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Dundeoo farmer returns NSW’s 6 millionth drum

Published: 20-12-2012

An award winning Merino stud owner has earned another worthy trophy after returning drumMUSTER’s six millionth drum in NSW earlier this month.

Lou Armstrong, who runs and owns the 120-year-old Pemcaw Merino Stud east of Dunedoo, brought in 237 drums to the drumMUSTER Dunedoo site run by the local Lions Club.

Lou said the drums had contained animal health products to protect his prized Ewes and Rams from pests and diseases. He said he uses drumMUSTER regularly and usually makes an annual delivery, but this year he left it late and delivered the 6 millionth drum just in time.

“I’ve been using drumMUSTER since its inception,” he said.“Like most farmers we were trying to be more environmentally sustainable.”

“I heard about the program through media, and I also saw the sticker on the drum saying drumMUSTER, so I had a look at it and thought it was a good idea.”

Lou said without the help of the Dunedoo Lions Club he wouldn’t have a convenient spot to off-load his containers.

Volunteers at the Lions Club took over operations from the Warrumbungle Council in 2009 and have made it their own, setting up the compound on their block of land opposite the saleyards.

In less than three years the club has collected 17,400 drums.

Trained drumMUSTER inspector Ken Warren, with the help of wife Mary, inspects drums from farmers across the region.

Ken said he wasn’t surprised the state had reached 6 million already. “We are doing so well locally, and they do add up.

“All of those drums would otherwise be sitting in paddocks,” he said.

For each drum Ken and other club inspectors take in,drumMUSTER pays 25 cents to the club which goes towards locally run charity programs.

Mary said her husband’s passion for drumMUSTER has helped fund a handful of projects, including recently providing new TVs for the hospital.

“We also donate to a lot of Lions Club projects in other areas but mostly the money stays here and we help local people,” she said. “Lou was lucky. It just so happens he’s drum was the 6 millionth one when he brought it in. It’s a huge farming area and it’s the backbone of this town. Lou is one of the many who brings our drums to us.”

Northern NSW drumMUSTER Consultant Phil Tucker said the Lions Clubs is the glue that holds Dunedoo together.

“I can remember when we had the first meeting with the Lions Club to discuss the program and run the inspector course,” he said. “We had more than a dozen members. I’m used to only training a handful!”

“While they appreciated the likely income from the program, it was the community spirit of wanting to be a part of program that helps local farmers.”

The milestone comes off the back of a successful year for drumMUSTER, which collected its 20 millionth drum nation-wide this year. That represents more than 25,000 tonnes of waste avoiding landfill and in turn being recycled into new and useful things again, like plastic cable covers, wheelie bins and pipes.

For any further information on the drumMUSTER program, call 1800 008 707 or log on to For all local enquiries, get in touch with drumMUSTER’s  Northern NSW  Consultant, Phil Tucker on 0427 925 274. 28 November 2012