The Oyster farm
We purchased the oyster farm in April 2008 with no previous farming experience seeing an opportunity for our business background, marketing, administrative and quality management skills to turn the farm into a financially sustainable business. And so, the Kangaroo Island Shellfish story began.
It was a steep learning curve and not without the obligatory farming disaster to set us back. From storms, to Government regulation nightmares, blood, sweat and tears, threats of disease, seed shortages and a devastated industry. Kangaroo Island is a volatile place to farm and run a business, however because of the isolation of doing business on an island you are forced to develop innovative methods and equipment using what you have at hand. We are always learning and improving the way we farm and striving for efficiencies.
We embraced both horizontal and vertical diversification with the introduction of Spawnless Oysters and the Native Angasi Oyster into the farm. We opened an exclusive farmgate, The Oyster Farm Shop, to sell direct to the public.
The oysters are branded as Kangaroo Island oysters, which are recognised Australia wide, and over the years we have been proudly supplying our wholesale customers based in Queensland, Sydney and Melbourne. We also supply to local restaurants and caterers who choose to use a local oyster on their menu and of course to our farmgate.
The farm uses two different farming techniques; Intertidal (similar to that used on Eyre Peninsula) and Subtidal (similar to that used in Tasmania). The farm was set up this way as our tides are high in winter, so we use the subtidal stock more in winter as we can’t access the intertidal at that time of year. Our products are; Coastal Creams (intertidal) and Deep Water Premiums (subtidal) and Kangaroo Island Natives (Angasi).
It has been quite an adventure, but we love the feel of that first wave as it breaks over the bow of the boat and slaps us in the face – it makes you remember you are alive!