20.7 C
Byron Shire
December 3, 2021

Blue skies for Blueberry Fields

Latest News

Accusations of false dam claims in Cr Cadwallader’s mayoral campaign

Ballina Shire Council candidates against the idea of a new dam in Byron’s hinterland are accusing fellow candidate Sharon Cadwallader of false claims in her electoral campaign.

Other News

Lismore Residents Action Group say ‘no’ to Increased flight training

The Lismore Residents Action Group say they do not object to the future development of the airport, they say they are specifically concerned about the considerable increase in aircraft noise caused by flight training.


I wanted to give credit where it is due and thank the editor for the preferences article, which I...

Byron candidates 2021 Q&A part 2

Buckle in, seats upright, and loosen the belt!  It’s time to see what candidates have to say – in full...

Former Byron Mayor talks about the ‘Green challenge’

It’s not easy being green, it never has been, but we are proud of our long-term commitment to Greens...

Last chance for tickets to Byron Shire Council Meet the Candidates forum

Today is your last chance to get tickets to tonight’s Byron Shire Meet the Candidates forum in the Byron Theatre.

Sale of St Oswald’s

To my utter disbelief the Grafton Diocese has decided it should sell the St Oswald’s church building and land....

Otto Saeck and son Jasch from Blueberry Fields on their farm at Brooklet.

Blueberry Fields is very much a family business with father-and-son team Otto and Jasch Saeck working alongside each other on their 160-acre farm at Brooklet. Farming is part of their DNA. Otto’s father farmed potatoes and cattle on the NSW south coast and his grandfather was one of the first qualified viticulturalists to come to South Australia (from Latvia) back in the 1880s.

Despite this, both Otto and Jasch left the land to initially pursue other careers – Otto in industrial relations and Jasch in engineering – before being lured back. 

‘I was brought up on the farm and was on a tractor by the age of 10,’ Otto says. ‘But I did want to try something else and I left the family farm after I got my pilot’s licence and went aerial mustering up north before going to uni.’

Otto earned a degree in economics and industrial relations, which landed him a job in the public service. But it wasn’t long before he realised that an office job was not for him.

A connection to Ridley Bell – who brought blueberries into Australia – saw Otto leave the city to help set up the first blueberry farms on the North Coast. 

‘I left a very secure job for half the pay in a new venture in farming, but I’ve never regretted it,’ Otto says. That was 40 years ago, and in that time, Otto and his family have established their own farm and have been selling their blueberries at Byron and Bangalow Farmers Markets for almost 20 years.

In fact, Otto and wife Lynette were founding members of Byron Farmers Market in 2002. And Otto credits the farmers’ market for changing his direction in farming. 

‘We started out farming traditionally – using chemicals – and it wasn’t until we started selling at the farmers’ markets and listening to our customers that I wondered if we were doing the right thing,’ Otto says. ‘So, we looked at using alternative methods to traditional chemical use.’ 

Today, Otto and Jasch use biological farming methods to grow their great-tasting blueberries. 

Byron Farmers Market is held Thursdays 7–11am at the Cavanbah Centre and Bangalow Farmers Market is Saturdays 7–11am behind the Bangalow pub.

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Minor flooding may occur Friday morning at Coraki and Bungawalbyn

Heavy rainfall on Tuesday and Wednesday have caused river level rises along the Richmond and Wilsons Rivers with the Wilsons River peaking overnight and the...

Lismore saw one new case of COVID-19

A new case of COVID-19 was confirmed in Lismore in the 24 hours to 8pm 30 November.

Want to make your own nest box and help with bushfire recovery on Friday?

Conservation Volunteers Australia are running a nest-building workshop in one of Australia’s most biodiverse hotspots, the Nightcap Range, ‘to create homes and hope for wildlife’.

Storylines – An escape from reality

I am a teacher. I teach at University Canberra, on Ngunnawal country, in ACT. This university went into ‘Lockdown’ about four months ago. We were...