Young farmers turned to sharefarming as an alternative to owning their own land.

An aspiring young farmer Hanna Navara and Leon Hoffmann-Detenhoff have decided to do sharefarming as an alternative way of owning their own land because the land prices in the North Coast of New South Wales is soaring high.

A 28 years old Ms Navara has studied alternative farming methods such as permaculture and regenerative farming for 3 years. That time, she was just looking for a market garden to run but then it turned her attention on hemp (more on seeds and oil).

She said, “It’s quite hard to sustain a living as a small-scale grower.” 

Leon and Hanna started looking for land after acquiring the relevant licenses. But because the land in North Coast increased by 2.5% compared to the previous quarter it was just 1%, that was around July 2019 and July 2020, Hanna discovered about sharefarming. 

She advertised all about sharefarming on social media and then she met Mike and Cheryl Smith, an established organic farmer from Solum Farm in Maroro, Australia. They own a 10-hectare e certified organic lime farm and have been farming ever since. 

According to Mike, sharefarming agreement involves sharing costs and profit equally and relies on effective communication to ensure it remains viable. “You have to have a very long conversation with anyone you’re going to jump into bed with,” he said.

“ You can draw up all the legal contracts and arrangement, but the moment you have to pick up that piece of paper alarm bells should go off,” he added.

He also shared that in an emerging industry, producing Australian certified hemp oil had a strong appeal to them. 

“ It’s very difficult to get Australian organic certified hemp oil, that’s why we’ve gone down the oil path,” he said.

Hemp oil in Australia is the primary use for food consumption because it is riched in Omega 3 which is good for the heart and omega-6 content that is used to make soaps and lotions. While medicinal cannabis oil was only used for health conditions and remedies.

Hanna said, “ after moving from another farm and then enduring the drought, bushfires and red tape, I am hopeful that this season will bring the fruits of their labour.”

“ We’re about six weeks off harvest. We’ll be able to tell when we put them through the hemp seed oil machine and get the exact numbers,” she added.