Grower, Bulmers Farm Fresh Vegetables, LINDENOW VIC
CATEGORY: COMMUNITY AND PEOPLE
A highly intensive farm business needs not only a large task force, but also a determined team leader. Andrew Bulmer heads up a massive salad leaf, baby spinach, lettuce and baby broccoli farm in East Gippsland, Victoria and takes the role as leader of that team very seriously.
For Andrew, one of the biggest challenges to supplying up to 100,000 bunches of baby broccoli, amongst a host of other crops, is labour.
Not only is it sourcing the actual people, but it is also ensuring they are paid fairly and trained to carry out the job competently and safely. Bulmer Farms actively promotes career pathways within horticulture, employing many local people within the business as well as a employing a team of 70 people from Timor-Leste.
Andrew also has his eyes on the future and has committed to an apprenticeship program. He is one of the few production horticulture businesses that has made this commitment and now has three apprentices in production horticulture, one in warehousing and has plans for a diesel mechanic apprentice next year.
He is not only an advocate for his employees, he also plays a role in the broader agricultural industry as a board member of Agribusiness Gippsland and the East Gippsland Food Cluster. Andrew is also justifiably proud of being one of the founders of the East Gippsland Vegetable Innovation Days, an event designed to bring the best new seed varieties, innovation and world’s best practice to growers, as well as to showcase the excellence of the region’s produce.
Andrew is a finalist in the Community and People category of the Growth Awards.