Introducing Tim and Katrina Myers from Barham in Southern NSW. Their story is number 36 in my quest to feature 52 farmers in 52 weeks to celebrate the Australian Year of the Farmer.
Summary of our enterprise
Tim and Katrina took over the family farm Horseshoe Bend, just outside the southern New South Wales town of Barham at the end of 2010 from Katrina’s mother Debbie.
The farm covers a total of 2500 acres. Katrina and Tim manage the 80 acre sandhill and grow avocados, while approx. 400 acres is share farmed and cropped and the remainder is flood country.
The farm has been in Katrina’s family since 1975 and has produced many things over the years including, beef, lucerne, sheep, pumpkins and watermelons. The main focus now is on avocado production.
The property is bordered by the Barbers Creek, a tributary of the Murray River and is an irrigation property.
Best lifestyle factor in farming?
We decided to go farming at the end of 2010 because we wanted to be able to spend more time with our kids and we both love the outdoors. For us the best lifestyle factors are running our own business and the fact that it allows us to have quality family time every day.
What do you foresee as the biggest challenge short and long term?
I think that both short and long term the biggest challenges facing farms are Government policies in relation to food security and our national food plan. This excellent article by Nick Rose describes it very well : http://australian.foodsovereigntyalliance.org/blog/2010/08/16/food-sovereignty-australia/.
If the government do not act to change policy so that it is not corporate giants and the supermarket duopolies that are favored then small family farms like ours will be non-existent in the not too distant future.
What do you wish non-farmers / the government understood about farming ?
I wish that governments and non – farmers would understand how much farmers love their farms and how well they look after them. We are the caretakers of our land and it is part of our soul. I believe farmers are far better to take care of the land than any government.
What message would you put on on a bill board in Collins Street?
Real food needs real farmers
Barham Avacados contact details: