The Mount Zero story began in 1946, when farmer and entrepreneur, Jacob Friedman, recognized the Wimmera/Grampians region as prime olive-growing country and began planting some of the first commercial olive groves in Australia. Today Mount Zero draws on produce from the Wimmera and Grampians region, as well as select olive groves across Victoria. Commitment to flavour, sustainable farming and a passion for quality ingredients defines Mount Zero and all that we gather.
In 1993, the Seymour family bought part of Jacob Friedman’s original plantation at the base of Mount Zero. Today, with 30 years’ experience in the growing, fermenting and milling olives and olive oil, Neil, Jane & Richard Seymour are now working with like-minded Victorian olive growers to produce some of Australia’s finest and most rewarded olives and olive oils.
In 2010, Jane, Neil and Richard were inducted as "Melbourne Food & Wine Legends" for excellence in food production and the appreciation of, and engagement with, the best produce.
Launched in 1993, The Legends of Melbourne Food and Wine pays tribute to the leaders, ground breakers and visionaries of Victoria's food and wine industry. Each year Melbourne Food and Wine announces new inductees into the Festival's Legend status.
What we harvest and gather is of huge importance to us but how we harvest is even more important. Ethical and sustainable produce is a current buzzword in the world of food, but we've built a brand over the past 30 years based on respect to the environment, the people of our region and the customers that consume our goods.
With our heritage as biodynamic farmers, we are passionate about sustainability, however we know that this does not end at the farm fence. We are focused on sustainable packaging, reducing and eliminating our carbon footprint and providing the healthiest and most delicious food.
Our collaboration with the traditional land owners of the Wimmera region, the Barengi Gadjin Land Council, with whom we harvest the Pink Lake in Dimboola, is one of our most proud associations. This partnership allows Mount Zero to show respect and acknowledgement for Australia's indigenous community while engaging to harvest and market the product.
Closely following the advice of the Barengi Gadjin - we collaboratively hand harvest the lake for just 2 weeks a year to maintain this beautiful natural resource and the unique surrounds.
Steve and Tanya Walter - Burrum Biodynamics are 5th generation farmers that have converted the family farm to certified Bio-dynamic in 2008. Steve and Tanya grow all of Mount Zero's certified biodynamic pulses & grains. Read more here.
Graham and Judith Carter - Serviceton (West Wimmera) have been certified organic farmers for more than 25 years. Graham and Judith grow Mount Zero's Organic Chickpeas that are also the base of our Organic Falafel Mix. You can read more about the Carter family here.
The Matthews Family - Rapanyup have been cropping in the Wimmera for more than 90 years. The Matthews grow all of Mount Zero's French Style Green Lentils. Read more here.
Peter Blair - Kalkee was one of the pioneering farmers in the 1980's and 90's who first started growing pulses in the Wimmera. This has lead to greater soil fertility (nitrogen) across the Wimmera and a diversification away from traditional wheat, barely and canola. Peter grows Mount Zero's Beluga Black Lentils and Persian Red Lentils.
John and Marjan Symington have olive groves in the Goulburn Valley and West Wimmera. John and Marjan have been important partners to Mount Zero since 2014 and are the source of our award-winning Frantoio Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Being situated in the Goulburn Valley gives John & Marjan are ideally placed to draw on the bounty of citrus also grown in the region and for this reason they are perfectly suited to crushing our agrumato (citrus pressed) olive oils.
Kyriacou Family - Nick, Zac and Andrew are second & third-generation olive growers in South Australia's Adelaide Plains. With a Greek Cypriot background the Kyriacou family are passionate about table olives - Kalamata in particular. The Kyriacou olive grove is certified organic and they have been the source of Mount Zero's famous Kalamata and Mixed Olives since 2001.
Melbourne Food and Wine Festival -Each year food and wine lovers indulge in more than 200 events cross Melbourne's vast offering of restaurants, spaces and laneways.
As official olive and olive oil partner of the event we enjoy pride of place on tables at the World's Longest Lunch, on stage at the many master class events with international rock star chefs and on everything at the annual festival hub.