Our Vision – Farm fresh produce direct from the producer 2017-08-17T12:20:01+00:00

OUR VISION

FARM FRESH PRODUCE DIRECT FROM THE PRODUCER

The Mary Valley Growers Co-operative is a community operated co-operative for growers and producers in the Mary Valley region. Produce is available through our e-market, local markets and the co-operative services businesses and customers in the Mary Valley, Noosa, Gympie and wider Sunshine Coast region.

THE MARY VALLEY COUNTRY HARVEST COOPERATIVE

The specific reason for establishing this cooperative is to support a network of small growers and food producers working together to make their businesses

  • easier to run
  • more efficient
  • more profitable

What a legal entity such as the cooperative will enable…

  • Enter into negotiations with the State Government to lease premises that would suit the operations of a food hub
  • Apply for grants and funding to engage in further activities for the benefit of members, such as renovations of leased premises, purchase of infrastructure (for example marquees, trestles, mobile coolroom, mobile certified kitchen), offer training programs and run field days.

Ways these can be achieved…

  • cooperative sales and distribution of members produce/products (e.g. through liason with consumers co-ops and direct supply to restaurants, cafes and providors)
  • collaborative production (to meet large orders and to reduce the impact of gluts and shortages)
  • training, support and mentoring (e.g., we have been given support to start a ‘growers school’ which will target new landholders or those looking to start a small food-based business)
  • cooperative bulk purchase and handling of materials, equipment and farming inputs (e.g. crates, cartons, fertiliser, mulch, labels, consumables)
  • coordinating cooperative use storage facilities (cold rooms, freezers, dry goods storage)
  • investigating the viability of cooperative labour hire and insurance opportunities.

GROWER SUPPORT

At the heart of the Mary Valley Country Harvest Co-operative is the idea that small growers and businesses involved in the local food supply chain can benefit from sharing information and working together in practical ways  to make more efficient use of their time and capital than what they can achieve by ‘going it alone’ in every aspect of their business.

Apart from the co-operative marketing,  sales and distribution of members produce, some of the other ways that the co-op members support each other are:

  • Organising joint training and education activities so everyone doesn’t need to “reinvent the wheel” when developing or  refining their own production system
  • Organising the shared bulk purchase and delivery  of materials and services.
  • Organising and administering joint accreditation and  licencing schemes for growers (eg. registered egg production , CareFarmed certification)

LOCAL FOOD GROUPS

Mary Valley Country Harvest produce is delivered fresh to a number of locations on the Sunshine Coast and the Mary Valley each week.  Most people purchase weekly $30 mixed bags of produce, ordered each week through a number of neighbourhood buyers groups.

The co-op also supplies bulk orders to several food cooperatives, cafes and retail outlets on the coast.  However, because this service only supplies fresh produce grown in the Mary Valley, mostly produced under CareFarmed ™ principles, the variety of produce available each week changes with the season and local growing conditions.

This service is coordinated via email and If you would like to find out more about it, phone Elaine on 0459 225 399, or email DagunGrowersMarket@gmail.com.

Get Local. With Mary Valley Country Flavours.

If you aren’t already using local food, now is the time to ‘Get Local’ with
Mary Valley 
food outlets and producers participating in the Mary Valley Country Flavours project.

MARY VALLEY COUNTRY (MVC) FLAVOURS

Mary Valley Country (MVC)  Flavours is designed to support small tourism businesses and promote the use of local food by enhancing the visitor experience.

When registered with the ‘Flavours’ program, whether you are a grower or food provider, you can utilise the logo and benefit from the promotion it will provide.

Get local is the message, as there is strength in working together to create a regional identity for food grown or made in the Mary Valley.

Regional Australia report on agritourism in 2010 found that Australia’s urbanised populations have an increasing desire to connect to ‘the farm’, such as knowing where and how their food is made.

Through agritourism and food tourism experiences, consumers increase their knowledge of primary production and farming techniques. They can appreciate the aesthetic experiences—what they see, taste, hear, smell, and feel—and the learning opportunity. This kind of tourism increases their connection with growers and rural landscapes.

Agritourism and food tourism enterprises can allow farmers to increase their farm-related income with the general aim to help farmers stay on the farm. This project was initiated by peak community organisation Mary Valley Inc. Mary Valley Country Harvest Co-operative now administers the program.

LOGO-get-local

LOCAL FOOD INITIATIVES

Mary Valley Tourism
www.maryvalleycountry.com.au

MaryValley Inc.
www.themaryvalley.com.au

Gympie Gold Regional Produce
www.gympieregionalproduce.com.au

Mary Valley Country Flavours
www.maryvalleycountry.com.au/hot-deals/mary-valley-country-flavours

Gympie Gold Regional Produce Food Trail Map (via Lagoon Pocket B&B)
http://lagoonpocket.com/gympie-food-trail-map

Buy Mary Valley produce at
our e-Market.

Every Friday from 3pm.

VISIT E-MARKET

Get Local. Support your Mary Valley farmers and producers.