The Farm Shop tells its tale

Colin, Gemma and Tanya, a few days before opening.

Good, fresh, honest, local food – that’s what The Farm Shop is all about, the four owners told the Waikato Times recently.

The idea for the Shop came from Tanya Clancy – who was getting a little fed up after three years of supplying eggs and chutneys to various markets.

It could be frustrating waiting for the local market to roll around and constant travel as well as unpredictable weather could be wearying, she told ,journalist Kashka Tunstall.

The Shop sidesteps the conventional market model allowing growers and manufacturers to sell to the public daily, and under cover. (The Shop is open Wednesday to Sunday currently.)

Tanya Clancy and Kevin Clarke, from Taupiri, and Gordonton couple Gemma McGarry and Colin Oliver invested $20,000 into the shop set-up.

She had seen the concept in England years ago, and thought it worth trying. Then in January, the couple came across a vacant space in the Gordonton Village.

It was, she said, an empty space – no walls, doors, stairs but this was all remedied (with hard work) and the Shop opened in May.

They believe it is the first of its kind in New Zealand.

Small, local growers and producers come in, rent a space – maybe for a week if they’ve got excess produce, or a month with shelf stable products – set their own prices and get 100 per cent of the profits.

It’s not a retail shop, Clancy and McGarry stress, and the growers and producers are partners, not suppliers.

“We not purchasing the product, we’re not owning it and putting a mark-up on it,” Clancy says.

Everything is local. Garlic comes from the road behind, the pumpkins come from two doors up, fruit is dropped off on the doorstep by more locals and the daffodils are cut a kilometre away and delivered.

Sarah Thompson, with daughter Rosie, was the first official customer at 5 minutes past 12, stocking up on fresh bread and juice -
Sarah Thompson, with daughter Rosie, was the first official customer at 5 minutes past 12, stocking up on fresh bread and juice –

And they are keen to help similar operations start-up around the country, supplied by local growers and manufacturers.

  • Number 8 Network was at the opening of The Farm Shop, click here for the story and pics.
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Number 8 Network - a community website for the rural areas northeast of Hamilton, NZ, is run by Gordonton journalist/editor Annette Taylor.

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