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Big benefits in buying local

WA’s major food retailers are all supporters of Buy West Eat Best, stocking produce with the green logo that identifies it is raised or grown locally.

Farmer Jacks has been a member since 2008 “because we are 100 per cent WA-owned and want to support local products to a greater extent,” Fred Fairthorne, Farmer Jacks managing director, said.

Fairthorne said store managers were happy to stock WA-produce requested by customers. In the lead-up to Christmas, he said local seafood and local leg ham would be big sellers.

Farmer Jacks recently committed $100,000 to help the Gascoyne Food Council continue its promotion of the region’s produce.

“Our team loves the fact that we do this and it helps the growers,” Fairthorne said “But most of all it makes them feel appreciated. Customers also appreciate the fact that we are committed in this way.”

James Kelly, owner of IGA stores in Taylor Road, Nedlands, Second Avenue, Mt Lawley, and The Boulevard, City Beach, said WA produce was paramount in stores.

“We are very parochial, we believe we have got to support our local farmers for the survival of the country towns and it all flows back to the city from there,” he said.

Kelly said customers had been known to bring in empty olive oil bottles and packaging from WA products to ask their store to stock it.

“If any WA supplier knocks on our door and the product, is right we give it a go,” he said.

Kelly said Taylor Rd IGA had just partnered with the Southern Forests Food Council for 12 months of tastings and instore promotions.

Coles supports Buy West Eat Best as a means of shining a light on the contribution of WA’s farmers and celebrates suppliers with instore activities and deals on brands including Harvey Beef, peaches, nectarines and apricots from Leotta Nominees in Carmel and avocados from Delroy Orchards in Pemberton.

“We are also proud to partner with Cone Bay Barramundi, Australia’s only ocean-farmed barramundi, to introduce Australian barramundi to Coles.”

Under a unique arrangement, Coles has partnered with local farming families in Kununurra to grow and supply fresh pumpkins, melons and bananas directly to its supermarket there without the need to truck it thousands of kilometres to Perth and back.

Since opening in WA in June 2016, Aldi has been building on existing relationships with local farmers to bring products of the highest quality to customers.

“Customers will find a wide range of locally grown WA produce in store, including beef, tomatoes, mandarins, oranges, mushrooms, apples, cucumber, pumpkin, carrots and much more,” a spokesperson said.

Aldi is is also open to feedback and customer suggestions about local products.

Working with WA farmers helps Woolworths ensure its customers get the freshest produce grown in their own backyard.

A spokesperson said customer favourites include Carnarvon grown bananas, Mt Barker Free Range chicken, sweet corn grown by Jim Trandos and WA ham and deli smallgoods from D’Orsogna.

“We work hard to supply WA-grown fruit, vegetables and seafood for our customers and spring is a great time to … source some homegrown goodness,” the spokesperson said.

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