Organic farming a growing success story in Kempsey Shire

  • michael 

LEADING Macleay Valley Food Bowl producers and owners of Sweet Water Farm, Marcus Skipper and Sally Ayre-Smith have reported bumper conditions for planting a new season’s crop of sweet organic Russian garlic.

With the help of a group of French travellers, also known as ‘Willing Workers on Organic Farms’ or ‘WWOOFers’, a travelling couple and some neighbours, Sally and Marcus have just finished planting 1.5 tonnes of garlic.

Sally confirmed recent weather conditions had been ideal for planting.

“It is an amazing sight to see the beautiful, rich, dark-chocolate coloured soil of garlic beds, with the river in the background and all these beautiful people planting this crop,” she said.

The couple moved to the Macleay Valley from Sydney in 2007 and decided to become garlic farmers after purchasing their 25-acre property at Sherwood.

“Life was very stressful in Sydney. We had big careers and Marcus had a few health issues so we thought ‘that’s it we’re out of here’,” Sally explained.

“We drove up from Sydney and found this place and fell in love with that view.

“We were looking at how we could make a living so we had an agronomist come out to give us some advice. I decided to go to TAFE and did a Certificate III course in organic farming.

“I then bought the school’s garlic that year, which was a 100kg for $1000. We started with that and now we grow seven tonnes of commercial garlic a year.”

The thriving business has recently seen Sally and Marcus become involved in the development of NSW’s first certified organic distribution centre, which will be constructed at the Farrawell’s Industrial Estate adjacent to the Highway Service Centre.

The distribution centre will be owned and run by a number of local growers as well as South Australia based company, Natural Organics.

Sally says the construction of the $2 million centre, which will also feature a retail shop, is scheduled to begin in the near future, with an anticipated opening date of July 2017.

Kempsey Shire Council’s economic sustainability officer, Kristy Forche-Baird, said the construction of the centre made it a perfect time to establish an agribusiness in the Macleay Valley.

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Working alone in my house

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Far far away, behind the word mountains, far from the countries Vokalia and Consonantia, there live the blind texts. Separated they live in Bookmarksgrove right at the coast of the Semantics, a large language ocean.

Bootcamp Business Model Canvas the Game

Nor again is there anyone who loves or pursues or desires to obtain pain of itself, because it is pain, but because occasionally circumstances occur in which toil and pain can procure him some great pleasure. To take a trivial example, which of us ever undertakes laborious physical exercise, except to obtain some advantage from it?

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A small river named Duden flows by their place and supplies it with the necessary regelialia. It is a paradisematic country, in which roasted parts of sentences fly into your mouth. To take a trivial example, which of us ever undertakes laborious physical exercise, except to obtain some advantage from it?

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