Our Food Hub Projects Officer Dr Emily Samuels-Ballantyne spoke to ABC Hobart recently about the Huon Valley Food Hub project and the benefits it brings to the local community. The story also features local grower and resident Toni Baker, Aboriginal Key Teacher at Sacred Heart School, Geeveston, and proud Melukurdee woman Alarna Page, and Indigenous fire practitioner and proud Palawa man Jason Smith.
The food hub program is currently running a Farmgate Blitz Program that supports and engages small farmers in the valley to create the foundation for growing produce to be supplied locally. These are running from now until the end of December.
Dr Samuels-Ballantyne said the fundamentals for building a successful food system starts with increasing our availability and diversity of fresh locally grown produce.
“Our farmgate blitz program engages with small farmers in the Huon Valley, helping them to build their capabilities in growing a diverse range of produce.
“Leveraging the pool of local knowledge and expertise from our existing regenerative farming community, we have also invited mentors and trainers to support the project by passing on their skills, knowledge and experience to build a community of knowledge and practice.”
To view the full blitz program, visit the Huon Valley Food Hub website.
The Farmgate Blitz Program is one of four activation projects happening from now until May 2023. The Sacred County and pop-up storytelling project is about bridging a deeper connection with Country. Run by Sacred Heart Catholic School (SHCS) at Geeveston, Tasmanian Aboriginal elders are passing on knowledge of traditional edible natives and regenerative land management techniques with students in the Huon Valley. The aim of the project is to continue building resilience, sustainability and care for self, community and country, through education, regeneration and connection to place, food and people.
Other programs include local produce pop-ups in various towns. The pop-ups will distribute local produce, celebrate local food, and provide insightful educational experiences around the importance of sourcing and supporting local producers. Emerging from the co-design workshop process was the importance of ensuring equal and fair access to local produce for all members in our community. With this in mind, the food hub initiated a prototype that will enable food insecure folk access to fresh local produce through an adapted food voucher scheme.
View all the details of the activation projects here.
Photo credit: ABC News – Luke Bowden