How did World Soil Day go at C-Wise?
This new event for C-Wise attracted a diverse audience drawing from government and industry as well as growers and academics. Included in the attendees were: Paddi Creevey former mayor City of Mandurah, David Strickland President of Australian Institute of Horticulture WA, David Arkwright Peel Development Commission, Brian Backhouse from Costa, Zakaria Solaiman University Of Western Australia, Russell Reynolds Cowaramup Wines, Chris Oliver Australian Institute of Horticulture, John Forrest Challenger Institute of Technology, Esther Ngang CEO Landscape Industry Association of WA, Caroline Knight Councillor City of Mandurah, Kiwi Hall of Statewide Turf Services and Merri Harris SJ Food and Farm Alliance.
CEO of C-Wise Craig Salt welcomed guests and introduced them to the business of transforming waste streams into valuable soil carbon solutions. He also demonstrated how C-Wise respects its stakeholders by proactivly working on the odor issue in the Peel Harvey catchment. C-Wise is working collaboratively with all three of the businesses operating on the site including one of the states largest piggeries and a mushroom substrate producing facility.
Sustainability expert Chris Ferreira and garden media personality Sabrina Hahn gave visitors a “hands in” demonstration of how to transform what are the least fertile soils in the world with small additions of Bentonite clay and high value carbon soil improver Humicarb into productive healthy soils that don’t leak nutrients and water. Sabrina talked of the role of soil biology in fostering plant growth and combating plant pathogens by boosting this biology not with artificial fertilisers, but instead with organic matter.
Chris, famous for a colourful turn of phrase, compared laying an artificial lawn with seeking love from a blowup doll. This certainly got a chuckle!
Craig Salt spoke about the C-Wise mission of a world where soil carbon is valued. The true significance is not just for soil building and improvement but also for saving the planet. Craig showed a powerful new C-Wise video which explains the inbalance of the carbon cycle. It demonstrates how soil can sequester ‘planet saving’ quantities of carbon from the atmosphere and turn degraded soil into a productive powerhouse to grow high quality food.
Click here to view the video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s69cHLjcUMY
No visit to C-Wise is complete without a tour of the composting platform. Not only does this show how commercial composting is done to exacting specifications it also demonstrates the art as well as the science of turning waste into “gold” for our soils.
Separate workshops followed where Chris Ferreira talked about sustainable farming and Deb Archdeacon, agronomist extraordinaire, gave results from recent UWA trials on lettuce growing. Neville Passmore together with Sabrina Hahn talked about sustainable gardening and what’s weird and wonderful in the garden.
At the close of the event all participants were asked to fill in a short questionnaire on the day.
If you combine the “strongly agree" and "agree” responses from the 4 questions posed to participants then: 100% said the event was valuable to them, 79% said they received information relevant to their businesses, 97% liked the site tour and 94% liked the workshop they attended. By any measure this spells success!
Some of the written comments included “Reinforced that soil biology = human biology”, “Team presentation communicated depth of knowledge and passion for the product”, “Loved the enthusiasm of the team”, “Great to see sustainability of our land” and “ It has been great to visit this innovative place again”.
The C-Wise team hope that you will look again at the video and join us next year for World Soil Day as we make this celebration an annual "not to be missed" event.