'Monster' pineapple garners fame for vital cause

'Monster' pineapple garners fame for vital cause

'Monster' pineapple garners fame for vital cause

Updated 2 February 2018, 15:45 AEDT

A Cairns grower has nurtured a formidable fruit for two years, which even has its own Instagram account, before picking to auction off for charity.

A giant pineapple grown in a far north Queensland backyard is drawing attention on social media for all the right reasons.

Coral-Leah Kemp from Cairns nurtured the formidable fruit, which even has its own Instagram account, for two years before picking it this week to auction off for charity.

"I've been watching this mega pineapple grow for months and had no idea it would get so big," she said.

"It's the first pineapple I've ever grown and it's turned into a monster. It's quite an unusual shape as well."

Ms Kemp joked about her 6.8kg homegrown pineapple being the largest in the world and it is not far off the record length set by the Northern Territory's Christine McCallum in 2011.

At a whopping 35 centimetres in length and featuring a 14cm crown, the fructose-filled beast is longer than the record holder but misses the mark in weight and width.

Ms Kemp works as the program director for the annual charity event Ride for Isabel, which raises money for Stillbirth and Neonatal Death Support (Sands).

"It's certainly a unique thing to auction off, but the opportunity to raise much needed funds was too good to pass up," she said.

Funds support more than 105,000 families

News of the giant pineapple auction has made its way to Sands Australia's Melbourne headquarters this morning, with the charity's Bridget Sutherland impressed by the unique fundraising idea.

"One of the biggest problems for people who have suffered the loss of a baby is feeling isolated. So having images like this in their social media networks has helped addresses that isolation," Ms Sutherland said.

It is an issue that devastates more than 105,000 Australian families every year, with one in four pregnancies ending in the loss of a baby.

The national charity assists through phone and email services, online chat, as well as face-to-face support.

"Pregnancy loss or stillbirth is a major bereavement and with that comes traumatic grief," Ms Sutherland said.

"That's where our trained volunteer supporters come in. Every one of them has experienced the death of a baby themselves.

"We need to ensure our services are available regardless of location or cultural and linguistic background."

In far north Queensland, pineapple is being sold at $2.29 per kilogram, meaning Ms Kemp's giant fruit would sell for about $15.50 if sold at market price.

But online bids have already surpassed that amount many times, having moved into the hundreds of dollars.

Sands provides support, information and education to anyone affected by the death of a baby before during or shortly after birth and can be contacted on 1300 072 637.

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