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cultivating success -Agenda

Sunday 25th June 2023

day 1 – conference – MOONAH ARTS CENTRE, HOBART

Monday 26th June 2023

day 2 – farm tours – coal river valley

Look, it’s no secret that as small producers there are many barriers to being productive and profitable, with access to land and access to capital being the two main ones. We know there is little to no support from banks, other forms of funding are hard to come by, there are no start-up grants or loan schemes for small-scale agriculture, and you’re often classed as hobby farmers.

Add to this the fact that farming requires long hours producing products sold for small margins, and that governments are incentivised to keep food prices low as house prices and cost of living rise, it means the barriers to being profitable are beyond complex.

At Sprout we continue to advocate for broader, more systematic changes to the food and farming systems, and for further recognition of the role small producers play, however this won’t be done overnight. It could be tempting to use Cross Pollinate to discuss the complicated challenges that we all see, however this could easily result in an unproductive and, honestly, a rather depressing day. Instead we see the conference as an opportunity for upbeat yet robust discussions, and are committed to producing a positive experience for all.

Cross Pollinate is for everyone and anyone. You don’t need to be a Sprout member to attend, nor do you have to be a farmer. We believe anyone who loves food and cares where it comes from will be interested in the event, and we’d love to see as many members of the public as possible.

day 1 – conference

Sunday 25th June – Moonah Arts Centre, Hobart

Day 1 is the main event. You can download the full program here

We have an amazing line up of speakers from farming and non-farming backgrounds who will give a series of short talks centred around creative ideas to increase productivity and profitability in our lives and businesses. The day will be a fun, fast-paced and thought-provoking event that will stimulate ideas, generate discussion and help change behaviours.

Details of each speaker can be found in the Presentation section below.

Tickets for the conference will be sold separately to the day of farm tours and include morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea. There will also be drinks available at the end of the conference and are to be paid for at time of purchase. A full program will be emailed once tickets are purchased.

day 2 – farm tours

Monday 26th June – Coal River Valley

Day 2 will be a bus tour of four farms in the Coal River Valley, each of whom have a story to tell when it comes to staying financially viable.

First up we will be visiting Sprout’s co-founder Tony Scherer at Rocky Top Farm. Tony will be joined by Michael and Lauren from Felds Farm, who are now growing at the farm. We will also see the section of the property being farmed by the Rocky Top Collective.

From there we will head to Coaldale Walnuts to visit Phil, Jane, Sophie and Brad, to discuss how they’ve made a viable business and their plans for family succession. We then drive to Littlewood Berry Farm to meet Sophie Nichols where we will learn about her journey and the reasons she established the berry farm, before ending the day at Ripple Farm with Rachael Treasure and Dan Lore. Here we will listen to Rachael and Dan speak about the ways they are improving the productivity of the land, as well as some of their ideas for creating further ‘ripple effects’. Here you will also have a chance to enjoy drinks, nibbles and chance to catch up with friends old and new.

Tickets for the farm tours will be sold separately to the conference and numbers are limited. To ensure you grab a spot we advise you book early. Price includes transport via bus to all farms (due to parking limitations separate travel is not permitted – if anyone has a disability that will prevent them from accessing the bus, or that will limit access to the farms please get in touch to discuss). All food is BYO.


Click below to see the speakers and presentations we have lined up for Cross Pollinate 2023.


Tickets now on sale.


Find out how to sponsor Cross Pollinate 2023.