New Mal for a very special customer!

Something a little different today... D'Arc is known for his High Performance Shortboards however the man can shape a mean Mal! This one here is for probably our most powerful customer Leader of the Opposition Mr. Tony Abbott! Mr. Abbott paid a visit to the factory recently and was amazed by our setup and even more amazed by D'Arc's boards. Here is his new mal ready for sliding! Below is a article on Mr. Abbott's visit to the factories of the Gold Coast...

"Like buying Australian made surfboards? Well, that is becoming a whole lot harder, not just because of cheap Asian imports but because the Australian surfboard industry is struggling to find workers.

Walk into most surfboard factories and you’ll find a veritable United Nations of overseas workers filling the sanding and glassing jobs that few locals seem to want.

So desperate is the situation getting, a group of Gold Coast boardmakers banded together recently to put their case to Federal Opposition leader Tony Abbott. Abbott, who’s not afraid of parading his longboard style to the media, stopped in at Darcy Surfboards’ Gold Coast factory to hear their concerns.

High on the list of issues for the board makers, including Stuart Darcy, Chris Garrett and Dan Macdonald, was the subject of trade apprenticeships for the surfboard industry. The surfboard industry has no formal qualifications for its workers, and sponsoring foreign workers can cost up to $72,000 a year.

Board manufacturers would like to a see a formal apprenticeship introduced and operated through TAFE, as well as compulsory labelling for cheap imported boards from China.

“Imagine if we could get a 17 or 18-year-old committed to a four year apprenticehsip, doing TAFE with modules in sanding, glassing, shaping, even business management and at the end they get a diploma in surfboard manufacturing,” said Bek Clarke, partner in Daniel Macdonald Shapes and the Curve surf shop.

Long-time shaper Stuart Darcy’s son Kye, who works for his dad, reckons most of his mates would rather get a trade than work in a surfboard factory. “It really seems like a dying industry. Most of my friends are getting into trades to broaden their opportunities,” Kye told the Gold Coast Bulletin."

- Tim Baker