Located out in Selhiem, 20Km before Charters Towers, is a little family owned and operated farm called ‘Black River Produce’. For roughly 20 years, the Caleo family has been supplying many little green grocers, restaurant suppliers, as well as Woolworths and Coles with their produce.
At the head of the family are Jon and Roslyn Caleo (mum and dad). I’m the eldest daughter and it’s my job to manage CalGrow Seedlings, the other part of the business that supplies the seedlings to many local farmers. In fact, we supply as far North as Cairns, down to Bundaberg and over to the Northern Territory. My little brother Anthony manages Selhiem farm. Black River Produce was originally located at Black River in Townsville, however these days most parts of the business operate from Selheim, with Anthony overseeing the day to day operations.
Above: Heidi Grinham (left, centre) and Leila Grinham (right), granddaughters of Jon and Roslyn Caleo – owners of Black River Produce
The family dabbled in a few different fruits and vegies overall, however for the last 20 years Watermelons have stood the test of time. There is nothing better than a slice of fresh Watermelon, especially on a hot day, and there are several ways you can use and consume the sweet fruit. Plus, given all of its health benefits, it’s a fruit that you should be eating all year round.
We are proud direct suppliers to both Coles and Woolworths. From September through to April we have trucks heading straight to the docks of Woolworths and Coles with fresh delicious Watermelons. Sometimes people will spread misinformation on social media, such as “Don’t buy watermelons from the supermarkets, buy local.” However, in most cases the produce has come from just down the road!
My personal favorite adult drink is a Sparkling Watermelon Cocktail. You can try it out for yourself by following this simple recipe: (makes 2)
4 Cups cubed fresh Watermelon
1 ½ cups Ginger ale
Mint Leaves and Ice for serving.
Blend Watermelon into juice. Add a couple of cubes of ice into each glass.
Next add 15ml of Gin to each glass, then the Watermelon juice, and it top with Ginger ale. Garnish with mint leaves.
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