The Event |
Our Melbourne launch combined food, films and very special guests.
It was a platform to come and learn more about the way food works, how things are changing and to hear it directly from the change-makers.

It’s a one-night only, pop-up bonanza with a food-film screening and expert panel discussion; an evening of interaction at its finest that calls upon a curiosity of mind for the Q&A session and creates a direct line of dialogue between audiences and the people who are responsible for getting their food to our tables.

It was also a chance to sample the wares of Melbourne’s finest producers, have a few drinks and socialise with some fellow food minded folk. Our friends from The Pizza Club cooked up a feast fit for a room full of fine foodies.

The Films |
The Growing Food Project is a short documentary exploring Melbourne’s local food movement and community food initiatives, where people are coming together to build local, fair and sustainable food systems. Written and directed by Rasha Tayeh.

Vidamour Farm is a film to influence and strengthen local social cohesion. Mable Vidamour shares how she offered her family’s property to the community for public food production. Set on the Mornington Peninsula, Mable discusses how her husband’s stroke has influenced their life on the farm and their engagement with the community. Directed by Stacey Chilcott for Green Collar Productions.

Speakers |
Paul Miragliotta from Farmer Incubator is working hard to grow young farmers. Farmer Incubator provides upcoming farmers with: fields to innovate in, time to develop, part-time employment and experience, and importantly a pathway to small-scale farming—successfully and independently. They’ve created a small not-for-profit organisation, which nurtures enthusiastic, but novice farmers, who are (almost, but not quite) ready for farming life. Farmer Incubator are committed to regeneration, revitalisation, and relocalisation of food systems, communities and their environments. They are a real testing ground for new farmers and their proposed ventures into farming. The Incubator aims to get people who are passionate about farming food, caring for the environment and strengthening community—onto the land.

Julie Francis from Moffitts Farm will introduce the Comfortable Farming system that she runs in conjunction with her parents to produce Wiltipoll sheep, timber and ecosystem services. Moffitts Farm, 60km north of Melbourne, is a “regenerative farm” – not just sustaining natural resources, but building them. The Comfortable Farming methods used ensure that ecosystem services are protected and enhanced – including carbon dioxide sequestration, provision of quality habitat, delivering clean water into creeks and groundwater, and improved soil health. Julie and her family aim to join- the -dots about farming practice to demonstrate that it can be undertaken in conjunction with high animal welfare and environmental sustainability outcomes, which consumers have a right to expect.

Sam Pendergast believes in fair pay for fair work, and so when he found out that farmer Dario Pulsoni was being forced to either sell his pears for a pittance or start considering ripping out his 100 year old trees, Sam decided to step in, and Faire Ferments Co-Op Cider was born. Facing the closing of regional processing plants and a shifting market, Goulburn Valley farmers were unable to secure a good price for their produce. Sam decided to start his cider business to ensure he could pay farmers a fair price for their fruit. Sam’s work with the Goulburn Valley Food Co-Op has seen Faire Ferments make use of some of the small factories around the region that are no longer at full capacity – an approach the Co-Op describes as a “virtual factory”. One factory’s space is used for the brewing, another for the bottling, another for the labelling, and so on. Such collaborative efforts have helped maintain a local industry, and preservation of regional culture and community is a primary motivation for Sam and everyone involved in the co-op project. Faire Ferments is striving to ignite some hope for the future in the Goulburn Valley, and also shed light on some of the difficulties that our local farmers are facing when industry heads offshore.

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