The aim of Marleen Herbs of Tasmania is to grow and process medicinal plants with the use of sustainable methods. Organic agriculture and processing without the use and production of environment unfriendly substances are the main trademarks.
Together with good weather and some luck this should lead to production and sales of fresh plant-parts and liquid extracts with favourable high contents of active ingredients.
The aim of Marleen Herbs of Tasmania influences all aspects of the farm:
Of course the farmyard and surroundings is also maintained organically. Non-productive borders and pasture is made more divers by yearly mowing and a biomass removing regime.
The buildings and house are built with sustainability in mind: plantation wood, waterbased paint, insulation with mineral wool and agricultural waste-products and reusing of building materials.
A 5KW solar-energy system provides the energy for our electric tractor in addition to providing heating for the house and laboratorium.
The herb-drier uses the warm air created by the 400 m2 steel-plated roof from the processing building.
A separate water-system provides rainwater to facilities where there is no need to use drinkable-water (e.g. washingmachine, dishwasher, toilet and cooling-water for the vacuum distillation equipment).
Effluent water is cleaned by an onsite filtration-system.
A BIT OF HISTORY
Ronald and Marleen van de Winckel have been growing herbs since 1982.
At first this was limited to about ten different species of medicinal herbs, for the production of herbal teas.
Since 1990 we mainly grow medicinal plants intended for use in phytotherapeutic- and homeopathic-preparations.
Marleen Herbs (formerly known as 'Marleen Kruiden') is a family-business that intends to produce as efficiently as possible with the use of specialized cultivation- and processing-machinery. The technical background of Ronald van de Winckel (Agricultural Engineering at the University of Wageningen, the Netherlands) is certainly one of the reasons for this choice.
If necessary, we hire specialized labour and knowledge, e.g. during labour-intensive periods in the fields and for specialized analysis of products. For processing, we use a herb-drier and a laboratory for the production of plant-extracts.
In 2011 we started with our Tasmanian production on a 40 hectare, (which has since increased to 80 hectare) mixed-farm.