The Bruin family’s 128 hectare farm at Tyalgum Creek farm has been in the family for 40 years and theyhave been growing organically for more than 20 years – since Rod and Tania returned to the family property to take over the farm.
Summit Organics originally started out as Summit Coffee Plantations where they were producers of the first ‘Certified Organic’ coffee to be grown and processed in Australia. When they decided to transition to vegies their first vegetable crop was sweet potatoes and they now produce more than 50 varieties of vegies and herbs.
Their aim is to provide greater security and sustainability to the local food supply as well as increased production with a minimal ecological footprint. They continually trial new crops, crop covers and growing systems. Most important of all is the promotion of healthy soil and crops through excellent organic farming practices.
With most of the crops grown on an elevated, warm, frost free, red basalt shelf – an ideal location for small crops – Rod and Tania have been adding tunnel shelters and green houses to protect their crops from the extremes of the weather and ducks – yes duck invasions! Dams provide irrigation to the entire farm.
Farmers’ markets have made an enormous difference to Rod and Tania who found that sending produce to major capital cities meant huge costs in packaging and freight leaving very little in the back pocket to get ahead.
Now they both really enjoy the buzz that’s generated through the interaction with their customers at the farmers’ markets. Each week they hear what their customers think about their produce, they get feedback and answer many questions. It’s these conversations that they love.