Olive grove gets green tick
MOUNT Egerton olive grove, Manna Hill Estate, has been named Australia’s first certified regenerative farm by international non-profit A Greener World.
The small, 2500-tree country property produces table olives, organic extra virgin olive oil, soap, and balm.
Owner Campbell Mercer said he’s aiming to promote good soil health through composting, biochar, mulching, and cover cropping, and by making biofertilisers, all to ensure the ground holds water, and evaporation is limited.
“Here at Manna Hill Estate, we are passionate and committed to producing healthy organic food and skincare products, using farming methods that care for our environment,” he said.
“Our focus on regenerative agricultural techniques helped us to win consecutive gold medals in the 2020, 2021, and 2022 Australian International Olive Awards competition.”
The AGW certification seeks to acknowledges socially responsible farms with a commitment to sustainability and regeneration, the environment, soil, water and air quality, animal welfare, and biodiversity.
“We chose to certify with A Greener World because they have a global footprint, and their robust certification offers a transparent, independent, third-party validation of our farming techniques and processes,” Mr Mercer said.
“Although the concept of regenerative farming is currently not well known among Australian consumers, we anticipate that this will rapidly evolve, and that our hard-won certified regenerative by AGW logo will become critical to our marketing success.
“It provides customers with the comfort and assurance that we really are farming how we say we are.”
A Greener World UK and Europe executive director Wayne Copp said the organisation is proud to work with the regional Victorian business.
“We know the collection of farming practices described as regenerative has huge potential to put the brakes on, and even reverse, many of the negative impacts associated with intensive agriculture,” he said.
“Manna Hill Estate [is] the world’s first Certified Regenerative by AGW olive producer, and we are delighted that Campbell has chosen us as the logo his customers can trust to deliver genuinely positive outcomes on the farm, at the table, and for the planet.”