Local farmers and gardeners are asked to consider growing fruits and vegetables for direct supply to Bingara IGA.
Owner John Bishton held a meeting at The Imperial last Tuesday to gauge interest.
“It is something that could work well for everyone, the growers, the customers and for us,” Mr Bishton said.
“The more we can reduce the food miles on our produce the better. We have had some produce provided locally previously and we are looking to extend on that, particularly now coming into spring.
“We have information packs available, covering a rough pricing format and general rules. We can discuss issues such as following withholding periods and delivery protocol and I would encourage hobby farmers and gardeners to consider looking into it.
“It is not about cutting anybody out but a collaborative effort and having a plan we can work through together.”
Mr Bishton said while the meeting had been a little disappointing with only five people attending, there were still a few leads and contacts to follow up.
Mt Bishton said there is typically a strong demand for big ticket items such as tomatoes, lettuce, carrots and zucchini.
“There are particular techniques involved but it is my understanding that most things can be grown here successfully and at not a huge expense. So many major suppliers try to have an extensive range available year round but that actually has a huge impact on the environment and on its actual quality.
“When something is in season it is usually good and it is usually cheap and it is even better when it is produced locally. There are people out there who really know what they are doing when it comes to growing fruit and vegetables, so if you think it might be something you could be interested in don’t be afraid to have a go.
“If it goes well there would be no reason why people couldn’t start supplying to other nearby towns as well.”
The Bingara IGA has a strong environmental ethos. In addition to its no plastic bags policy, a 50 kilowatt Photovoltaic has just been installed. It consists of 165 solar panels, producing $50 a day in electricity savings.
It has also been nominated for a NSW Business Chamber Sustainability award. The winner will be announced late September in Narrabri.
“It would be great for the IGA to be known as the most environmental supermarket,” Mr Bishton said.