IT'S that time of year again to look back at my 11 monthly columns.
Strictly speaking, there should be 12, but, with no GFV issue in January, this gives me a chance to have a break and take deep breaths to steel myself for the year to come.
So, February was all about cherries, and how the Tasmanian brand name was added to very cheap imported fruit from Chile to boost the price dramatically in Hong Kong.
In March, I commented on the name change of the government department most relevant to this journal, the Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment (DPIPWE), to the Department of Natural Resources and Environment Tasmania (NRE Tas).
What happened to agriculture?
It's been taken on by the Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture (TIA).
Which, as I reported in April, was moving to Launceston.
May featured the old chestnut, sustainability: "We should lay off the sustainability preaching and let industry get on with their activities."
Kentucky Fried Chicken was the highlight in June.
There was an acute shortage of lettuce due to flooding in NSW and Queensland, so customers were taken aback when they tasted cabbage instead.
The war in Ukraine gave me an excuse in July to extol its position as the breadbasket of Europe - it possesses 30 per cent of the world's richest black soil and is the largest producer of sunflower seed and oil - and then to talk about biosecurity.
This ranged from the 1833km rabbit proof fence in WA to the island status of Tasmania.
In September I reported that it was literally a wash-out.
I was back to my old hobby horse, "carbon dioxide is essential" in October, quoting Christopher Booker as saying "is the obsession with climate change turning out to be the most costly scientific blunder in history?".
This generated some positive feedback from the local federal MP.
I told myself to be less cynical, so in November quoted the Winetourism guide as reporting that "the cool climate of the Tasmanian wine region has made it the perfect location for the production of sparkling wine".
Time to reflect
THIS, dear reader, is the December column.
Looking back on 2022, the topic which sticks in my mind is the ongoing flood damage in Victoria and New South Wales, covering vast areas.
As you look at the TV coverage, it is blindingly obvious that those areas are vast because they are very flat - this always hits me when I drive to see my daughter in Point Lonsdale.
A colleague of mine from Western Australia said after I drove him on a whirlwind tour of the North West and West Coast here that God must have been very tired by the time He created Tasmania and had given up ironing - if Tasmania was ironed out, he reckoned that it would have been bigger than Western Australia.
It's this topography which gives us the economic advantage - in a small area you can get a wide range of "terroirs" and microclimates and differences in the specifications of all horticultural produce.
- Dr Walker welcomes questions, comments and feedback. Contact him via e-mail him at: email@example.com
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