Home' Grower : February 2012 Contents The South Australian Grower -- February 2012
A STRONGLY held commitment to growing and selling
the highest-quality organic produce and operating her
business with the utmost integrity has been the key to
success for organic vegetable grower Monika Fiebig.
She is the name and brains behind Monika's Organics'
business and brand, a 4.8-hectare property at Golden
Grove which she created from scratch with her eldest
son and business partner Daniel Quattrocchi.
"I started from nothing and have built the business up:
we pack on farm, have all our own branding and also
sell wholesale," Monika said.
Point-of-difference: She has created a point-of-
difference from other growers by taking greater control
of her markets -- which include Coles in South Australia
and the Chapley group's Foodland stores -- and selling
through Adelaide Produce Markets.
High standards: Monika's Organics specialises in
growing 100 per cent certified organic produce that is
independently audited and fully traceable. Produce
grown includes seasonal vegetables and bunch lines,
such as potatoes, carrots, spring onions, spinach,
beetroot, zucchini, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, garlic,
sweet corn and leeks, among others.
The farm was originally run along conventional lines but
in 2002, Monika made the move to organics, a three-
year process. "It has been very important to me, right
the way through, to maintain the highest standards in
producing organic food. I don't deal with conventional
produce at all and, although there have been many
challenges along the way, the result has been the
development of a quality-focused brand that consumers
know they can trust," she said.
Marketing: Challenges from "the big, multimillion dollar
producers" have been met by a strategy of vertical
integration, to increase product affordability for
consumers and gain market security through dealing
directly with supermarkets as a wholesaler. Monika's
Organics has packed on-farm since 2008 and developed
a recognisable logo that enhances customer loyalty.
Monika says a challenge for the organic industry is
continuing to grow its integrity and recognition among
consumers while maintaining affordability in an
increasingly tight marketplace. To this end,
Training: Monika has become involved at a national
grower level through AUSVEG and last year took part in a
leadership program. The AUSVEG Growing Leaders
Program is designed for people wishing to take up
leadership roles at all levels in the vegetable industry:
workplace, supervisor or industry representation.
"I have always worked closely and networked with all
levels of vegetable producers," Monika said.
"I love it when I can share my organic experience with
other industry members and become very excited when
they use compost, seaweed products or other organic
farming systems. I have also gained valuable skills and
knowledge from the conventional producers on many
aspects of the vegetable industry. "During the leadership
program, I had the privilege of mixing with 15 vegetable
industry representatives, including two young producers
from Virginia. I hope to be able to apply leadership skills
in the organic industry and open up new opportunities for
others in the industry." Monika says for SA to be
successful in growing an organic produce market, it must
operate with the utmost integrity. "This means, operators
should be 100 per cent certified from paddock-to-plate
and adhere to the practices of ensuring full transparency
and traceability so that consumers know what they are
eating, where it's come from and above all, that they can
trust the growers," she said.
- LIZ COTTON
Plentiful fruit, vegetables for 2012 at APM
ADELAIDE Produce Market
welcomed 2012 with an amazing
assortment of Australian-grown
summer fruit available.
In the berry sector, good
supplies of SA-grown
blueberries, blackberries and
raspberries continued to be
The Australian stone fruit season
moved forward with supplies of
yellow and white flesh peaches
and nectarines, several varieties
of plums and Queensland-grown
Kensington Pride and R2E2
mangoes also available.
The Adelaide Hills cherry
season wound down for another
year with Tasmanian-grown
product being sought to support
consumer demand. Australian-
grown dark and light grape
varieties increased in supply as
their season strengthened.
The first arrivals to the market of
new season Royal Gala apples and
Duchess pears, from the
Riverland, appeared last month,
demonstrating the harvesting of
SA-grown new season apples and
pears is on the horizon.
Supplies of Australian-grown
rock melons, honey dew melons,
seedless watermelons and
bananas were also a feature in
the fruit section.
In the citrus area, SA-grown
navel oranges have completed
their season with new season SA-
grown valencias taking their place.
Queensland-grown limes were
in very good supply last month,
with SA grapefruit and lemons
also continuing availability.
In the salad vegetable lines, SA-
grown red and green capsicums,
Lebanese, green and continental
cucumbers, purple eggplant,
gourmet, vine-ripened and truss
tomatoes remained in good supply
last month, unlike SA-grown green
zucchinis, which were in short
supply for a time last month.
Vegetable lines, such as SA-
grown cabbages, iceberg lettuce,
celery, loose cauliflowers,
bukchoy, loose sweetcorn,
pumpkin varieties and
picked green beans were in good
supply last month.
Details: For information on the
movement of fruit and vegetables
or if you wish to subscribe to the
Price Reporting service, contact
Wendy Helps 08 8349 4493, 0419
814 948 or
It s different.
To manage insecticide resistance you need a robust rotation plan that
works every time. DuPont Avatar insecticide works differently to other
insecticides, which means it won t be a weak link in your rotation chain.
So if you want a rotation plan you can crow about, use Avatar.
For more information call 1800 257 169.
Delivering science to horticulture
ALWAYS REFER TO THE PRODUCT LABEL BEFORE USE. 2010 DuPont. The DuPont Oval Logo, DuPont , The miracles of science and Avatar
are trademarks or registered trademarks of DuPont or its affiliates. Du Pont (Australia) Ltd. 7 Eden Park Drive, Macquarie Park NSW 2113.
ACN 000 716 469. Hotline 1800 257 169. All rights reser ved. DP1438/GF&VN
Links Archive Dec 2011-Jan 2012 March 2012 Navigation Previous Page Next Page