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TAS Country : November 4th 2010
Friday, November 5, 2010 Tasmanian Country 11 as flour power takes to the sky Not many people look forward to windy conditions, but breezy days are at the top of flour miller Benjamin Paulsen's wish list. Karolin MacGregor reports REVAMPED: Callington Mill at Oatlands after its 30-year restoration. A 30-YEAR, $2.6 million revamp has given the Callington Mill at Oatlands a new lease on life. Extensive work has restored the mill to its former glory and it is fully operational again, much to the delight of the local community. Restoration work on the wind-powered mill, which was built in 1836, started about 30 years ago. Benjamin Paulsen is one of two part-time millers at the iconic mill. Mr Paulsen said while the mill was a unique drawcard for tourists, it was also an artisan flour producer. The mill is believed to be the only authentic 19th century working flour mill in the southern hemisphere. Mr Paulsen said there was an art to producing quality flour that had the right consistency. ''I never used to like wind, but now I find it's quite exciting,'' he said. Mr Paulsen, who used to work as an artist, said making the change to traditional flour milling had been a steep learning curve. ''It's like anything new,'' he said. ''We've had a few teething problems and adjustments to make while we're learning how everything works, but that's part of the fun.'' The mill produces organic flour using grain from Tasmanian producers. Mr Paulsen said he was currently grinding wheat from a North-West producer. He said the wheat had very hard kernels, which were ideal for making bread. ''The bakers are absolutely loving it because it's so strong,'' Mr Paulsen said. ''But it wouldn't be very good for making scones or biscuits. ''The type of flour you get depends a lot on the grain you're working with. ''That's the beauty of grinding flour with the stones because it's not heating up the enzymes and all the good stuff from the grain is still there.'' Mr Paulsen said that, as well as wholegrain flour, he could put the flour through a dresser to produce premium white flour. He said he would also be grinding spelt at the mill and some barley. ''Depending on the quality of the grain we're working with, we might have to mix in some different grain to produce the right type of flour for the bakers,'' Mr Paulsen said. Visitors to the mill can take a guided tour to see exactly how the mill works, or find out more at the visitor information centre. They can also take home some flour to bake with in their own kitchens. Mr Paulsen said while it was a complete contrast to painting, he was enjoying the challenges of his new career. ''I love it,'' he said. ''We get heaps of people coming through and when you love talking as much as I do it is the perfect job.'' Large sails with moveable canvas shades are used to capture even the slightest breeze, which then turns the mill stones. The sails can be locked if conditions get too windy or at night when the mill is not operating. Mr Paulsen said winds between 24-30km/h were needed to operate both sets of grinding stones, and the top of the mill could be rotated to capture as much wind power as possible. He said before grain was milled a small amount of water was added to make it easier to grind. Bags of the wheat are lifted up through each floor of the mill using one-way trap doors and a long chain, which is connected to a unique pulley system, which is also wind-powered. The grain is then stored in wooden hoppers, before being fed into the grinding stones. All the wooden equipment in the mill has been left untreated to ensure the flour isn't contaminated. Mr Paulsen said setting the stones correctly and feeding in the right amount of grain was vital when producing quality flour. The overall operation of the mill is managed by Graham Prichard, who runs the Oatlands Woodfired Bakery. Mr Paulsen said he planned to sell flour to specialist bakeries around the state and would be looking for more organic grain producers this season. Anyone interested in supplying organic grain to the Callington Mill should contact the Southern Midlands Council for more details. Award win to Fonterra FONTERRA Australia has been named exporter of the year in the 2010 National Australia Bank agribusin- ess awards. Other winners included -- Alan Winney: Leader of the Year Award. Sunny Ridge Strawberry Farm: Primary Producer of the Year Award. The Chia Company: Inno- vation in New and Emerg- ing Industries Award. AgTechnix Pty Ltd: Tech- nology and Innovation Award. Taylors Wines: Environ- ment and Energy Manage- ment Award. Brookfarm: Rural Enterpr- ise Award. Pfizer Animal Health: Em- ployer of Choice Award. CBH Group: Risk Manage- ment Award. The Weekly Times 2014677-101105 Do you have what it takes? Business Opportunity Husqvarna is the world s largest producer of outdoor power products including chainsaws, trimmers, lawn mowers and garden tractors. As a long standing premium brand, Husqvarna has an enviable reputation in the outdoor power equipment industry in the Australian market. Our dealers support the needs of Husqvarna customers and form an integral part of our local market strategy. Motivated dealers who actively support the brand and their customers benefit from rewarding returns and growth prospects. Opportunities currently exist for new dealers within selected areas of Tasmania to join the Husqvarna dealer network. To fi nd out more about Husqvarna please visit; www.husqvarna.com.au All expressions of interest should be directed to the: The Sales Manager Husqvarna Australia Pty Ltd, Locked Bag 5, Central Coast B.C. NSW 2252 Phone 02 4352 7425
October 28th 2010
November 11th 2010