Soils For Life Showcase at Brownlow Hill

The Chair and Founder of Soils For Life, Major General Michael Jeffery, joined the program’s biggest supporter, Dr Chau Chak Wing, at the historic Brownlow Hill farm near Camden on June the 25th for a practical demonstration of the power of regenerative agriculture.

Edgar Downes, Major General Michael Jeffery & Dr. Chau Chak Wing

Brownlow Hill was the first dairy farm to service the new settlement of Sydney, and dates back to 1820. Current ownership and occupation stems back almost 160 years and Brownlow Hill has become one of Soils For Life’s case studies because of the owners’ commitment to restoring their soils.

General Jeffery said Brownlow Hill presented a unique opportunity to trace ecological, production and social changes on one of Australia’s oldest working farms, and was an ideal opportunity to introduce Dr Chau to Edgar and Lynne Downes’ successes.

General Jeffery said that revolutionary management has meant that the farm no longer used chemicals.

“Edgar Downes follows regenerative practices. He rotates his crops and renovates his pastures as needed and his cattle don't require drenching or inoculations”.

“As a result, his crops are innately resistant to mites, aphids and other pests. There is no salinity evident in either the river water nor the soil”.

“Edgar has also instituted a complex system of water management, which ensures pure flows into the Nepean water catchment and water retention for his soils”.

“Edgar has also cleverly combined the use of horse stable manure from surrounding properties to further enrich his soils to deep levels. His vision and entrepreneurship on this heritage listed property so close to Sydney provided a wonderful example of the growing movement towards regenerative agriculture for Dr Chau, the Soils For Life Board, supporters and advisers”.

Dr Chau said: “I am  proud to support this great initiative, as maintaining healthy soils is an important step in the restoration of the Australian environment”.

“I am happy to know that my support will help Soils For Life achieve great results that will ultimately benefit the whole of Australia”.


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