are a small scale certified organic market garden located in Glenlyon
in the Central Victorian Highlands, 10 mins from the popular tourist
town of Daylesford, in the middle of the capital mineral spring/spa
region of Australia.
seasonal vegetables (many heirloom varieties), tomatoes (mostly
heirloom types), culinary herbs & rocambole (hard neck) garlic.
8 or so years
chose organic certification because all things considered, we feel it
helps provide a basic benchmark for practice standards, sustainable
practices & authenticity. This benchmark & the annual
independent farm auditing it requires are significant factors towards
upholding the integrity of organic growing, its products and ensuring
people’s right to choose what they eat is safeguarded by reliable
labelling, standards & market differentiation. Our
regular customers would probably buy from us anyway now, even if we
dropped org. cert. but consumers can’t always know their farmers
personally or be sure of what goes on at the farm week in & out. It
is not a perfect system at times and is costly for small growers but so
far on balance we think organic certification is worth it for us, the
public & towards upholding sustainable food production methods.
haven’t grown animals or their products to this point as farmers but we
are familiar with most of the Organic Standards set out (incl. for our
own eating choices) & we think they are very comprehensive &
suitably high standards for animal welfare. Animal welfare is certainly a
primary part of organic farming & even just in practical terms has
to be to uphold genuine organic growing principles & practices. We
haven’t seen any higher standards with any other genuine animal welfare
accreditation & in most cases organic is superior.
is a very large topic but in short, basically we oppose GM food,
certainly as it stands & has been presented/used so far & it
contravenes organic/biological farming ways. We believe the
Precautionary Principle needs to be rigorously applied in regards to GM
agriculture, ‘when an activity raises threats of harm to the
environment or human health, precautionary measures should be taken even
if some cause and effect relationships are not fully established
scientifically’ (Wingspread, Johnson Foundation, Jan.1998). As it
stands today, the risks are as yet not adequately studied or fully
assessed by the scientists and therefore potentially harbour unknown but
real environmental and health hazards. A major concern with GM
developments is the loss of independence in food production (mainly
targeted at developing countries so far) & we find it abhorrent that
a few multinational companies could be allowed to control seed banks
& the seed-chemical-fertiliser supply chain and its regulation (via
patents & biased, misleading marketing).
vegetables, herbs & garlic in particular (as opp to say meat),
probably the main challenge is overall labour intensity, associated high
costs of employing adequate labour to cover it & ongoing finding
good staff. Weeding is particularly demanding but with us being a market
garden so is the weekly harvesting routine for farmers’ markets,
restaurants & other direct sales.
Yes, definitely & beyond.
much smaller population of consumers compared to most countries to
support it & the limited message so far that is reaching the general
public about organic agriculture & it’s full true benefits for them
personally, for food sustainability & towards combating global
Leave it to the professionals – kidding lulz!! As a beginner start small, & build up each year as you gain
confidence & get to know your local climate & the unique
characteristics of your own soil (& perhaps whilst addressing soil
imbalances e.t.c.), backyard micro-climates & so forth. Talk to
& share with other gardeners, read widely from quality books
especially & as much Australia-relevant organic growing material as
possible (about your own state/climate area where possible). Try
growing different things/varieties (guided by climate zone & soil
type advice), persevere, enjoy the journey, the connection with nature
& the outdoors!
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