Queensland, Autralia (Syngenta, Aug 8,2017): Through farming, agronomist Mr Tommy Le is offering the Vietnamese community in Glenore Grove, Queensland, a second chance at life through agriculture.
Mr Le is a Vietnamese immigrant who came to Australia in 1987 after spending two years in a refugee camp in Thailand.
His family’s difficult journey inspired himto dedicate his adult life to helping other families like his.
“My aim is to share my knowledge so I can help more people. I’m very lucky to have come to Australia at such a young age, attended school and learnt English,” Mr Le said.
“Others are not so lucky and need a lot more help acclimating to the new culture and working to provide for their families.”
Mr Le’s commitment to community was celebrated in 2016 when he received the Syngenta Growth Award for Community and People.
Building a positive image for the Vietnamese farming community is important to Mr Le and he’s in the process of developing a brand for them across Australia’s agricultural industry and various consumer networks.
For the last two years, Mr Le has worked tirelessly developing and marketing a niche tribal cucumber variety, which is delivering premium returns for his growers.
He worked closely with Syngenta in the seed development process, and is now building capacity amongst his growers.
My aim is to support the community in achieving the highest possible value for their products so that they can support their families. – Mr Tommy Le
Mr Le provides his growers with technical agronomy support and, through his own company, LT Fresh, he helps procure greenhouse equipment and supplies, to keep their operations up and running.
Along with this, he provides business advice to ensure they’re operating efficiently and profitably.
“We’re starting to get traction with the new range. I’ve been focusing on marketing and have some great opportunities in the works.”
“I’m also working on finding more growers to meet the increase in demand. We’re hoping to slowly build scale.”
Tribal cucumbers are currently stocked in quality grocers and IGA supermarkets across Queensland.
Mr Le also works closely with wholesale marketing agents to ensure their products are stocked in larger supermarkets in Queensland and New South Wales.
“The variety delivers what consumers are looking for,” Mr Le said.
“It gives better taste, crunch and shelf life. The tribal cucumber has a smaller seed cavity allowing for less oxidation, so it doesn’t go bad as quickly and there’s less waste.”
Mr Le is moving ahead with all of his projects, including his cucumber production.
He’s continually developing his agronomy work with EE Muir and Sons, as well as providing equipment for growers through LT Fresh.
But above all else, Mr Le’s focus remains on supporting his Vietnamese growing community and their families.