In South Australia they are pioneering a change in farming. Using the natural resources Australia has in abundance, i.e. sea water and the sun, they are growing 15% of Australia’s annual tomato production and over 15,000 tonnes of tomatoes.
Sundrop are reimagining farming so that nature is a partner, not a supplier, and as a result have created a pretty sizeable business with sustainability at the forefront of what they do.
What have they done?
Sundrop have built a farm on arid land near Port August in SA on a 20 hectare block. They have built a closed-loop system irrigating sea water, using solar panels to create fresh water – they have a solar tower that is 115m high and has 23,000 mirrors pointed at it. They have no reliance on soil using hydroponic greenhouses and us coconut husks, not soil.
There is no use of fossil fuels and they don’t use genetically modified seeds. They use seawater as a natural pesticide and harvest and weed by hand. The farm has created over 200 jobs locally.
Why have they done it?
By 2050 there is forecast to be a 50% increase in food demand; we simply cannot continue with current practices so Sundrop are changing it up and showing how farming can look. They believe in a triple bottom line being focused on People, the Planet and Profits.
There is every chance if you’ve eaten a tomato it has come from sundrop