Virtuous eggy circle
Each Wednesday when he brings his eggs in from Abundance Farm in Raglan just North West of Ballarat to the Fair Food warehouse in Preston, Alex also collects our green waste to take back to feed his chooks. All that not-quite-right fruit and veg that didn’t make the grade goes up the Western Freeway to make more eggs to bring back into town next week and so the virtuous circle goes.
We started selling Alex and Kali’s eggs exactly a year ago now (that’s them above with their new maremma chicken guard dog, Shanti). It’s been inspiring and joyful watching them transform their 97 acre farm. With the help of friends and volunteers – tens of thousand of trees have been planted and an apple orchard has been put in. An excavator has dug hundreds of metres of earth swales, ducklings brought in as garden weeders and a garlic crop harvested and braided. The first alpacas and calves have been born on the property and an orphan gosling by the name of Ryan has been nursed back from the brink and become a farm fixture.
Stories like Alex and Kali’s are the ones that give me so much joy. To be able to support new organic farmers in the exciting early days as they find their feet is one of Fair Food’s reasons for being. Because these are the people who will be feeding us in the decades to come when the farmers we rely on today have long retired – it’s got to be the best investment we can make.
You can find Abundance Farm eggs here
And then our fingers brushed among the oxalis
Just in case you were curious about what yesterday’s weed dating down at Joe’s Garden looked like – here it is above. There’s no hiding behind a cute online profile and an Aperol Spritz out here and after a morning in the field you really know if your future partner is going to be able to feed you from that backyard veggie plot.
Organic seeds to get compulsory fungicide?
Another one of those “what are they thinking” days down at The Department of Agriculture and Water Resources has resulted in an idea to fumigate all imported broccoli, cauliflower, kale, rocket, cabbage, turnip, bok choy, brussels sprouts and radish seed entering the country – including organic seeds.
The result of treating organic seeds with fungicide is that they are no longer organic! Frances Michaels from Green Harvest Seeds says that Australian seed companies, organic farmers and home gardeners rely very heavily on imported vegetable seeds – 98% of our seeds are imported. This means the range of organic or pesticide-free vegetables grown in Australia we would be able to grow would be greatly reduced.
Why you ask? Because, says, Michaels, most organics seeds are packed by hand or small machines – so suddenly you’re handling fungicide covered seed and what organic seed company is going to do that to their employees and if they do how can they sell them as organic?
The new regime also results in increased seed costs for small seed companies and as they stop importing treated seeds we’ll get a greatly reduced range of vegetable varieties. It’s almost as if the big seed companies thought this up themselves
Check out the petition here
Have a great week