Costa Wins Sustainability Award

Rob King, Regional Manager Costa Berry farm receives the award from Mr Kellon Beard, Regional Manager Mid North Coast Business NSW.

 

IN a win for the berry industry, Costa’s Berry farm in Corindi has won the 2021 Excellence in Sustainability Award in the Mid North Coast NSW Business Awards.

The awards recognise growth, entrepreneurship and celebrate business success from Woolgoolga in the north to Forster Tuncurry in the south.

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The Excellence in Sustainability Award recognises a business that has demonstrated its commitment to sustainable business practices and is working to reduce the impact of its operations on the environment.

Rob King, Costa’s Regional Manager for Corindi, welcomed the recognition for work across the farm, particularly in the areas of biodiversity, reducing water use and reducing waste.

“We have a highly committed team who have put in place a range of initiatives across our farm,” Mr King said.

“That has included everything from using beneficial insects to reduce chemical use, to state-of-the-art weigh scale sensors to reduce water and fertiliser use,” Mr King added.

The farm has also worked towards reducing its waste.

The majority of the farm’s agricultural plastics, including tunnel plastic, have been recycled through local firm Coffs Paper and Oil and turned into different products including park seats and building films and bollards.

Mr King said all scrap metal was collected and recycled through local businesses and more than 90 percent of the cardboard and paper waste from packaging is recycled.

“Our sustainability projects are led by a Sustainability Team, a group of passionate staff members who meet monthly to identify and implement projects to address sustainability in key issues.

“This has led to a range of on-site activities including a tree planting program to enhance biodiversity on the farm,” he said.

The Corindi farm has also been actively working with PolyGro (an agricultural product provider) to scope the establishment of Horticycle, a pilot plastic stewardship program in the North Coast region.

This program seeks to improve the recycling of agricultural plastics by integrating existing recycling businesses (such as Coffs Harbour Paper and Oil) and develop new business along all points of the recycling chain to remove plastic waste from landfill.

The Costa Berry farm located at Range Road, Corindi is considered to be at the forefront of genetic and growing innovation for berries.

They are the only Australian berry grower to achieve year-round production of blueberries and raspberries and their Corindi farm covers 340 planted hectares.

Now they will go on to compete as finalists in the State Business Awards to be held in November.

 

By Sandra MOON

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