WillowZen is a family business that started in 2009. Together, Kelvin and Kumi Slade run a Pasture-Fed Free Range Egg Farm with the help of their boys.
Kumi and Kelvin have practiced permaculture on their farm since buying their land in 2006. They both live in a regenerative and sustainable manner working toward self-sufficiency from their farm. Farming 23 hectares, they are able to produce an excess of farming produce beyond their own requirements, which enables them to share high quality ethical produce with local and urban families.
Kelvin and Kumi have lived in Kumi’s home country of Japan for five years in addition to living studying and working in China, Spain and the island nation of Samoa. Through this international experience they both realized in their late twenties that they wanted to grow food and raise animals in a regenerative and ethical manner. They chose Willow Grove in Gippsland for the location of our farm due to the rich soil, reliable rainfall and strong local community.
They currently nurture 3000 ISA Brown hens that roam from mobile chicken trailers. Increasing their flock size to meet growing demand for exceptional quality pasture-fed free range eggs.
In synergy with egg production they have also upgraded their vegetable garden using compost made from silage grown on the farm. Currently at around 50m2, they plan to expand the garden further this year to enable them to be mainly self-sufficient and grow produce for local farmers markets. More importantly, the vegetable garden is playing a great role demonstrating to their children the ins and outs of how to grow food and where food comes from. Each of the boys have their own plot, plant what they want to grow, care for their veggies and lead the harvesting.
WillowZen is now really getting going, realising our goals from the past 15 years. As we grow as a family and a business, we have more exciting ideas to achieve.