Iconic mango auction celebrates Rocklea-based markets' golden anniversary
There is nothing more decadent that a juicy mango to kick off a celebration. This season, the golden King of Fruits has become the symbol of the Brisbane Markets’ golden anniversary as it celebrates its 50 years of moving to the Rocklea site from the city markets – that’s half a century of selling the Lovin’ Summer, Lovin’ Mangoes fruit.
The exciting Brisbane Markets Limited’s 13th annual auction of the season's prized symbolic first tray of mangoes and other fantastic auction items on Thursday, 9 October 2014, will support the charities Diabetes Queensland and Life Education Queensland.
The auction is held in the heart of the Brisbane Produce Market trading area, with a host of high-profile supporters among the Markets community adding to the excitement and expectation surrounding the event, as both friends and competitors wonder who will have the deepest pockets and the biggest heart?
Brisbane Markets Limited CEO Andrew Young said he hoped the Markets community and its hungry customers would be as generous as they were last year, with $68,500 raised in total.
"We want anyone who has a passion for mangoes and wants to support these fantastic organisations to come down to the Markets and bid on this year's tempting line-up of auction items," Mr Young said.
The atmospheric event will be MC'd by TV personality Bill McDonald while master-auctioneer Haesley Cush talks his way into the crowd’s pockets and announces the raffle prizes. Then taking centre stage, the highest bidder for the symbolic first tray of mangoes will be crowned the 2014 "Mango King or Queen". The Brisbane Markets Mango Auction has generated over $750,000 for charity since Brisbane Markets Limited bought the Markets in 2002.
Some of this year’s great auction items include unforgettable experiences like a weekend for four at the V8 Supercars; an ultimate deep-sea fishing adventure for eight people; and a private dining experience for 10 prepared by an award-winning chef. Bidders could also take home a limited-edition framed Brisbane Broncos jersey signed by seven Bronco’s captains, or a framed artwork inspired by the iconic Mango Auction, created especially for the event by Brisbane artist Pip Boydell.
In addition, 36 local greengrocers have joined forces to raise money for the Mango Auction by asking shoppers to donate a gold coin to receive one of a set of Ben’ Friends Get Cheeky collector cards. The cards are endorsed by Ben Hannant, Brisbane Produce Market's Healthy Eating Ambassador and rugby league player, with all proceeds going directly to charity.
Food for thought
Since 1968 Diabetes Queensland has been the peak body providing a collective voice for people with diabetes in Queensland, supporting more than 200,000 registrants and 50,000 financial members.
Life Education Queensland is Australia's largest non-government provider of drug and health education for children. In the past year, funds raised through the Mango Auction have helped reach more than 6,000 vulnerable and at risk children across South East Queensland.
Fifty years of moving mangoes
In 2014, the Brisbane Markets community celebrates the progress made since the Market's move from the Roma and Turbot Streets in Brisbane City to the purpose-built Rocklea site, opened in 1964 by the then Queensland Premier, the Hon. Frank Nicklin.
Ever since, mangoes have stood pride of place at the Rocklea site, where wholesalers first received their mangoes by ship and rail from Australia’s north, hand stacking the mangoes in their wooden crates ready for sale.
Today’s Brisbane Markets Mango Auction has become a symbol of the generosity that has flowed from the Brisbane Markets community, raising more than $750,000 since private ownership of the Rocklea site in 2002.
The Brisbane Produce Market is the State’s most important centre for fresh fruit vegetables and flowers, with more than 7,000 growers supplying 53 wholesalers, aided by another 100 support businesses on-site, representing a daily muster of more than 4,000 people.
The Brisbane Markets is midway through a $100 million redevelopment, including an imminent $6.3 million investment in additional roof coverage for the central trading area, among other plans.
The Markets can also cook up a storm! The ‘Market Kitchen’ is a commercial kitchen for hire located in the heart of the fresh produce hub: a five-star Brisbane City Council-rated facility with the highest quality kitchen, catering and AV equipment. It’s a great venue for commercial cookery, cooking demonstrations, product launches, private cooking classes, catering and student training.
13th annual Brisbane Markets Mango Auction
Thursday, 9 October 2014 from 6.45am-8am
Brisbane Produce Market, 385 Sherwood Road, Rocklea
Media to enter via main gate. Security will provide directions to designated car parking.