We’re back with a plan and a share if you care

Midwinter breaks are good for many reasons – for sleep-ins, you get to work on your own garden, you don’t have to respond to emails or read/watch the news, and you get a break from what can sometimes be a whole lot of overwhelm.

Luckily for us just before we took our break a lot of really interesting things happened.  We got to chat with the Deputy Premier, Jeremy Rockliff about how politically we could position ourselves for more government attention, we spent time with our Patron, NW Tassie champion and all round good guy  and go getter Ben Milbourne who not only filmed an episode of his show Food Lab by Ben Milbourne on site but, we also got some incredibly positive feedback on a couple of products we will be producing for his soon to be open restaurant in Providore Place that is part of the Devonport Living City development. We also spoke in house – the board and volunteers and founder/GM Penelope (me) – about what PttP will look like over the next six months or so.

First exciting cab off the rank is the reintroduction of our home delivery of veggie boxes to elders in our community.

veggie box elders jo and keith.jpg

You may remember we received some funding a while back (now long expended) that saw us deliver 50 + veggie boxes to people in our community who were not only doing it tough, but also had no way of getting to us on The Farm where our food hub is open during the week.  We were over subscribed at the get go and fed a lot of people but it did get a little out of hand in terms of the people we were delivering to.  Its always going to be a bit of a challenge for us and our “ask no questions” policy but this time we are doing things a little differently.

There will be guidelines as to who we can deliver to, and as this is a self/community funded project we are starting with elders only who have no transport who live in the Burnie+Somerset+Wynyard areas.

But there is a but………

This time we are asking you to help us by donating $25 each month for a minimum 12 months.  This money will go towards vehicle costs mostly but also pantry staples to add depth to our boxes.  We think this a great way your office or family or service group, or footy club could make a big difference in the life of some of our most vulnerable elders.

You can head over to our give now page where we have set up a “Produce to the Elders” cause page so you can easily contribute.

$25 elders ad

We know our Produce to the People community is generous to a fault – the more people you share this opportunity with the more elders will receive a box of fresh produce each week.

Click a few buttons and lets make this happen!


PttP hands


Partner in Produce Profile : Lisa Walker-Speers owner of Bruce’s Cafe

Today is the very first profile piece on a Produce to the People Partner in Produce.

There are so many wonderful people in the community who help us and Lisa at Bruce’s Cafe in Wynyard was the first cafe to say a big “yes” as a drop off spot for backyard veggies.

This is a chance for you to find out a little more about the woman behind the cafe…

What made you decide to open a café?

I worked my way through two university degrees and travelled overseas by working in hospitality, its served me well as a casual job secondary to what my main interest was at the time; Performing Arts.  I always had in the back of my mind a little retirement gig of opening a small café beside the sea and it would be all sweet, relaxed and easy, I laugh about that bit now!  When my first child was born and we relocated back to the North West we saw a gap in the market for decent family friendly spaces that didn’t focus solely on the needs of the child.  At Bruce’s you can have a glass of wine AND a babycino.

What is Bruce’s philosophy?

Yummy, rustic food, made with love.  Enjoy what you do.  Do it with passion.

Biggest joy about running Bruce’s?

I find joy in small things at Bruce’s, a cute little cupcake that we all swoon over with pride, a child’s first babycino moustache, the look of awe on people’s faces when they see our beef burger for the first time (its huge!!!), un-solicited compliments in general.  A feeling of achievement, many people talk about the things they want to achieve in life and to actually do one of them is an amazing feeling.

The veggie garden out the back of Bruce’s…what was the inspiration for that?

My father, who has been in business for more than 30yrs told me that when something becomes too comfortable then its time to add a new challenge to the mix.  After two years, the café was travelling smoothly and we wanted to add a deeper element to the things we make and the way we make them.  The philosophy changed to add GROW IT, COOK IT, EAT IT.  We also made 2012 the year to implement more sustainable practices into our business, we are working towards less wastage, more energy conscious decisions to make our business more green, the garden was the first step.

You’ve been a champion of Produce To The People from the start, what is it about PTTP that sparked your interest to be involved?

Each house I have lived in has had a tree growing of some variety, laden with fruit that is never consumed at the same rate that it grows.  PTTP is, in part, about cutting down on that needless waste in our society; which makes sense to me. People are bringing me things at the café all the time, things they have in excess, so it’s lovely for them and for me to be able to pay that generosity forward.  Plus I like Penelope; she is pretty cool and hard to turn down when she asked you to be involved in something.

Favourite thing to eat from your current menu?

I’m a breakfast girl, I prefer dining out in the morning far more enjoyable than any other time, and there is something about starting leisurely, with a feeling that there is a whole day ahead.   So with that in mind I’m a sucker for our breakfast ‘B.R.T’, Fresh garden rocket, which we grow ourselves, confit tomatoes (also home grown) and crispy bacon on sourdough – add a poached egg to sit on top, some of mum’s relish, and a nice pot of English Breakfast tea, delicious.

Describe yourself in three words.


Last supper, who and what?

My husband, my two sisters and Aung san suu kyi– Burma’s, pro-democracy fighter and winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, she is the most inspiring woman, with incredible values, and a quite selfless dignity.   She is one to give anybody perspective and a kick of motivation. I wouldn’t cook, I’d take her out to MeWah in Hobart or Launceston and we would eat Asian inspired food made with love by others and drink glasses of sweet jasmine tea.

What is your super power?

Power-stealing! That sounds so mean doesn’t it.  But if I could learn to harness the energy of the universe without having to burn up my own energy levels, I think could be indestructible.

A sustainable living tip?

Start small; conserve energy. Turn everything non-essential of at the power point. No brainer.   You don’t need your kettle or your washing machine, your microwave, television etc. on stand-by when you’re at work all day, its simply wasted energy and money down the drain.   Its amazing how quickly a habit to switch –of can form, and the power you safe is just a bonus to the security of going to sleep or to work and knowing that all non-essential electrical items in your house are turned off.


Bruce’s can be contacted by phone, email or even viaFacebook. Feel free to give us a call, pop in or even wave or toot your horn as you drive past.

Open 8.30am-4pm Tuesday – Friday,
9am-3pm Saturday and Sunday.

145 Old Bass Highway, Wynyard, Tasmania 7325

(03) 6442 4113

Happy 2012.

I am having such a super fantastic start to the year collecting lots of lovely backyard grown produce and of course mammoth amounts from Harvest Moon…So far broccoli and for the first time beans.  I have never seen so many beans in the one spot at the one time!

Wynyard Commonwealth Bank are leading the pack of veggie drop off spots with a bounty of zucchinis left in their vault.  I love withdrawing veggies from the bank! ( That’s Natrece from the bank in the photo at the top of the page handing over the zuc loot. )

Of course Schools are still on holiday so that has meant bigger bounties for others – Mission Gateway, Vinnies in Somerset, Burnie & Devonport Community Houses and the Burnie and Ulverstone Salvos have had lots of lovely produce, it is always so enthusiastically received. I love delivering veggies!

With the end of the Green Jobs Crew it means solo deliveries at present but I have had some lovely offers of assistance which will be taken up shortly. A big thanks must go to Fiona and Rob who have been looking after the Somerset Primary School Snack Gardens – what a blessing.

When I am not delivering veggies I am furiously writing grant applications – not my most favourite thing but a necessity.

So much to do, so many great ideas,  I can’t wait to get some more $$ in the bank to be able to get everything happening. I would like the success rate of grant applications to equal the abundance of produce grown, gathered and given.

That is one of my 2012 P to the P resolutions.

Back to it!  Cheers for now.