Coles Nurture Fund: Empowering Aussie Farmers and Suppliers for Sustainable Growth
Coles is reaffirming its dedication to supporting Australian producers through the announcement of the opening of applications for Round 12 of the Coles Nurture Fund. The fund offers grants of up to $500,000 to drive innovation, sustainability, and growth in projects.
Now celebrating its tenth year, the Coles Nurture Fund has been instrumental in assisting Australian growers and suppliers in developing market-leading products, technologies, systems, and processes. Since its inception in 2015, the fund has provided over $33 million in financial support to more than 100 businesses across the country.
Recipients of the Nurture Fund, such as Mt. Boothby Pastoral and Newton Orchards, showcase how producers are at the forefront of innovation and sustainability. Mt. Boothby Pastoral, a family-run agricultural business in Tintinara, South Australia, utilized the grant to install a solar energy system, contributing to a more integrated agricultural system and reducing its carbon footprint.
Andrew Johnson, Managing Director of Mt. Boothby Pastoral, expressed pride in the closed-loop, diversified production system made possible by the Coles Nurture Fund. The system, powered entirely by solar energy, includes feed milling, reducing transportation emissions, and benefiting both the environment and animals.
Newton Orchards in Manjimup, Western Australia, best known for its apples, received a $250,000 grant to install permanent netting over its orchards. This protective measure has significantly reduced water usage by 30% and ensured premium-quality fruit by preventing bird damage.
Nicole Giblet, director at Newton Orchards, highlighted the lasting impact of the nets, emphasizing their role in growing top-grade fruit in a challenging climate. The orchard also invested part of the grant in habitat restoration for cockatoos, contributing to a sustainable coexistence with wildlife.
Coles Executive General Manager Fresh, Andy Mossop, commended the Coles Nurture Fund’s impact on small and medium-sized businesses. He encouraged eligible businesses—those generating less than $25 million in annual revenue with 50 or fewer full-time employees—to apply before the February 23 deadline.
Mossop emphasized Coles’ commitment to investing in projects aligned with their values, fostering strong relationships in the supply chain, and ultimately contributing to the future of Australian agriculture.