Big apple turns into big protest

Cheeky painters express their views on New Zealand apples.
Cheeky painters express their views on New Zealand apples.

WHEN locals banded together to apply for funding to repaint the Granite Belt’s iconic Big Apple, we’re not sure they had the above design in mind.

Work started on the Thulimbah apple yesterday, which instead of being transformed from a washed-out look to a bright Red Delicious or even a Granny Smith, was firstly painted completely white.

It may be fitting for the Granite Belt’s chilly winters to have a snow-covered apple, but it wasn’t until later in the day that passers-by could see another reason for the temporary change in colour scheme.

Red paint splashed a sad face with the message: “Ban NZ Apples”.

In recent months, the Australian Government relaxed trade rules to allow the import of New Zealand apples, which are now available in most supermarkets.

Granite Belt farmers are concerned about the impact the imported apples will have on their trade.

It is understood owners of Vincenzo’s, positioned beside the Big Apple but not responsible for the icon, are unhappy with the paint job.

Work will continue each Monday until Easter and it is understood the painted message will not be permanent.

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