By Hannah Martin, Sprout Board member & Projects Subcommittee Chair
We’re thrilled to be running the program again next year, thanks to the support of six Tasmanian businesses and individuals. That means we’re looking for our next batch of small and start-up food producers. As you know, the program involves online learning modules, practical on-farm sessions and mentoring from Sprout’s multi-skilled members and sponsors. The program guides producers through their start-up year, with insights in things like crop management, value-adding, branding, marketing, weed control and more.
Last year's producers included market gardeners, nursery owners, highland beef breeders, asparagus and berry farmers. If you have a small or start up property growing food or value adding from food products (you may even be a viticulturalist or cider maker) then this is the program for you!
Once the year-long program is complete, Producers have the chance to join the Sprout Producer alumni, using the Sprout logo on their products and accessing the e-farmers market Fork to Fork.
For more details about becoming a Sprout Producer, see Sprout Producer Scholarships. Winners of the 2016 Scholarships will be announced at the Cross Pollinate Conference in November.
Sprout Producers Program 2015
Our 2015 batch of Producers are progressing through the program with great results. Recent progress reports show our scholarship recipients have benefited enormously from taking part in the program. Among the biggest benefits has been the ability to provide focus and clarity to their work, and develop a refined approaching to marketing their products.
Producers also said the Program reinvigorated their passion for the work they do and challenged them to try new things- often with great results!
Producers reported that one of the best things about the Program is the Field Days, when they host fellow Producers at their farms, learning from each other and their Sprout mentors. This weekend the Sprout team are heading to Bec Lynd’s farm, Settler’s Point in Plenty, where she runs the Scottish Highland cattle for her business Big River Highland Beef. You may have seen the Sprout team and Producer Bec Lynd in the media lately- they’ve had some great information to share about the program and Bec’s fantastic products.