As CEO of the food rescue organisation SecondBite, I realised that there was one very important group of people that needed additional help - Australian Farmers. I would often hear about farmers that simply could not afford to donate their produce because they were in dire circumstances themselves. Farmers who were quite literally ripping up their trees or ploughing their crops back into the ground and walking off their land. I started to dig deeper…it wasn’t long before I realised that farmers are being forced to leave their land in droves - over 300 every month and sadly our farmers are two and a half times more likely to commit suicide than any other profession. Add to that the fact that 23 percent of our farmers work full time after 65 compared with 3 percent of the rest of us and I realised something had to be done. So the timing was perfect - SecondBite was all grown up and the seed had been planted for a new venture to nurture and grow! Spade & Barrow brings together the things I love most – food & people & good old fashioned common sense. At Spade & Barrow we LOVE fruit & vegetables ALL fruit & vegetables – big, small, curly, wonky and straight. And we really care about the farmers - and we are committed to helping our farmers, stay on their land. The team at Spade & Barrow believe in a fair and equitable food system, one where farmers receive a fair price for their fabulous produce and our customers are given the opportunity to purchase this produce, super fresh, direct from the farms, delivered to their door at great prices – in fact our customers have told us they are saving up to forty percent on their fresh produce bill since they switched to Spade & Barrow as their supplier!
SO HOW DOES IT WORK?
Well at Spade & Barrow we view food that is deemed by major retailers as aesthetically imperfect not as cause for despair, but as a beautiful, valuable, front & centre star which we have renamed Natures Grade produce because it is food as nature intended, after all not every carrot can be a supermodel!
We advocate for a direct plough approach where farmers are able to harvest their entire crop irrespective of size and shape - which is great news for the environment and our farmer’s and customers pockets! This produce is then brought to our warehouse and sorted so that you, our customers, are given the opportunity to choose what type of produce you would like. If you would like to purchase a big bag of mixed size onions at a significant discount of up to 20 percent off the price of uniform sized onions – you can!
Spade & Barrow takes two indigestible problems – an exodus of small farmers from the land and food going unnecessarily to waste and combines them all into one delicious, digestible solution – Australia’s first social wholesale food business.
We deliver a top quality wholesale service across Geelong and Melbourne so call us today for our price list – we guarantee you won’t be disappointed!
Thank you. Together we can create a fairer food system.
is our CEO at Spade & Barrow. Katherine is a passionate foodie, cook, wine lover and entrepreneur. She has worked in the food sector for more than 15 years and has a tremendous range of experience and success - starting and growing a national food franchise, as well as consulting and general management in the hospitality industry. She has firsthand experience at the opposite end of the cycle of waste and is an advocate for knowing where and how your produce is grown. LinkedIn
KATY is our founding CEO and Brand Ambassador. She loves mixing food and business and has made a career out of making the food system fairer. Katy led food rescue organisation SecondBite as CEO from 2006 to 2012. Starting with a car boot full of fresh fruit and veg, Katy led the organisation through a period of intense growth and expansion from Victoria to efforts nationally - distributing over six million kilos of fresh food to over 800 community organisations. Katy has a passion for people, which includes family (she has two beautiful boys), communities, and keeping Australian farmers on their land. LinkedIn
CLIONA manages Customer Experience, ensuring that each and every customer is happy with the quality and service we provide on a daily basis. Clíona is originally from Ireland, but after finishing her studies in Scotland in 2012 she embarked on her journey to Australia. She joined the Spade & Barrow team after gaining valuable experience at Aussie Farmer’s Direct, where she worked for over a year, and found her passion for working towards a sustainable food industry. LinkedIn