Debates Day 3 - Thursday 21 October 1993
Parliamentary Record 21
Debates for 6th Assembly 1990 - 1994; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 6th Assembly 1990 - 1994
Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
DEBATES - Thursday 21 October 199S That is not a bad effort. That medal does not date back to the beginnings of the Victorian Football League competition. It is relatively recent in origin and yet 2 Territorians have won it - 2 from a population that is comparable only to the crowd that gathers to see the grand final played at the MCG. Not only that, but both of our Norm Smith Medallists are Aboriginal people and the spin-off gained for the reconciliation process in that way is of great benefit. Our footy players are doing a magnificent job promoting the Territory with such stars as Adrian and Gilbert down there and the man of the moment, Michael Long, not to mention Gavin Wanganeen, the Brownlow Medallist, and our colleague, Maurice Rioli, who remains much-loved by every footy fan in Australia. One could almost say that a Territory football player is approaching the same status as a New Zealand racehorse. People use both terms with the same air of respect. I am delighted to see this state of affairs and I congratulate all associated with footy in the Territory - both players and their encouragers, from my parliamentary colleague and sparring partner, Roger Vale, in the Centre, to people who have put so much effort into the game for so many years such as Brother Pye on Bathurst Island with whom I have had the pleasure to talk at various times. I believe we will go from strength to strength now that the pioneering work has been done. It has proven that Territorians can survive a Melbourne winter - the sort of Melbourne winter that I escaped from - even if they have to jump in the sauna at half time, as Michael Long was reputed to do. All of us benefit from the promotion of the Territory in this way that ensues naturally from the popularity of these players. All of us can feel proud of the fine players who are fostered by our Territory leagues. Turning to a primary industry issue, I want to refer to the horticultural potential of the Territory and the horticultural realities in the Territory. Mr Deputy Speaker, that is a matter of some interest to you. Something that has often astounded or at least surprised me is the relative lack of emphasis given to horticulture in the Northern Territory. The Territory has a thriving and innovative industry that can only expand. The potential for horticulture is immense and far-reaching. I think this is particularly true in the Centre although it is not exclusively true of the Centre. It is to be hoped that small businesses and developers can be encouraged to take an even greater interest in this area. Already in the Alice Springs region, a thriving market garden industry provides a variety of goods, including fresh asparagus and herbs. The date farm in the farm area of Alice Springs has not only become a tourist attraction, but supplies the local market with a quite astounding variety of fresh dates. Cut flowers are also becoming popular with many growers developing and expanding into native flowers that have the potential to become very popular. Australia, and the Territory in particular, has some of the most beautiful flowers available. Already the Top End is becoming more and more aware of export markets and the export potential for cut flowers such as orchids. I was fortunate enough to visit a number of producers in Katherine recently, and I believe I mentioned that at the last sittings. I visited the nursery in Katherine owned by Ian and Liz Clark and I saw at first hand their beautiful strawberry plants. That is an exciting venture in that country. They are experimenting with these plants in order to produce a quality product for local markets. Equally, the Ti Tree and Pine Hill developments etc have been of great value, not only to the producers 10 273
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