Award for SA biodynamic dairy farmer

Posted by Nicole Eckersley on 15th June 2010

Biodynamic and organic dairy producer Ulli Spranz has been acknowledged for her contribution to South Australian farming and food production at the National Rural Woman of the Year Awards.

Spranz, who founded B.-d Farm Paris Creek at Meadows in the Adelaide Hills with her husband Helmut in 1988, recently received the South Australian award in the program, run by the Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation (RIRDC).

The awards program celebrates rural women and their contribution to primary industries, and its main objective is to help rural women improve their business and leadership skills.

Spranz was one of the founding members of the farmer organisation Biodynamic and Organic Agricultural Bureau, and she chairs Biodynamic Agriculture Australia Ltd.

She said she wanted to use the $10,000 bursary to organise train-the-trainer workshops to stimulate sessions across Australia and promote biodynamic and organic farming principles.

“I will also travel overseas to discuss biodynamic and organic farming development in other countries and find out how we can learn from each other and work together,” Spranz said.

“This industry education and information-sharing has long been a passion of mine. For some years I have been holding monthly meetings with farmers who are interested in biodynamic farming, and we source some of our milk from local dairy farmers who we have helped through the conversion to organic farming.

“Our dream when we came to South Australia was to establish a biodynamic farming project. We wanted to set an example to show that it is possible to produce milk and process it to various products such as cheese, yogurt, fresh milk and butter without the impact on the environment that conventional establishments have. To prove that it is possible and to see the dramatic increase in interest in our products has been very gratifying.”

Spranz said her workshops on biodynamic and organic farming principles could help more food producers care for the environment, make their properties more sustainable and improve the quality and health benefits of their foods.

B.-d Farm Paris Creek sells more than eight million litres of biodynamic dairy products each year and employs more than 50 people. Its product range includes milks, yogurts, quark, cream, butter and soft and hard cheeses, all of which are free from genetic modification, artificial colours and flavours, bleached industrial sugars and salts, thickeners, and only non-homogenised biodynamic/organic milk is used.