Investment in innovation is driving success for many farmers, including family-run South Australian business SA Mushrooms, one of the state’s largest and successful privately owned mushroom farms.

CBA is building awareness about how agribusinesses, such as SA Mushrooms, are investing in agritech to improve sustainability and productivity, as part of evokeAG, Asia Pacific’s premier agrifood tech event.

With CBA’s support, SA Mushrooms, run by brothers Nick Femia and Nat Femia, their father Sam Femia Senior and Nick’s son Sam Femia junior, has invested significantly in sustainability over the past four years.

The fully integrated business introduced a new enterprise resource program and other process monitoring systems which have driven efficiency and quality gains that have led to 150 per cent growth in this time.

Today SA Mushrooms produces around 55 tonnes of mushrooms a week which are supplied to major retailers, markets and greengrocers around Australia. Mr Femia said CBA provided invaluable support for the SA Mushroom’s growth and innovation plans.

“CBA has specialised understanding about what it takes to make an agribusiness successful, and all the processes along the way, from preparation to harvesting, shipping and getting products on shop shelves,” he said. “It’s a long-term journey and we both put customers at the centre of what we do.”

Commonwealth Bank Regional and Agribusiness Executive General Manager Paul Fowler said more agribusinesses were turning to CBA’s sustainable finance solutions to help build resilience into their day-to-day operations.

“Using sustainable finance options to invest in agritech is one way agribusinesses can create healthier natural capital while reducing risks and increasing productivity,” Mr Fowler said.

“Our close connections with customers, industry bodies and research experts gives us an in depth understanding of how farmers can use sustainable finance to improve production and consumption practices in different environments. 

“This is one reason why CBA has continued to be a market leader in agribusiness finance for the past 100 years.” 

CBA has a range of sustainable finance options including Australia’s first Agri Green Loan, which provides discounted, incentive-based finance to encourage investment for eligible purposes that we know enhances natural capital, lower emissions or increase carbon sequestration.

Our Energy Efficient Equipment Finance solution, also provides discounted, incentive-based finance for investment in carbon efficient or sustainable assets, including eligible second-hand assets to the circular economy.

For our corporate agricustomers, our Sustainability-Linked Loans, enable companies to signal their commitment to ESG outperformance by tying the cost of financing to targets based on ESG metrics that are related to their sector.

CBA also has a range of solutions to support farmers as they embark into environmental markets, such as carbon farming.

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