Newsletter August 2012

Newsletter – August 2012

Happy Harvesters
Lets get right to it and start with our Happy Harvesters event which took place this past Saturday! We had a fantastic turnout of around 50+ people, which is a bit more than we expected! The idea with Happy Harvesters is to bring folks together who are interested in good food and growing their own; from cooks and distributors, to backyard food growers, farmers, and community gardeners. Its a platform to network, share ideas, experiences and even surplus seeds and produce.

For our first event, we had two speakers who addressed two key aspects of building local resilience into our food system. Remember, as the price of oil continues to increase, so does food that is reliant on fossil fuel inputs (oil and natural gas based fertilizers and pesticides etc)  and have far to travel between producer and consumer.

Nicola Schwim from Organic Footprints

One the one side, there is the need to support local producers who are doing it right by reducing chemical inputs and going organic. To speak more on this we had Nicola Schwim from Organic Footprints who went into great detail on why its important to support these producers. If you are interested to see what they supply, be sure to visit their website! Orders are taken twice a week.

Jakkie Botha from Urban Harvest

Then the other side is learning to grow at least some of our own food. Jakkie Botha from Urban Harvest spoke more on why this is important, what her experiences have been like in the garden, and how she, together with her sister, Susan, are trying to share their knowledge by providing regular training workshops. Everything they do is based on the principles of permaculture. We made a post about Urban Harvest a while back which you can find here

Leos Sunshine Produce were selling some seedlings, Urban Harvest brought some surplus produce to share, and we brought some seedlings as well which were excess from gardens. There were some interesting ideas discussed and a keen interest to see this event take place on a regular basis. If you were there, please share with us your thoughts on the event and if you have some ideas for it, we’d like to hear them!

Transition Food Group
So we think its time the NMB Transition Network had a group that focuses specifically on the issue of food in the metro! And we wonder if any of you would like to be involved?

The idea is for this group to come together and meet regularly to chat about food issues and how we can build local resilience into our food system. The group could then look at organizing events such as the Happy Harvesters, gardening workshops, edible garden open days, local food dinners etc. The only requirement is that you are passionate about food! So if you’re interested, drop Ryan an email ( and then we can chat more about it.

World Rhino Day 22 September
22 September is World Rhino Day, and to raise awareness and funds for Rhino conservation and anti-poaching initiatives, a countrywide Rhino Run has been organized. The PE run will take place at Crossways Farm Village, and there is the option to do either the 6km, 12km, or 20km trail. If you are keen to know more or want to register for the run, be sure to visit their website: Money raise will go to Endangered Wildlife Trust MyPlanet Rhino Fund and the Thandi Rhino Injection Fund

GreenTimes weekly newsletter
Each week Green Times put out a newsletter on Green things happening around the country and the rest of the world. The latest issue includes article on waterless urinals, a visit from GreenPeace’s ship, the Rainbow Warrior, rhino and elephant conservavtion and the threat of coal power in India. Read the latest on their website:

Penguin release @ SAMREC – 19 Aug. Photo by Martheanne Finnemore of WESSA

Huge turnout for penguin release
We were quite chuffed to hear that the penguin release at SAMREC on Sunday was incredibly well attended (a few hundred by the seem of things). SAMREC are doing some really great work to rehabilitate African Penguins, which are endangered largely because of  pollution and declining fish stocks.  They could always use a few extra hands so if you are keen to volunteer or perhaps make a donation, give them a call on 041 5831830.

New Green Publication
So while stopping in at Urban Harvest’s recent food gardening workshop in Jeffrey’s Bay, we stumbled across the Green Home magazine, which i hadn’t seen on the shelves before. Some interesting items in there, so keep an eye out.

Metro Integrated Public Transport System public meeting 
With reference to the implementation of the Integrated Public Transport system in October this year, the Municipality has scheduled a series of IPTS public participation meetings, starting on Monday, 20 August 2012, at 17h30 at the Raymond Mhlaba Centre, the first of 11 such meetings scheduled in areas located along the initial seven routes on which the buses will operate initially.

At the public meetings, residents will be provided with more information on the system, particularly the exact routes where the buses will run, the proposed ticketing system, start-off points, etc.

Organic Food Gardening Workshops at Honeyville
Dave Golding from Honeyville at our Happy harvesters event mentioned that they have some organic food gardening workshops taking place in September. For more details, visit their website:

Thats all for this months newsletter!

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