Jamie is the Operations Manager of the factory and makes the yoghurt every
day from the fresh cow’s milk. He is also the farm ecologist, managing soil and
pasture management in alignment with what is happening with the seasons.
Jamie is a musician in his “spare” time, playing with the family band, The Tee
Bar Jays, and Powerhouse from time to time.
Cathy is involved with the day to day management of the dairy herd and feeding
of calves. She also receives orders from the market and ensures the timely
delivery of fresh products to distributors and stores throughout New Zealand.
Compliance requirements are also managed by Cathy.
Julie is Cathy’s sister and is the office Manager. She is involved also with
Compliance and the day-to-day financial management.
Bill turns his hand to everything from fixing fences, water troughs, calving cows,
packing yoghurt and stacking pallets.
Our children, James, Mara, Alice and Eru, who all have continuing involvement with the various aspects of the business.
Garett helps with the milking of the dairy herd and stock movements etc. We also
often have several students working on the farm to enhance their
education; whether it be vet studies or work experience for secondary
Andrea is our Factory Supervisor who trains new team members, manages the cleaning programme and maintains records for the factory compliance requirements.
We have an awesome group of people who pack the yoghurt. Chris, Val, Erik, Felicity and many other casual students who come on board from time to time.
Compliance forms a substantial cost to our business, but is necessary both as a regulation and to ensure that you, the customer, has full traceability and authenticity of Biofarm’s products. Compliance means that we have systems and milestones to meet that keep us conscious of the risks associated with supplying safe pure food to healthy New Zealanders.
Biofarm was first certified in 1986 by BioGro New Zealand. We were one of the first farms certified organic in New Zealand and we continued to be BioGro certified for around 15 years. When AsureQuality (then AgriQuality) offered independent organic verification, we trialled them for 2 years, running a dual certification. We have continued to use AsureQuality as our IVA (Independent Verification Agency), as they also provide the MPI required auditing of our farm dairy, and our processing factory.
Our AsureQuality registration number is 0265/01 for the operations associated with: Dairy Farm, sheep and goat production, and registration number 0265/02 for the operations associated with the processing of milk, cream and yoghurt.
Our organic auditor will want to see our records for all stock movements on and off the farm, all inputs to our farming and processing operations and organic certificates for these inputs (eg. honey for the yoghurt , minerals for the cows, fertiliser, seeds etc), all machinery coming on to the farm (eg. silage contractors) and certificates to show this machinery was cleaned prior to coming to us. Our organic audit gives you the assurance that we are what we say we are, “A sustainable and diverse organic farm, producing pure organic food”.
Biofarm is the recipient of the prestigious Hua Parakore label. Hua Parakore is a growing system that ensures the food grown is of the highest purity according to Maori customs and practice.
Indigenous systems of food production are becoming recognised internationally for their sustainability. Hua Parakore responds to this emerging market for culturally and environmentally resonsible food and medicine.
If you would like to see a copy of our current certificate, please let us know and we can either fax you a copy or post one to you.
Risk Management Programme:
Our farm and factory are audited annually by the New Zealand Food Safety Authority’s Approved Independent auditing agency, AsureQuality. Our approved Risk Management Programme (RMP) #052 is evaluated and verified annually to prove that we are supplying a safe product to the market.
Our RMP describes all procedures we follow in the production from paddock to plate, from farm to fork or from Biofarm to your breakfast bowl, whichever is appropriate for you. Our RMP describes practices to ensure animal welfare, that the milk is pasteurised prior to packing (for milk) and prior to the addition of live yoghurt cutures for the yoghurt, and that the laboratory testing of the packaged products and the environment (including water) are performed routinely to ensure safe food and working conditions.
Farm Dairy (The Cowshed)
We are also required to have an annual audit of our cowshed. A representative from AsureQuality inspects inside all the pipe work and the surrounds of the cowshed to ensure that no contamination of the raw milk is possible. We submit our raw milk for testing as is required by NZFSA.
Regional Council Consents to discharge waste water from the farm factory, and a Consent to discharge cowshed effluent:
These are two separate consents that have been granted. The waste water from the factory is sprayed onto several paddocks surrounding the factory, and this water is tested 6 monthly to ensure no damage is being done to the environment.
Cow shed effluent is kept to a minimum and is discharged through a sump which catches all the solids, and the liquid meanders its way down a long ditch to a wetland area. We want the cows to deposit their dung directly on to the paddocks, so we do not use motor bikes, dogs or electric backing gates in the yard which would frighten the cows and make them “deposit” in the yard. We have 100 milking cows to deposit over 500 acres, so there is lots of soil area for them to fertilise. Each cow pat on the paddock eventually turns into a small compost heap, thanks to the active soil biology.
We are resurrecting a natural wetland area on the farm with native trees, flax and toitoi bushes, which is attracting increasing numbers of native birds. We plant 100 trees per year around the farm which provides wonderful habitat for wild life and ensures shelter and forage for the livestock living on the farm.