Where to get organic fruit, vegetables, artisanal style preserves, pickles, jams, cheeses and breads! June 27, 2018 21:36

Merryn and Ron Scott own Aloe Dale which produces organically grown fruit, vegetables and so much more.

Merryn & Ron Scott the owners of Aloe Dale Organic Farm

It is wonderful to see how a simple idea has grown into a fully fledged business.

Aloe Dale Farm produces organic fruit, vegetables, artisanal style preserves, pickles, jams, cheeses and breads

Dear Reader Letter by Merryn Scott of Aloe Dale Farm

Dear Reader

One of my earliest memories is of my grandmother’s tiny kitchen. She would send me to fetch a lemon from one of the trees for the lemon cake she was making, a sprig of parsley to garnish the savoury biscuits, a handful of mint for the roast lamb or some tomatoes from my grandfather’s vegetable garden. The tomatoes grew in old paint tins, 2 of the lemon trees grew in massive steel vats which he had salvaged from Durban harbour… Sometimes I would get distracted by Grandpa if he was picking beans or turning the compost, but Gran never complained as she really just wanted me out of the kitchen!

Carrots, onions, beetroot, red & green peppers from Aloe Dale Organic Farm in Midrand

A favourite game was to count all the edibles on my parent’s one third of an acre.  The whole neighbourhood would exchange fruit and vegetables. From time to time the Indian fruit and veg man came around and asked to buy the crop from our litchi tree or a couple of banana bunches. It is only recently that I have come to understand why they always declined.  Instead they would barter a couple of banana hands or a bag of litchis for some apples, cucumber or other produce they did not grow – they preferred to share what they grew with the neighbours and would receive in return a few extra eggs from a neighbours pet chicken, a leg of lamb from a cousins farm, mangoes from up the road or avocados from Grandpa’s massive tree…

Organic Brinjals & Tree Tomatoes from Aloe Dale Farm

My first herb garden was grown from slips and cuttings I picked up wherever I went as I was a student with no income!

Green & Red Peppers from Aloe Dale Organic Farm

Aloe Dale emerged out of a simple idea to grow as much as we could of the food consumed by our household, horses, dogs and chickens in a sustainable and organic manner. It took a while to convince my husband, Ron, that the chemical pesticides and fertilisers he had previously relied on in his vegetable growing exploits were not necessary. He soon saw how the insect and bird diversity in our garden improved and he gave in with one last “yes dear”. 

Beetroot, carrots & onions from Aloe Dale organic Farm

We expanded and soon had more produce than we could use, share or preserve. We looked for someone who could use our excess and found an emerging organic movement in Johannesburg. This fringe movement in the food industry felt “right” to me. I found a small company who would take our excess produce to add to their vegetable box scheme… and so Aloe Dale was born.

Fresh Free Range eggs from Aloe Dale Farm at the Glen Fresh Market in Midrand

We also make our own artisanal style preserves, pickles, jams, cheeses and breads using the skills our grandparents grew up with. We encourage small-scale, holistic, poly cultural agronomy. We work with several local, sustainable growers, distributing for households who produce small excesses but do not have a market, NGO-run organic agricultural programmes and larger commercial internationally certified organic farms.

Artisanal Jams & Curd from Aloe Dale Farm at the Glen Fresh Market

We are situated in Midrand and grow a wide variety of organic herbs, vegetables and fruit. We supply chefs, caterers, restaurateurs and delicatessens that care as much as we do about how the food they serve is grown. We continue to expand and diversify, growing all manner of unconventional varieties of food by special request.

Fresh organically grown carrots from Aloe Dale Farm available at the Glen Fresh Market

To eat freshly harvested fruit and vegetables visit the Aloe Dale stall @118 Allan every Saturday morning from 8.00 to 12.30. It is wonderful to see how the community return every week to the Glen Fresh Market for fresh supplies.

Rusks, artisanal Pickles, Jams, Marmalade, Curd & bread from Aloe Dale Farm available at the Glen Fresh Market in Midrand

We believe that everyone should grow at least some of the food they consume, even if it is sprouts or fresh herbs grown next to the kitchen sink.

“Nothing tastes as good as something that you have grown yourself! “

 

Artisanal Pickles & Marmalade from Aloe Dale Farm available at the Glen Fresh Market in Midrand every Saturday from 8.00 to 12.30

Happy Gardening

Merryn

Organically grown Red & Green Peppers from Aloe Dale Farm

Learning about the stall holders and being part of the Glen Austin community at the Glen Fresh Market has made an enormous difference in my life. I am surrounded by an amazing group of caring people who inspire me.

Do you believe in buying organic fruit and vegetables? We would love to hear from you.