A SELECT group of North Queensland mango growers have added a new skillset to their resumes: modelling.
Earlier this month, six growers from Giru glammed up for a photoshoot and subsequent calendar titled, "Australian Mangoes: This Season's Must-Have", sales of which will raise money for Foodbank Australia.
Grower, Alfio Pappalardo, Marathon Man Go, said featuring in the high-fashion calendar was a vast contrast from their usual day of picking and packing the season's peak harvest.
"My wardrobe doesn't usually go beyond a singlet, stubbies and gumboots - so I wasn't one hundred percent sold on the idea. That's until my wife got involved," Mr Pappalardo said.
"After the photoshoot, I can easily say that being pampered with a makeover, getting dressed up and strutting down the runway between our mango trees was a lot of fun, and at the end of the day it was all for a great cause."
The other growers were Brad and Loretta Bowen, Sandy Cove Mango Plantation; Sam and Josie Pappalardo, Marathon Man Go; and Katie Pappalardo, Marathon Man Go.
The Australian Mangoes calendar marked the start of summer and the peak of the season, with Aussies expected to indulge in close to 200 million mangoes.
Australian Mangoes spokesperson, Matthew Dwyer, said Aussie mango growers deserve to be celebrated for the effort and hard work they put into growing fruit.
"Much like the fashion world, Australian Mangoes are the season's must-have accessory. Our hope is that the calendar will highlight the great people who work tirelessly to produce our favourite summer treat," Mr Dwyer said.
Proceeds from the sales of the light-hearted 2021 calendars will support the work of Foodbank Australia.
Foodbank Australia chief executive officer, Brianna Casey, said after a challenging year for so many Australians, the calendar was a fantastic initiative that not only celebrated hard working farmers but also helped those who need Foodbank's help to put a meal on the table.
"Thank you to these wonderful mango farmers for taking the plunge and doing something that may be out of their comfort zone all in the name of charity," Ms Casey said.
"And thank you Australian Mangoes for taking on this fantastic initiative - for every dollar raised, two meals are created which is sure to help many Aussies this time of year."
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