Queensland chefs given lamb leg-up

QUEENSLAND chefs are hoping to cook up more Tasmanian lamb in their restaurants, while state growers are being urged to market their product correctly.

Eleven of Brisbane's top chefs have been in Launceston since Sunday on the Tasmanian Royal Lamb Tour.

The chefs, who include celebrity chef Alastair McLeod, formerly on TV program Ready, Steady, Cook, attended a producers' forum at the Inveresk Tramsheds yesterday to get an insight into the industry and meet producers.

McLeod, who owns Brisbane-based catering company Al'FreshCo, said he loved the fine flavour and fat cover of Tasmanian lamb.

"What propels me to them, is the enthusiasm of the primary producer and the smarts that they are implementing," he said.

"Nothing is left to chance."

Harvey's Bar and Bistro and Tinder Box restaurant owner P.J. McMillan said there were a number of reasons why Tasmanian lamb was better than other states, and that included its grass.

"There's a drought in a lot of Australia and so what comes up out of the ground that they eat obviously changes them," he said.

"Because Tasmania has plenty of water and they can irrigate, it gives them the advantage of being able to give the lamb the best environment to get the best yield."

Melrose Meats general manager Kerry Melrose said the most important thing for growers was to ensure lamb did not lose its Tasmanian brand when it was exported.

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