If you consider yourself multipassionate, someone who entertains a vast array of interests (while regularly feeling overwhelmed), then we have the role model for you!
Fiona Weir Walmsley of Buena Vista Farm in Gerringong, NSW, has walked a quirky and colourful path, embodying the diversity and adaptability we so desperately need for a resilient future.
From running a medieval catering company to earning her marketing stripes, living ‘from scratch’ and leading women in local food, keeping bees, tending goats and, gosh, writing a book while she’s at it… Fiona is our kind of renaissance farmer!
Hear how Fiona and her family have created a super diverse existence on 18 acres (think goats, chooks, cows, veggies, cheese, cut flowers + cooking school) -- and enjoyed the kind of riches money will never buy.
- She is writing a book! Cooking food from scratch.
- Her “from scratch” life.
- A background in commercial cookery, medieval history and marketing.
- Why she locked the front door for this interview…
- Buena Vista biscuits built a local presence
- Transitioning back to her family farm
- Farming succession planning: five generations of dairy farmers
- Discovering Joel Salatin
- Building a commercial kitchen to kick off cash flow
- “We swore to ourselves we would never take being given a farm for granted.”
- Diversifying to be financially viable: bees, chickens, goats, market gardening, cooking school, book writing.
- “Sometimes our heads feel like they're going to fall off and my brains will come out of my ears.”
- Creating a community of WWOOFers and watching them go on to do incredible things.
- Getting practical with support from online apps to stay on top of everything.
- Transitioning her market garden to cut flowers.
- Ebbing and flowing the various business arms depending on who has the energy, what season it is, what the greater market forces are doing.
- Her ‘farm native’ babies
- Getting a local, weekly farmers market off the ground.
- “When farmers markets are weekly, it changes peoples food buying habits.”
- Actively participating in a female led, food-centric community.
- Is her life photoshopped? How real is the grid?
- The pain in the arse truth about sourdough.
- Finding solidarity with others who have a collaborative vision.
- Helping younger people get a leg up into regen ag.
- Sourdough was the first “SLOW FOOD”.
- Living this way is never going to make sense financially; you have to uncouple your thinking from capitalism ways and instead see the rewards as non-fiscal.
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