Russell and Maryanne Pitt’s farm is situated about 20 kilometres north of Bundaberg. It has been owned by Maryanne’s family since 1947, with Russell and Maryanne starting to share the farming with Maryanne’s parents in 1988, before taking over the farm in 1992. The farm is now run with the help of their daughter Carly who organises the packing shed, and their son Nathan who manages 5-6 backpackers and 6-7 locals for picking, harvesting and packing. Originally they used conventional farming methods but they always wanted to get away from using chemicals and the associated impacts on people and the environment. They have found that they don’t need the strong chemicals or poisons, which actually create a lot of problems on the farm. Buying chemicals also means giving large sums of money to the big foreign owned multi-national companies that supply the Australian market. Now the Pitts are certified organic and have their own eco-system within the farm where a good balance of predators controls pests through natural methods. They have reduced their eco-footprint and focus more on quality, taste and purity. They grow organic tomatoes, capsicum, eggplant, sweet potatoes, chilli, melons, pumpkin, basil, sugar snap peas, zucchinis, squash, cabbage, broccoli, passionfruit, corn, chokos and asian leafy greens. They also have both cattle and pigs on the farm and are currently in the process of increasing their pig numbers to turn waste food into money and to allow them to cut back on buying stock food. They are currently working out which breeds work best for their type of farm and are trying to create better meat by breeding with older style breeds.
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