Griffith’s prune industry has been pitching the nutritional value of its plums to Australian dietitians this year bringing on board accredited practicing dietitian Lisa Yates.
Having attended the Australian Prune Industry Association’s annual conference for 2018 in Griffith last month, Mrs Yates says her work with the association in 2018 mostly involved her trying to get the rest of Australia’s dietitians interested in the dried plum.
“We produced some resource material, we attended with the Dietitians Association of Australia National Conference in Sydney in May and I wrote a health professionals report,” Mrs Yates said.
“The APIA is looking specifically at growing the Australian consumption of prunes, there are certainly efforts around the world to get people to consume more prunes including work by the California Dried Plum Board and the International Nut and Dried Fruit Council.
Griffith’s prune industry supplies almost 50 per cent of prunes consumed in Australia with the majority of the remainder being supplied from South America which California Dried Plum Board CEO Donn Zea says are inferior.
“I would like to see a new culture of prune eating somehow they got put on the back shelf,” Mrs Yates said.
“There are a number of nutrients found in prunes which help build bones vitamin K, boron to absorb magnesium, potassium, sorbitol which helps to absorb calcium and antioxidants including Chlorogenic Acid which also has bone building properties.”
“Prunes have always been known as the old person’s fruit but I would also say that young people need to eat prunes because they are building bones until they are in your mid 20s.”
“Somehow people got the impression that dried fruit are high in sugar, but it’s the natural fruit sugars with nothing added, a serve of six prunes is about 50 grams which contains about 100 calories,”
“The kind of fibers are also low-GI, a low-GI snack helps satisfy hunger for longer and that in turn helps manage weight.”
During her trip to Griffith, Mrs Yates was taken on a tour with Bella Vita Tours to which Mrs Yates said she found the diversity of the Griffiths agricultural sector remarkable and an ideal attraction for diet experts.
Mrs Yates said she is interested in returning to Griffith with a group of fellow dietitians to tour agriculture and talk to local growers.
Griffith City Council tourism manger Mirella Guidolin said it’s well within the councils capacity to be organised and that she would be interested in discussing the idea further with Miss Yates and the dietitians association.
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