James has been farming here for a while. For me, it has been more recent. When I moved here 16 years ago I really only started growing vegetables to fill in my day. Like many, I had left my career in the Sydney with no definite plan about what I would do next.
I had no experience but plenty of time. I was an enthusiastic cook and I had also spent time overseas wandering through markets of vibrant fresh fruit and vegetables. I knew the benefits of finding fresh and local produce and the most local I could find was from my own garden. Since then our vegetable garden has changed to suit our lifestyle at the time. Sometimes it is huge and highly productive, other times it is a weedy mess made up of random pockets of herbs and salad vegetables. I have learnt through experience what James has been telling me since university, soil preparation and quality are everything!
Our first order of chickens (live ones) arrived slightly before I did on the farm. Eggs, lamb and vegetables have always been our own. But the longer I lived here, the more questions I asked about the future use of the grains that we harvested and stored. Why didn’t we use them? Why did we grow wheat and chickpeas, sell it for a varied price (that we had absolutely no control over) and then buy it back from the supermarket? Why do we spend so much time and effort growing the best quality produce that we can to have it sold and put in large bulk storage of varying quality? Why do we take such care to prepare our lamb for ourselves but yet feel that our only option for selling is to provide commercial giants with our product. We sell under their terms, conditions and prices, knowing that their preparation reflects economic rationalisation, increased stress on the animal, while compromising on flavour.
For our family, we are not prepared to compromise on quality or flavour. We also have four children and both work so we recognise the importance of convenience.
Our aim is to provide you with the quality produce from our farm that we enjoy and make it conveniently available for you. How much time are you really spending each day in the supermarket thinking about your meal for that night? For us, a quick walk to the freezer to grab some lamb or covering chickpeas with water in the morning ready for our evening meal is much quicker and far less stressful. The meal prepared at the end of the day...well there is no comparison!
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