Enterprise name  Grow Lightly

In 2004 it all started with surplus fruit and vegies from two gardens and a couple of weekly vegie boxes, with money in a biscuit tin. Numbers of growers and customers grew, and we moved our Sunday morning packing from a farm shed to a shop and then down into Coal Creek. All this with no formal structure, but some very clear principles.

Grow Lightly grew from a concern about global environmental trends, particularly global warming and peak oil, and the prospect of ongoing water shortages. People must eat, but we believe it’s important to make truly fresh food available, to reduce food miles to an absolute minimum, and to recognize the environmental cost of food production. We also believe that it’s important for kids to understand where food comes from, and to grow up as part of a food culture other than the culture of fast food. It wasn’t until 2013 that we became incorporated. We’re now a not-for-profit company, with a Board of Directors and a constitution.

Our official objectives are introduced like this: Grow Lightly Connect has a commitment to sustainable use of resources and the building of a resilient local community. In particular, GLC seeks to encourage local food production and distribution using organic methods and sustainable agricultural techniques –in other words, to help South Gippsland feed South Gippsland. This is what we continue to be about. In 2016 we moved into what is now the Grow Lightly Food Hub next to Coal Creek, Korumburra and were able to start doing lots of different things to advance our objectives. We opened a shop (initially two and then three days a week), and began to run workshops, film showings and other community activities as well as continuing with our vegiebags. We employed our first paid staff. In 2018 we introduced a system of on-line bulk ordering.

Absolutely none of this would have been possible without an immense amount of voluntary work by a very large number of people. The amount of fresh produce we turned over continued to grow astronomically and our beautiful but small building with its teeny coolroom built into an unused toilet space almost burst at the seams. So in October 2018 we moved all our fresh produce operations to our present building in Commercial Street Korumburra That freed up the Food Hub for more and better community activities.

Grow Lightly, work harder, do more.