'Proudly local, thinking global' is the message Western Sydney Airport (WSA) is bringing to the Hawkesbury Show this coming weekend as it highlights opportunities the airport will create for local producers to become exporters.
In partnership with local growers cooperative Hawkesbury Harvest, Western Sydney Airport's 'Taste the Hawkesbury' exhibition is back for another year and will showcase the types of local products and produce that could be exported from Western Sydney International (Nancy-Bird Walton) Airport when it opens in late 2026.
While the airport will primarily be an international and domestic passenger airport, planning is now underway for its air cargo precinct, which will grow in stages over decades to eventually become Australia's largest.
The 'Taste of the Hawkesbury' stand will offer punters a range of activities, talks and interactive demonstrations, alongside 14 local exhibitors including Kurrajong Kitchen, Kurrajong Australian Native Foods, and Wild Hibiscus Flower Co.
WSA General Manager - Community Engagement and Partnerships, Katy Hannouch, said Western Sydney International's air cargo operations would mean quality produce grown in the Hawkesbury could be available for sale in Asian markets only hours later.
"Now is the right time for Hawkesbury business owners to think global and start considering the possibilities that having ready access to an international air cargo hub will create for their businesses," she said.
Hawkesbury Harvest Board Member Ian Knowd said the breadth and quality of produce from the Hawkesbury was among the world's best.
"I encourage our local growers, brewers, farmers, vintners, producers and the wider community to visit the 'Taste the Hawkesbury' exhibition to find out more about the potential growth opportunities Western Sydney International will bring to the Hawkesbury," Mr Knowd said.
Karen Lebsanft, co-owner of Kurrajong Kitchen, said the ease of having an airport "at your doorstep" would make the convenience of connecting with business partners and friends a breeze.
"I believe the ability to connect Hawkesbury businesses to the world utilising the airport is the next step in growth. Kurrajong Kitchen proudly takes the Hawkesbury to the nation, and now the opportunity to take it to the world has been made that little bit easier," Ms Lebsanft said.
Lee Etherington, owner of Kurrajong Australian Native Foods and Wild Hibiscus Flower Co, said: "Hopefully the airport will move some tourism further out and make my new distillery and cafe development more accessible for international and domestic visitors which will help me provide more jobs and investment to the Hawkesbury."
The Hawkesbury Show will take place at the Hawkesbury Showground in Clarendon from Friday, April 23 until Sunday, April 25.