Indeed, there were five key winners in the pulse, oats, wheat and maize categories. Other winning sections of included Andrew Havandjia at Jarradale Table Pumpkin winning the champion pumpkin award. Meanwhile, Neil Sheather at Kikuyu Grass from Gundagai won the champion grass and Ann Robson from Batlow was crowned Granny Smith apple champion.
As for display, southern came second behind central by 34 points. “The backdrop using grains took us about six to seven days to do, it was quite a meticulous job. A strong effort by all,” Mr Hewitt said.