The Noah Project

Rebuilding a sustainable world.

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Maleny – A Cooperative Place

Between the beauty of the place and its many cooperatives, tailored to the needs of its citizens, Maleny seems like a great place to live.

Kamala Alister writes:

Maleny is situated 100 kilometers north of Brisbane on the Sunshine Coast Hinterland, Australia. It is surrounded by lush tropical vegetation, has stunning views of the Glass House Mountains, and overlooks the Pacific Ocean. It has a population of over 7,000 people. And it is a cooperative place.

Maleny has a long history of cooperative enterprise. On the 3rd May 1903, settlers started the first dairy cooperative in the region, the Maleny Cooperative Dairy Association. During its lifetime, it built 3 butter factories. In the 1940?s, the community got together to build the Maleny Under 5?s Centre Kindergarten in one weekend.

Today Maleny has seven legally incorporated cooperatives and an even greater number of similar social enterprises, which work in most areas of community life. These include: a consumers’ coop, a cooperative bank, a cooperative club, a workers’ coop, a cashless trading coop, a cooperative radio station, a cooperative film society, 4 environmental coops, and several community settlement coops.

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Eco-friendly generation Y boosts demand for chemical free products

Georgia-Mae Inch and Anna-Lisa Persson have a healthy bite to eat at Sun and Earth Organics. Picture: Mark Calleja

Jackie Sinnerton of the Courier Mail reports on a new trend among young people to go organic:

Brisbane teenager Anna-Lisa Persson, 18, has recently moved out of home and always shops for beauty products that are kind to the skin as well as the environment.

‘It’s a bit of a trend for young people to go organic. It might seem more expensive but, in the long run, the products last longer and it’s a good investment all around,” she said.

Georgia-Mae Inch, 18, also from Brisbane said organic food tastes fantastic and makes you feel so much better.

‘I love the chemical-free ice cream and popcorn,’ she said.

Andrea Raftesath, manager of Sun &Earth Organics at New Farm, agreed business was booming.

‘Of course a lot of customers are seeking out foods because they are lactose intolerant or have allergies to gluten or nuts. But the profile of the customer is changing and often it is simply people who feel run down wanting to clean up their diets,’ she said.

And according to Tracey Loiterton of Wray Organic at Enoggera, Brisbane, there has been a shift in people’s attitudes to health foods and Queenslanders are now more wary of what they put in their bodies.