Carrots, anyone?

A Queenstown company has 10 tonnes of organic carrots to give away to schools, charities and people in need, at two different locations in the lower South Island.

Organic Solutions owner James Porteous got his hands on the huge amount of BioGro certified organic carrots from Willowmere Organic Farm, a 300-acre property in Hororata, just outside Christchurch.

Organic Solutions often buys produce from the Canterbury farm, to supplement the 16 organic crops grown on its own organic Oamaru farm. But, in this case, Willowmere didn’t have time to sort through the tonnes of carrots picking out the good and getting rid of the bad, and were planning to dispose of the lot.

That’s where the Organic Solutions team came in. Once James found out they were destined for compost, he knew he could make something work. Willowmere offered him an amazing deal he couldn’t resist, and his staff soon began sorting through the carrots.

Traditionally Organic Solutions buys about one tonne of carrots a month, so the current haul is nearly a year’s worth all at once.

The carrots are currently for sale at Thai2Go Queenstown and Thai2Go Timaru, both owned by Organic Solutions, for the small price of $10 for 5kg. But schools, charities and people going through a tough time are being encouraged to pop in and pick some up for free.

“Because we have so many organic carrots available at once we want to offer them up to good causes,” says James. “This way they don’t go waste and it might brighten up someone’s day.

“Wasting food really goes against our ethos at Organic Solutions, so whatever we can’t use will be sent to our worm farm and turned into worm castings.”

Carrots will be used in both Thai takeaway locations and distributed to some Queenstown restaurants with which Organic Solutions has business relationships.

The bulk of the carrots are being stored in Oamaru and are available for the next few weeks in Queenstown and Timaru, if not sold or given away before then.

Carrots 101 – all you need to know

  • Carrots are one of the most sprayed and chemically grown crops in New Zealand
  • Organic carrots usually retail at $7.99 a kg because all weeding has to be done by hand
  • Carrots are about 10% carbs, consisting of starch, fibre and simple sugars
  • Extremely low in fat and protein
  • Excellent source of Vitamin A (beta carotene)
  • Linked to a reduced risk of cancer and heart disease
  • Improved eye health
  • Bugs Bunny loves them

Organic Solutions owns and operates Thai2Go Queenstown, Queenstown Wholefoods, Oamaru Organics, Thai2Go Timaru and Worms to Waste.