Kalfresh Vegetables is a business that has good farming techniques at its core.
It’s a business run by farmers, with a constant focus on the needs of our customers. The owners control all decisions, from seed selection, through to harvest, packing and distribution.
We’re passionate about creating the freshest, tastiest, nutrient-rich produce possible. Our farming philosophy is driven by the belief that a happy plant is a healthy plant.
Over the years we’ve honed our farming system to ensure it is environmentally sustainable and that our soil health is excellent.
Our sustainable farming system ensures the health and viability of our soil and of our crops.
We follow a one in four-year crop rotation of symbiotic and forage crops, to replenish nutrients in the soil.
Composting is a key part of our program to improve soil structure and improve overall soil sustainability. Our compost is made on farm using natural products to produce organic carbon which is used as a food source for microbes in the soil.
TASTE & FRESHNESS
People often comment that our vegetables are sweet and tasty and last longer. These qualities are the result of the farming methods which we’ve refined over the years to ensure our customers can taste the Kalfresh difference.
Precision farming allows us to minimise destruction and compaction of soil.
We adopt a controlled traffic system on farm, using GPS technology which outlines permanent roadways and growing areas. We don’t drive tractors on the dedicated growing areas.
With precision agriculture, farmers and soils work smarter, not harder. We use research about weather patterns, soil temperature and humidity to inform our actions.
INTEGRATED PEST MANAGEMENT
Kalfresh growers use a Bugs for Bugs Integrated Pest Management (IPM) system which uses ‘beneficial’ insects to control pests which are harmful to crops.
We take biodiversity to the next level by increasing the natural flora & fauna on farm and by increasing the micro-organisms in the soil.
Between May and December Kalfresh, through our joint venture partners Jamie and Melita Jurgens of Vee Jays Kalfresh, offers customers a range of high-quality, Certified Organic produce.
The Certified Organic vegetables, marketed under our The Passionate Farmer brand, are grown by the Jurgens on farms in Bowen, North Queensland.
Contact our Sales Manager Martin Beattie to discuss your Organic Produce needs.
PADDOCK to PLATE
Because we’re a fully-integrated farming company we can supply produce to customers faster, which means our vegetables stay fresher for longer.
Healthy Soil = Healthy Plants = Healthy People
Kalfresh’s Rob Hinrichsen is our resident soil guru.
In recent years he has been working on building soil wealth to protect crops, build productivity and sustainability.
Rob and the Kalfresh growers have adopted a number of industry-leading initiatives, including a sophisticated composting program, controlled traffic farming and cover cropping.
Rob says healthy soil has a positive impact on all aspects of cropping.
“The accumulation of carbon in soil is the best measure of soil health,” Rob explains.
“Carbon is removed from the atmosphere by plants and after decomposition is held in the structure of our soil. Keeping it there is the great challenge of modern farming.”
Increased soil carbon means great water efficiency. For every one per cent of soil carbon we build, our soil can hold an extra 150,000litres of water/ha.
Soil health strategies implemented by Kalfresh include:
Making Compost: We recycle waste organics back to the farm to reclaim nutrients and boost carbon. This project also fulfils a broader company strategy to reduce food waste and increase our recycling efforts.
Controlled Traffic Farming: Our tractors are controlled by GPS which means we don’t drive machinery where we grow crops. This reduces compaction and leaves our soil open and oxygenated
Cover Cropping: We grow sacrificial crops between our vegetable crops to build soil carbon and soil microbiology
Introducing Biologicals: Biologicals are the living microbes we introduce to help the plants defend themselves. It’s a chemical-free way to control pests and disease.
Integrated Pest Management (IPM): Our IPM strategy is focused on building beneficial insects to control pest insects