DHMSCo. wins Best Organic Product Of The Year

l ro r: Mitch Watson (Co-owner, Daylesford & Hepburn), Andrew Monk (Chair, Australian Organic), Matt Welsh OAM (MC of the 2016 Australian Organic Awards of Excellence) Image supplied

l ro r: Mitch Watson (Co-owner, Daylesford & Hepburn), Andrew Monk (Chair, Australian
Organic), Matt Welsh OAM (MC of the 2016 Australian Organic Awards of Excellence) Image supplied

Daylesford & Hepburn Mineral Springs Co. wins Best Organic Product Of The Year at the 2016 Australian Organic Awards for Excellence

Last night in the suitably organic surrounds of the Collingwood Children’s Farm in Melbourne, Daylesford & Hepburn Mineral Springs Co. was awarded ‘Best Organic Product of the Year (Beverage)’ in the 2016 Australian Certified Organic Awards, for its entire Organics range of drinks.

The Daylesford & Hepburn Mineral Springs Co. Organics range was created to offer a meaningful alternative to the commercial offerings of popular soft drink varieties. With a limited offering of such product in the organic space, Daylesford & Hepburn set about creating a suite of products with predominantly locally sourced, organic ingredients.

Six flavours were crafted – Cola, Lemonade, Lemon Lime & Bitters, Orange Soda, Brewed Ginger Beer and Tonic. The packaging design took organic material cues with a retro feel, reminiscent of the soft drinks of decades past which were made in a purer way. A new, brown-tinted and embossed glass bottle was developed that is exclusive to the Organics range. As with all of Daylesford & Hepburn’s products, the drinks are bottled in recycled and recyclable glass.

In an ever-growing sector, the Australian Organic industry is worth $1.72 billion. The Daylesford & Hepburn Mineral Springs Co. Organics range comprises approx. 20% of its total domestic business. The Organics range is now stocked across cafe, restaurant and retail outlets throughout Australia, with most notable clients including George Calombaris’ Jimmy Grants outlets and David Jones Food Halls. The artisan spirits industry in Australia is in overdrive, and products within the Organics range are the preferred mixers of many.

“The demand has been high and consistent, swiftly gathering a loyal following amongst both customers and consumers. It has been a process that continues to validate our belief that Australians are eager for alternatives and crave knowledge and insight into what they are putting into their bodies – just like organic primary produce, drinks as a category is no different,” says Brylie Rankine, Co-owner, Daylesford & Hepburn Mineral Springs Co.

The Australian Organic certification exists to inform consumers about how to purchase 100% honest organic products and to communicate about what certified organic really means. Signified by the bud logo, it follows a stringent charter and is an important asset for consumers to be completely confident of the validity of a product’s organic claims.

“The winners from this year’s Australian Organic Awards for Excellence are the penultimate example of organic business brilliance and the amazing diversity that is the Australian organic industry. We are truly humbled and very proud of the growing family of leading edge business people who are making a major difference in their market segment, while also having a profound impact on the health and wellness of our environment and the consumers who are buying their products,” says Andrew Monk, Chair, Australian Organic.

Fellow finalists in the Beverage category included wineries, spirit distillers, cider producers and functional beverage manufacturers; showcasing the diversity of certified organic beverages now available. The news coincides with ten years since Daylesford & Hepburn Mineral Springs Co first began. After landing in Daylesford, hospitality stalwarts Mitch Watson and Brylie Rankine were gob-smacked at the proliferation of imported mineral water, in a region that possessed the highest number of mineral springs in the country. So with little more than a credit card and a drive to create change, the duo began bottling their first local mineral waters in the spring of 2006, delivering just 300 cases to the local shops.

Since then, key initiatives have seen the business become a blueprint for sustainable small business. Carbon emissions of the entire car fleet are offset through Greenfleet, with contributions so far helping to plant nearly 1,400 native trees. Its innovative eco-keg uses the existing reticulation systems seen in many restaurants and bars to enable DHMSCo water to be offered by the glass or refillable bottle – the unit is returned for recycling, closing the loop. A new headquarters in Daylesford will open at the end of 2016, which includes a solar array as its key energy source (that will feed excess energy back into the grid). All activities at the new facility will be offset by Hepburn Wind’s ‘Community Green’ product; Daylesford & Hepburn Mineral Springs Co is one of the first businesses to adopt this offset product. The business continues to be an investor in Hepburn Wind, Australia’s first community-owned renewable energy generator.

The company’s range of waters, flavoured mineral waters, mixers and juices are available in high-end restaurants, sought-after cafes and providores in Australia and around the World.