Danny’s Farm Food Trailer
The story of the project
I started farming in 2013 with two goals. The first is to be able to make a burger where everything in that burger is grown on the farm, and the second longer-term one is to open a small restaurant on the farm which serves meals made from ingredients grown on the farm, and with other locally sourced produce. Fast forward two years and I’m getting closer and closer to making both dreams come true, whilst along the way sampling some truly delicious farm sourced meals (all in the name of research!). These meals and the produce that inspired them made me want to start selling food at markets so I could share with a wider community the delicious fresh taste of sustainably grown and ethically raised food. Almost a year ago I did my first market in nearby Daylesford selling our made-from-scratch free range egg and chorizo wraps using our eggs, herbs, tomatoes and rocket and our neighbours Jonai Farms’ uncommonly delicious free-range chorizo.
Following the advice of ethical farming pioneer & personal hero Joel Salatin (“produce something you like to eat so that if you don’t sell out you can always eat your inventory!”) we continued experimenting until we arrived at our current offerings of Portuguese custard tarts, and seasonal fruit & berry friands (currently blueberry and white chocolate), which are both made with our free range eggs. By value adding our produce we’ve been able to keep the farm profitable without sacrificing our ethics in terms of how our food is grown and raised.
This year we’ve attended 3 local and regional markets a week (in Ballarat, Daylesford and at Melbourne Uni) with our most recent seasonal offering being local free-range pulled pork sliders, made from local ethically raised pork which we slow-cook for 12 hours, alongside our homemade coleslaw and apple sauce, mayonnaise, BBQ sauce and hot sauce.
After years of shipping ponies to and from pony clubs the trusty old horse float has been enjoying its well earned retirement in the back paddock, but we want to dust it off and give it a new lease of life as a food trailer.
I didn’t want to start entirely from scratch. I believe in re-purposing things rather than buying new and the horse float has great character and will remind people that the food they’re eating came from a farm. This may sound obvious but I think it can be often overlooked and forgotten and I want to reconnect people to the farms and farmers who produce their food.
The food trailer will expand our reach beyond markets allowing us to share our ethical and sustainable farming message with a much wider community. It will also allow us to serve a fresher product (the Portuguese tarts straight from the oven are to die for!) and produce a much higher volume of food, which enables us to further support our local farmers. By giving us a mobile kitchen it will also enable us to respond with greater flexibility when faced with farming challenges and help make the farm more financially sustainable.
As you can see from our video so far we’ve stripped out the old iron paneling on the sides, pulled out the old floor boards and we’re currently grinding away the rust and reinforcing the frame (though the video does not truly reflect the weeks of work to get it to this point!).
WHAT WE NEED YOUR HELP WITH NEXT!
Once this is done and we’ve got a solid frame to work with we’re going to replace the springs, hubs, tyres and brakes. Then we’ll pop in a couple of ovens, sinks, a fridge and everything we need to be able to cook our delicious produce on-site and serve it straight to you. And that’s where we could use a little help:
How the funds will be used
$500 Gas fitting
$1,000 Springs, brakes, bearings, tyres
$500 Steel, welding rods, grinding disks, paint
$15 Disco glitter ball (essential)
No doubt fitting out the float will also bring its own set of challenges and problems but with the advice and help from friends, neighbours and the retired tradesmen at the Daylesford Men’s Shed I’m confident we’ll be able to overcome them.
The main challenge for our project however will be raising the funds. Your pledges mean everything because if we don’t reach our target by the end date then we don’t receive any money at all. No money will be transferred until we reach the full amount needed to complete the project. With your pledges and by sharing the project with friends and your community we can build an awesome food trailer together!
If you could share the project and story with your networks that would be hugely appreciated, our website is: www.dannysfarm.com.au, Facebook: www.facebook.com/dannysfarmblampied and Instagram