Bass Coast’s produce was on show for the Leader of the Nationals, Peter Walsh and Member for Eastern Victoria Region, Melina Bath who recently visited Hill Top Farm on Phillip Island.
Hill Top Farm is an award winning, family owned small business which specialises in grass fed and free-range meats.
For the past three years Hill Top Farm has won the Australian Butchers Guild award for the Greatest Butcher on your Block.
Offering a comprehensive range of local products which includes breads, cheese, wine, antipasto, jams and sauces, Hill Top Farm has evolved to become a one stop shop for some of the best produce Gippsland has to offer.
Ms Bath said Managing Director, Paul Joseph explained how Hill Top Farm had been forced to diversify after Victoria’s Covid19 lockdowns and subsequent restrictions in 2020 wiped out 80 per cent of business trade.
“In the words of Hill Top Farm, Victoria’s Covid19 restrictions had made business ‘really hard’. In the blink of eye, restaurant sales evaporated, and only local residents could access their produce.
“Removing tourists and day visitors combined with the extended closure of all hospitality businesses had an enormous impact on Gippsland’s food producers who saw their customer base disappear overnight.
“In the battle to keep the business afloat, Paul impressively pivoted his service model, introducing a range of ready speciality meals and a commenced a home delivery service.
“Drawing upon Paul’s training as a master butcher in the United Kingdom, his range of gourmet pies were born and include flavours such as scallop, steak and kidney and rabbit.
“Hill Top Farm’s service enables residents in the Bass Coast to access restaurant quality meat and hone their home chef skills – which became popular during lockdown.”
Ms Bath said Mr Joseph’s passion for supporting local farmers should be recognised and celebrated.
“He is building awareness of the food Gippsland grows and actively bringing it to the community through farmers markets and his delivery service, all while maintaining an impressive shop front.
“Hill Top Farm is a foodie’s dream and a great example of a local business who embraces the concept of ‘shop local’. It’s well worth the visit to purchase some of the best food Gippsland has on offer – don’t forget your empty esky!”