Prior to the gold rush in the 1860’s the region around Gympie and the Mary Valley was already home to some pioneering farming ventures. There were only a handful of scattered settlements and access was only by rough dirt tracks.

Once gold was discovered the people came first in trickles and then by the thousands. With so many hungry mouths to feed after a hard day’s work, local food production became a necessity. Many crops and animals were farmed and while some had limited success, others were perfectly suited to the climate and variety of soils. These included raising beef and dairy cattle and growing a huge variety of fruits and vegetables.

The railway branch line along the Mary Valley became a vital link to transport the goods to Gympie, Maryborough, Brisbane and beyond. When the gold mines eventually closed the abundance of produce from the region kept the local economy alive. Since then the industry has continued to grow and provides thousands of local jobs.

Today you will find both small scale growers and multi-national producers in the area and can visit the markets and factory doors to get the freshest and best quality selections.

There are countless small businesses selling everything from unique cheeses and jams to freshly baked bread and gourmet treats. Also, being so close to the ocean and many rivers, there is always plenty of fresh seafood available including delicious crayfish.

Visit the country markets or choose a lovely cafe, bistro or restaurant to sit and enjoy a meal. You can even follow a food trail visiting the providers featured in the Gympie Gold Regional Produce venture. Go out and try new foods and let your taste buds guide you.