LOCKYER Valley tourism operators are using the Ekka to encourage Brisbanites to skip their next beach trip in favour of one to the bush.
Ripcord Skydiving owner John Friswell stood outside the Lockyer Valley stall in the Ekka's Agricultural Pavilion on Wednesday encouraging as many people as he could to look west for their next holiday.
"For the same amount of time it takes to drive to the beach you can do something completely different," he said.
"If you drive through the Lockyer Valley with your windows down you can smell the vegies everywhere. We want people to know that this is where their food comes from and how important it is to buy and eat locally."
Lockyer Valley Regional Council regional development office Tracy Vellacott said the initiative was designed to encourage the growth of food-based tourism in the area.
"A lot of farmers in the Lockyer Valley have stalls with their vegetables outside their farms, or will take their food to farmer's markets. So if you want to buy straight from the farmer you can," she said.