Felco Manufacturing aids farming community
- From the August 2015 issue.
Having spent most of his life working in Queensland’s drought-stricken north, Vella Haulage’s George Vella knows all too well how tough life can be for rural businesses – which is why he is now using his fleet of Felco tankers to support them.
Growing up on a family farm in the remote agricultural town of Sarina, George Vella, sole operator of Vella Haulage, is well accustomed to dealing with adversity: Businesses in the area regularly fall victim to droughts so severe that rainfall is about as common as a solar eclipse. According to the ABC’s 7:30 Report, more than 40 shires across Queensland have suffered from droughts over the last few years, forcing many a local business to either downsize or shut down for good – a situation that draws an uncomfortable response from George.
“Being from the farm myself and working in that environment, I know how difficult it is to run and maintain a business and how hard it is for those people and their families. It’s tough going, especially since you have no control over the elements,” he says. “Many of my customers have fallen on hard times because of the droughts and it really hurts to see them struggle.”
According to George, his involvement in the transport industry – he started out in 1999 with little more than a business idea and ample enthusiasm – has put him in a position where he can now actively provide help and support to clients caught up in such a situation. “The great thing about the trucking industry is that it connects people and equipment, and that’s a quality we really need up here when the drought strikes,” he says.
Determined to not let his customers’ plight and other drought-affected farming businesses go down, he recently started working with Brian Egan, founder of charity organisation Aussie Helpers. Using an AB-triple tanker he purchased from Felco in December 2014, George delivers free molasses to farms in the region, as well as hay and supplies to those who don’t have the equipment to pick it up – all on top of his day-to-day job of supplying liquid fertiliser to the sugar cane farming industry.
The full story is in the July edition of Trailer. To get your copy, click here.