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Arnott’s makes Tim Tam using “beautiful” Australian strawberries supermarkets rejected
A new Tim Tam biscuit is boosting a Queensland couple’s bid to save tens of thousands of tonnes of Australian fruit rejected by supermarkets at the peak of growing seasons.
Stuart and Allison McGruddy have launched an initiative that fights against the war on waste by freezing fruit. But after further research, they were disheartened to know that many major companies use imported, rather than local Aussie ingredients.
But that’s slowly changing, as biscuit maker Arnott’s has used 20 tonnes of the fruit the couple saved in their new limited-edition Sunshine Coast Strawberries and Cream Tim Tam.
Mr McGruddy who is a chef, and wife Allison left London eight years ago to work on his family’s farm, and were taken aback at the amount of perfectly ripe Australian fruit being rejected because it didn’t live up to supermarket standards.
According to FoodWise, approximately 20 to 40 per cent of fruit and vegetables are rejected before it even reaches supermarket shelves due to not meeting aesthetic requirements.
“I’ve been to farms in the local area with strawberries that dump multiple tonnes a day, and I take photos of it, and it just blows me away,” said Mr McGruddy.
“Like after the needle incident a couple of years ago, people got to see just how much strawberry waste happens in the industry, and it is the same with bananas and mangoes.”
Ms McGruddy added: “We were seeing lots of beautiful raspberries that might be rejected by supermarkets at the time, and Stuart’s dad said, ‘What can you do with these beautiful berries, Stuart – c’mon, you can do something with them’.
“Not long after that we had the 2015 outbreak of hepatitis A that was caused by contaminated berries produced in China, and we thought we need to do something about this, let’s get an Australian offering, so that’s basically the premise behind our business.”
They founded My Berries, and freeze and bag a growing range of Australian-farmed fruit in a small factory near Bribie Island.
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