November 11, 2014

Swallow Rock Reach, on the banks of the Hawkesbury River near Windsor, is the home of Melanda Park free range and Swallow Rock Organics produce. It’s a place where people, animals and plants live and work together to produce clean food in a cycle of life that leaves nothing to waste.

The 46-hectare property is managed by Matt and Sue Simmons, and has been owned and farmed by Sue’s family for around 100 years. As with many other local properties, it was once a thriving citrus farm but, when cheap overseas imports escalated in the 1980s, Sue’s parents – Ray and Barbara Stone– pulled out their 1,000-plus orange trees to cultivate pumpkins and watermelons.

When Matt, originally a cattle farmer, joined the family, he introduced a few pigs to help clear the potato paddocks after harvest. Now the pigs are the main event, but still part of an integrated, rotational approach. They live year-round in differently constituted paddocks depending on their age, sex and pregnancy state, and are in high demand in some of Sydney’s finest restaurants.

If you fancy a whole spit pig at your next event, or just want to know where you can find some of their delicious pork, head to their website.

Don’t forget to check out our previous posts where we uncover other local produce such as Julie’s kitchen in SpringThe sharpest butcher in town and Willowbrae Chevre cheese.

Expect more at Vermont

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