The Sprout Small Producer of the Year Award is an annual award, nominated by you, the local community to recognise and award a farmer in Tasmania who you think is doing a great job at 'Growing Good' in your local community!
This award is for a small farming business, producing either fresh fruit or vegetables or meat, in an ethical, sustainable and small scale method in Tasmania.
We look for farmers how:
- produces amazing food
- contributes to and engages with their local community and the food community in Tasmania
- collaborates with others and shares knowledge
- strives to leave the land they are on in a better state than when it came to them
The Sprout Producer Award has been sponsored by Blundstone Australia since 2016.
Our 2020 Winners!
Congratulations to Lauren Byrne & Michael Layfield of Felds Farm
Two vibrant young chefs turned farmers - becoming primary producers of vegetables, fruit, eggs and bread was a natural progression for their passion to offer delicious, local food to the community. Supplying neighbours, local farmers markets and restaurants with a diverse range of healthy and sustainably grown produce, Felds Farm support sustainable growth for their local community.
Moving to Tasmania and seeing the local food industry and meeting the equally passionate people involved in it has inspired them to fulfill their own goals of producing good quality, local food on a small scale farm.
In 2020 they have adapted to the challenges produced by COVID19 and produced their own online marketplace for their Vegetable Boxes to be delivered to the customer direct. Stepping outside of their comfort zones and developing a service that meets both the needs of their business and their loyal customer base. Check out their new site and see what they have on offer.
A selection of comments from their passionate supporters:
"This young couple are such hard working, good natured and enthusiastic chefs turned farmers. They really understand the needs of the industry which they supply and are now producing excellent food products in an ethical and sustainable way, as well as being wonderful representatives for small scale farming."
"They produce amazing food - so amazing, they won Gold at the delicious produce awards. They contribute to the community - they pivoted their business in March when COVID shut down Harvest Market....they are able to reflect and change their operation to suit both themselves and their client base...These guys work so hard, produce amazing food that they are generous with, as well as their knowledge, and they do it having entered the industry as young people without a farming background, without an asset base, and they are showing us all how it can be done. They are so inspirational for small farmers and also for young people who want to enter the agricultural industry as farmers."
"Lovely friendly & humble couple who are passionate & enthusiastic producers of amazingly delicious food. I think they had not long started their venture here in Northern Tasmania when COVID struck. They work really hard & deserve to be recognised for what they do."
Listen to The Tasmanian Country Hour with Tony Briscoe where he crosses live to Fiona Breen, at the annual Sprout Cross Pollinate 2020 Conference, and chats with our General Manager, Jennifer Robinson, (17min, 13 sec), and to Lauren from Felds Farm about their award win (21min, 30 sec).
Meet the past winners of this community driven award, hear what they have to say about their award win and learn about their farms and produce.
Cornerstone Farm (no longer in operation)
2019 Winners - Kate & Iain : Leap Farm and Tongola Cheese
Kate and Iain were nominated as the 2019 Small producer of the year, by our Tassie food community. Lisa and Iain received such amazing feedback from those in the community who nominated them for their hard work, dedication and approach to their amazing produce. Nominations listed attributes like energetic, community minded, valuable to our local community and passionate - and Kate and Iain were so humbled by their nomination and their win for 2019.
Tongola Cheese and Leap Farm are located in Tasmania's South East at beautiful Bream Creek, home to free range beef cattle and goats who live carefree, healthy happy lives and provide Kate and Iain the opportunity to supply the community with quality goat and aged beef meats, and traditional hand-made goats milk cheese. The love what they do and bring passion and enthusiasm to their farm on a daily basis. You can follow their progress at the farm on their website or on their Facebook pages for Leap Farm and Tongola Cheese
2018 - Lisa & Adam's Story : Cornerstone Farm
Lisa & Adam were nominated as the 2018 Small producer of the year, by our Tassie food community.
This award means so much to the producers who receive it, as it is recognition from their community for all the hard work, dedication and passion they have for sustainable agriculture on a small scale. Lisa attended our Cross Pollinate Conference at Mount Gnomon Farm in Penguin on the NW coast of Tasmania, and was humbled by the nominations she received.
They are located in the pristine West Tamar region of Northern Tasmania and are completely family owned and operated. They produce Suffolk Lamb, Angus Beef and Pasture Raised Pork, and they are passionate about giving their local community the opportunity to buy premium quality, farm raised, grass fed meat direct from their local farmer.
2017 - Phil and Selina's story : Long Name Farm
Phil and Selina were nominated by you, the Tassie food community, as the 2017 Sprout Small Producer of the Year!
Image: (L-R) Phil, Selina and Greg Findlay (Blundstone Australia) at Willie Smith's Apple Shed, Cross Pollinate Conference
It was great to see them so humbled on the night, when they received their award at the Cross Pollinate Long Table dinner, and to hear from them about their journey so far. They farm rare and heritage breed pigs on Tasmania’s scenic East Coast. Wessex Saddleback, Tamworth and Berkshire pigs freely roam 40 coastal acres in the picturesque hamlet of Little Swanport. As of November last year, both Phil and Selina are full time on farm, which is an incredible achievement!
If you are keen to meet them, why not head to Farm Gate Market in Hobart on the 1st and 3rd Sunday of each month, you can collect your pork order at the same time, or order your own Pig In A Box and they'll deliver it to your door.
Thanks to Blundstone Australia Phil and Selina have shiny (or should we say now...muddy) new boots for around the farm, as well as $500 cash, and mentoring time with some expert staff from within the Blundstone Australia team.
2016 - Alex's Story : Golden Valley Farm
Thank you to those who nominated a small producer for this award. Nominations were reviewed and we are so thrilled to announce that for 2016 - the Small Producer Award recipient was Alex Taylor, from Golden Valley Farm in Cygnet TAS.
Alex started Golden Valley Farm in 2010 with a spade, a mattock and a head full of dreams. Six years later Golden Valley Farm turned over almost $100,000 in fresh, local, organic vegetables, using intensive plantings of succession crops over two locations, providing a year-‘round income.
Alex believes that local organic market gardens are a no-brainer: the produce is fresher and more nutritious, wealth remains in the community, social capital is strengthened, and all this with minimal food miles and no toxic inputs!
Alex still finds time for dreaming amidst the hustle and bustle of his four-season farm.
Check out Alex's blog where he chats about his farm experiences and beliefs. This article in particular features his reflection and part of his thank you speech upon receiving the Sprout Small Producer Award. Great work Alex! Well done.