IF you’ve noticed an influx of internationals in the central west, it may have something to do with a bumper cherry season.
Currently Pasifika Resources, based in Leeton, is seeking more pickers to work in the region to match high demand because of a very successful growing season.
Pasifika Resources manager Anna Berry estimated up to 500 people at one time will work picking fruit around Nashdale, Orange, Cudal and Canowindra.
And in what she described as a boost for the economy, that number is set to expand over the next few weeks.
“We’re based in Leeton and once a year we come to the central west and pick up to 800 tonnes of cherries alone in this area,” she said.
“It’s a massive project and we get huge numbers come to the area every year. It can only be a good thing for the local economy.”
Mrs Berry, fittingly from Vanuatu, believes up to 20 different countries have pickers right here in our backyard.
“Backpackers from all over the world come and work in the central west,” she said.
“At the moment I have pickers from France, Italy, England, Russia, Thailand, Philippines, Fiji, New Zealand and Ethiopia just to name a few.”
“We also get a lot of locals picking fruit every year.”
It’s the same situation across at Rossi Orchards. They’ve had a perfect preparation for the season and are gearing up to pick cherries on December 10.
“We’ll start around then but our peak time is around December 18 and we’ll be busy for about five weeks,” business owner Terry Rossi said.
“The season has been really good, lots of rain and warm weather, it’s been perfect.
“I’ve already been inundated with phone calls from pickers seeking work.
“We’ll get a lot of internationals, but also a lot of locals too. I estimate we’ll use around 200 pickers.”
Mrs Berry said Pasifika Resources was still on the lookout for new pickers as it enters the most hectic time of the year.
For information on fruit picking in the Nashdale area, contact Anna on 0448 378 849.