Our friend, Ian Cuming, from Beenak Farm dropped a ute load of his kiwi off at the warehouse this week. I first met Ian about 10 years ago when he was teaching a biodynamic farming course at CERES. With his gentle ways and deep knowledge of BD farming he was a much loved teacher. And you just have to look at the beautiful moose jumper he's wearing in the photo above to know he's the definition of a genial human being.
Ian was telling me about the wwoofers he has at his farm at the moment. No, they're not a kind of kiwifruit seeking canine, they're people, often young backpackers, who trade 4-6 hours work a day for room and board and the chance to be involved in the daily life of a farm. Ian's wwoofers (wwoof stands for willing workers on organic farms) are currently helping him harvest this year's 10 ton kiwifruit crop. They are an integral part of Ian's farming business, but as many wwoof hosts will attest, with wwoofers you never know who will walk down your driveway next. Ian says his wwoofers range from incredibly keen and self-motivated workers looking to skill themselves up as farmers to those who see themselves more as hotel-style guests - an illusion he says his partner, Anna, has special skills in "readjusting". Ian and Anna's wwoofer aided kiwis will be in-season for another few months - if you'd like to get hold of some you can find them here in the webshop and if you'd like to know more about wwoofing go here.
Like to know more about cheese or bees or pruning trees?
The other day I was on the website of this great local farming organisation from Tasmania called Sprout and among other things I noticed they offered gardening and farming courses. I got excited and thought to myself we should really do something like that for Fair Food members until I had the deflating, "oh yeah, we do do that" moment. So all I had to do to make the great CERES workshops and short course easily findable for Fair Food members was to put a "Workshops" button on the Fair Food home page that takes you to the CERES workshops site. That was easy.
There's three main streams of workshops; gardening, cooking and craft. Among the cooking ones you'll find fermentation, raw foods, sausage making and sourdough baking as well as the incredibly popular cheese making section - honestly I don't know what it is but people can't seem to get enough of learning how to make cheese! There are also part-time short courses like the permaculture design course and it's popular follow-up urban farmer courses. If you've ever done a permaculture design course and come out of it so full of ideas and inspiration but are stuck in a sort of limbo about just how to put it all into practical action then the two The Complete Urban Farmer courses could be your kind of thing. The CUF's (I don't think anybody actually calls them that) get you hands-on with organic gardening, home orcharding, chook wrangling, even bee-keeping and if that's what you're into there's two starting in August and one in September.
Have a great week
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