The family behind the Oroton fashion empire could pocket over $ 20 million to sell the landmark of Byron Bay, The Farm, a 31-hectare collective of fresh produce producers and restaurants.
The property, opened five years ago at the intersection of Ewingsdale Rd and Pacific Highway, works much like a business incubator, only for sustainable farmers and food businesses.
It includes the hugely successful Three Blue Ducks restaurant, as well as a mix of other shops and cafes selling local produce from the surrounding orchards and vegetable gardens.
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There are also fields with free-range pigs, Scottish highland cattle and chickens and a training center where adults and children can learn more about where their feed comes from.
The micro-businesses are believed to generate nearly $ 1 million in annual rental income and have attracted more than 500,000 visitors last year.
The property was the brainchild of Tom Lane, the grandson of Oroton’s founder Boyd Lane, and his wife Emma, who came up with the collective when she was looking for her missing daughter on the family farm.
He finally found out that the three-year-old was spread out on a vegetable patch and was eating beans straight from the stalk, and an idea to change the food industry took shape.
“I have a revelation,” he said. “I realized that not many people have the same chance of seeing where their food comes from and that I could change that.”
His goal in building The Farm on a former magnolia and dairy station five years ago was to create a platform to promote regenerative agriculture and familiarize people with the origins of food.
“Most of us know your dentist or accountant, but we don’t know our farmer,” said Lane. “We wanted to educate people.”
Today, all local companies grow food using traditional and sustainable methods that are free of chemicals.
Mr. Lane said his hope was to sell a stake in the property to a strategic investor, which would help spread the concept across Australia.
“It’s about triggering a wave effect,” he said. “There is a global movement in people who want to know more about their food. We want to expand to Queensland and Victoria.”
The property will be listed with CBRE Hotels National Director Wayne Bunz as part of an expression of interest campaign ending this month.
Mr. Bunz, who recently sold Harvey Norman’s founder Gerry Harvey’s Byron at the Byron Resort for over $ 40 million, said there was great interest in the farm, especially from investors in Hong Kong, Sydney, and Melbourne.
“Given the success of the farm, one of them could take over the entire property, not just a stake … it will be a big sale,” said Bunz, adding that leading indicators suggested that the entire property was for over $ 20 million -Dollars could be sold.
The agent added that the Byron region has become a hot investment market. “It’s a world-famous tourist destination so wealthy people love the area,” he said.
“This property is not just about income. It’s about sustainability and organic farming and what you can do with the land. There are many options.”