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Wodonga Park Fruit and Nuts [Supplier Spotlight]

June 6, 2024 Team Goodness

A switch to biodynamic farming of Macadamia Nuts, has not only created an incredibly tasty nut, but a sustainable farm that works on low-emission agriculture.

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In 1987, Marco Bobbert’s parents set out on a venture to establish a Macadamia farm in the Blackbutt plateau of Queensland, a region perfect for growing quality produce.

“Macadamia growing was still quite new at the time and still very basic in terms of the processing of the nuts” says Marco. “But Dad fell in love with the plants and the rich soil it was grown in, so he converted the farm to become biodynamic, bought another three blocks of adjoining land, planted more Macadamias and the rest is history.”

Today Wodonga Park Fruit & Nuts is a leading producer and exporter of Macadamias. Spread across 52 hectares and boasting over 7,700 Macadamia trees, the nuts are grown biodynamically to ensure sustainable farming practices to produce quality organic foods that nourish the body and the planet. 


RESIDUE FREE

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Biodynamic farming is a holistic approach to farming, where farmers work with the natural eco systems. Annual residue testing programs check the macadamias remain chemical and residue free, and the processing of the nuts ensures maximum recycling of the raw materials. For example, the the outer shell of the nut is recycled and used in landscaping and the husks are composted and applied to the soil as organic matter, helping the soil retain a higher carbon content. In the 30+ years of farming, the farm soil has captured tonnes of carbon each year and “grown” over 30cm of new top soil


HOLISTIC PEST MANAGEMENT

The team ensures a holistic approach to insect management. Beginning with healthy foundations of good soil and being surrounded by state forests creates the ideal situation to minimise pest imbalances. Being grown at a higher altitude and slightly cooler temperatures than other Macadamia farms in Australia, the shells are naturally thicker, which minimises any insect damage. To further develop a healthy symbiotic ecosystem, Wodonga Park releases beneficial insects to the farm, and uses natural extracts such as garlic, as required.

Using a circular economy approach, local by-product from rock quarries is upcycled into natural soil improvers. Together with composted chicken manure, Wodonga Park has found a sustainable way to ensure long-term soil nutrition, balancing these elements with other natural inputs such as kelp, as required.

As for the organic nuts themselves, they are dried, sorted and vacuum packed ready for Honest to Goodness customers to enjoy a superior tasting, buttery macadamia.

“I love the fact that biodynamic farming is so clean. We work with nature and the energy from the land. Our Macadamias are wholesome and nutritious and the whole family is involved in a unique type of agriculture,” says Marco, whose go-to recipe is adding chips of macadamia throughout a salad for a “crunchy, creamy salad.”


WHAT IS SO SPECIAL ABOUT MACADAMIA NUTS?

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Aside from tasting incredible, these creamy nuts contain a range of health-giving properties:

Good fats: The macadamia contains Omega 7, a mono-unsaturated fatty acid, which helps maintain good cholesterol levels

Heart Healthy: They contain quality unsaturated fats, which are ideal when seeking hunger-busting snacks.

Digestive health: Macadamia kernels are an easy solution to boosting your digestive health and keeping you regular, with about 2g of fibre per 30g serving.

Vitamins and minerals: The nuts contain a wide range of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, such as vitamin A, iron, B vitamins, manganese and folate, which provide essential nutrients for overall health.


DID YOU KNOW?

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Macadamia nuts are known as Queensland nuts, bush nuts, maroochi nuts, bauple nuts, and Hawaii nuts. They are native to Australia and were named after a Scottish-born Australian chemist who advocated for their cultivation. They are now grown in tropical regions all over the world and are popular as a sweet and savoury ingredient as well as a healthy snack. Healthy macadamias can last two generations. From the time a macadamia tree flowers in August/September, it can take 12 months or more to grow and be ready for harvesting before reaching your table.


HOW TO ENJOY MACADAMIAS

Raw: Macadamia nuts can be eaten raw, straight out of the shell or bag. They have a creamy, buttery texture and a rich, nutty flavour.

Roasted: Roasting macadamia nuts brings out their flavour and crisps them up. Preheat the oven to 175 degrees Celsius before roasting. Roast the nuts on a baking sheet for 8-10 minutes, or until golden brown.

Chopped: Macadamia nuts can be chopped and added to a variety of dishes. They go well in salads, pastas, and stir-fries. They can also be added to baked goods such as cakes, cookies, and breads.

Ground: Macadamia nuts can be ground into a fine flour and used in baking as a gluten-free substitute for wheat flour. They can also be used to coat meat, fish, and vegetables.

Nut Butter: Macadamia nuts can also be made into a creamy, delicious butter by blending them until smooth. It can be spread on toast, added to smoothies and use as a dip for crackers and fruits.


COOK WITH MACADAMIA NUTS

Slow Cooker Honey and Macadamia Granola

Slow Cooker Honey and Macadamia Granola

This yummy homemade granola recipe contains wholesome ingredients for the most perfect start to the day or a crunchy snack!

Organic Recipes  Finger Lime, Macadamia Coconut Crusted Salmon Finger Lime, Macadamia Coconut Crusted Salmon

Finger Lime, Macadamia Coconut Crusted Salmon

Spice up your salmon dish by adding this Macadamia, Coconut & Finger Lime crust!


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