Crissy Rowcliff has won the 2022 Slow Food Hunter Valley Innovation Award | The Maitland Mercury | Maitland, NSW

“It’s recognition of the innovative ways that I try to take a raw product and turn it into something else, so that what I don’t use, or sell at the market, can be preserved and used.”

Ms Rowcliff has developed a range of cordials, jams, dukkah, salt rubs and dried native herbs. She also has bees and makes a range of honey products, although that venture is uncertain with the varroa mite eradication zone now 500 metres from her property.

“At the moment there is a glut of citrus so I turn that into cordials. In the summer when there is a glut of berries and there are too many to eat all at once, I freeze some and then I turn them into jams.”

“In the absence of a large-scale commercial washing machine, John invented a wash bay that allowed us to wash our turmeric, capture the waste water and reuse it for irrigation. I am still using the wash bay,” she said.

“It is fair to say that he had a rich skill-set that is very rare in today’s world and often only found in ‘old farmers’ who have been forced to innovate … necessity is truly the mother of invention.”

“We have recognised her efforts to pivot her business into reflecting her indigenous heritage. She’s doing that in what she is growing and how she is very innovative with the products she creates,” Ms Dempster said.

“I’d like to thank Amorelle and her team of volunteers for their wonderful support, they have been very encouraging and have wanted me to achieve and to make better produce,” she said.