How you can buy the essentials and save local businesses
WHILE supermarket shelves are quickly being emptied of essential pantry and fridge items, one volunteer-run organisation still has plenty of stock to help feed Ipswich residents during the coronavirus pandemic.
Ipswich Good Food Group stock a wide range of fresh fruit, vegetables and herbs direct from farmers, as well as bread, dairy items, eggs, dry goods, juices, laundry products and more.
Ipswich Good Food Group committee member Wendy Johnston said the group, which has been operating in the city for seven years, offered a space for shoppers to buy food free of manufactured and artificial chemicals.
"We buy in bulk and are really happy to be supporting our local farmers and producers," she said.
"We have a really good relationship with the farmers and have set prices, so you know the farmers aren't going to fall over.
"All our fresh produce comes from within a five hour radius of Brisbane, from northern New South Wales as far up as Bundaberg.
"It really works in a situation like this because we don't have any issues with the short supply chain that other supermarkets might have."
Suppliers and producers that help Ipswich Good Food Group include Lehmann's Layers and 9Dorf Farms, both from the Lockyer Valley, Nature Cycle Karalee, Scenic Rim 4 Real Milk, Maleny Dairies, Barambah Organics in the Border Rivers region of southern Queensland, Sutton Farm near Stanthorpe and Kin Kin Naturals in the Noosa hinterland.
Ms Johnston said it operated like any other store where people could come in, look around and pick up their groceries.
"We are just like a little retail store," she said.
"Normally we would like people to come in and have a chat, but with the current crisis, we are limiting the number of people in the store, making sure people get what they need and go home, which is exactly what the government is asking us to do."
The Ipswich Good Food Group does run off membership fees, which is $25 for six months or $50 for a year.
For more information, phone Wendy on 0403 975 153 or log onto www.ipswichgoodfood.org.
Read more stories from Ashleigh Howarth.