Dairy farmer going it alone
FOR dairy farmer Graham MacIntyre, it must feel like a revolution.
When he founded the Lynward Queensland Milk in defiance of the supermarket giants, he found three hinterland IGAs willing to stock his produce. Now you can buy the maroon-labelled milk across the Coast - in clubs, cafes and fruit stores as well as small supermarkets.
Since the Daily cast a spotlight on the Kenilworth farmer's grand plans, the Coast has backed him and the region's suffering dairy industry. He has even been contacted by Coles officials interested in selling his brand. At the moment, he says that is not an option.
"There are a lot more IGAs coming on board," Mr MacIntyre said.
"We're looking at more independents as well, including corner stores. The local independents are the ones who look after local people.
"They're small business people like myself who are having a go and are struggling against the big fellas.
"We're very much working together. Your grocery stores like IGA and Foodworks and corner stores and fruit shops are interested in helping the small businesses and those doing what I'm doing.
"Coles made contact with me and I will discuss business with them, but not at this stage."
One of those independent groups selling Mr MacIntyre's product is Fruit World in Maroochydore. Owner Ro Gibson - the daughter of a dairy farmer - said its growing popularity came from its taste.
"I know what real milk tastes like so I took it on board," Ms Gibson said.
"It's selling very, very well. People are looking for it."
Maroochy RSL also uses the Kenilworth milk in its hot drinks, delivering a consistent and large-scale buyer for the product. Next week, Queensland Milk releases its 2% low-fat milk and a pasteurised or "original style" milk that is especially creamy.