1948, 11 Minutes
This short black and white film takes a look at the daily life and work of North Queensland sugarcane cutters.
Five million tons of sugarcane (1016 kg) have to be cut by hand, in backbreaking conditions. Itinerant workers contract with a cane grower and work in gangs to cut the cane and load it for transport to the sugar mills. They start early in the morning, then break for a hearty lunch and a mid-afternoon nap in the tropical heat, before heading back out into the fields again to work another shift until dusk. Cane cutting is hard work and you've got to be tough, but the pay is good and the industry itself means much to the thriving state of Queensland.
An Australian National Film Board Production. Produced by the Department of Information. © 2011 National Film and Sound Archive of Australia.