How Robyn Fox is offering sustainable farm-to-table experiences in Jamaica

The farm-to-table movement has been gathering momentum around the island of Jamaica. To many, it’s the only future with which we can sustainably feed and support an ever-growing population. There’s no better avatar for this movement than Robyn Fox, who operates businesses at all stages of the farm-to-table pipeline. EITS Cafe, Food Basket Farm, and Jamaica Mount Edge Guest House have all captivated thousands of guests over the years. We caught up with Robyn to talk about running a niche, yet treasured business, the importance of the farm-to-table, and what’s next for the EITS Café experience. 

Describe what you do as a multifaceted entrepreneur. Also, how long have you been an entrepreneur, and what has helped you stick to it?

Robyn: I operate 17 Mile Post, which includes Mount Edge Guest House, EITS Café, and Food Basket Farm. All three businesses support each other, and although somewhat integrated, the principal business is EITS Café. I started my business over ten years ago, and it is my passion that I love sharing with others. After high school, I knew I wanted to study hospitality, tourism and the service industry, as they fit so well with my personality and ambitions.

Your businesses support the local community and also promote sustainability, as a farm-to-table based entity. Explain how these practices are incorporated into your business model, and why it’s important to you. 

Robyn: The business supports the local community as most of my staff are local. We support the small farmers in the area as well as a number of other local businesses. EITS Café’s Farm to Table program promotes sustainability, as we get to use produce from our farm as well as local producers and farmers that allow us to create our menus with locally grown produce in season.

What makes an EITS Cafe experience stand out when compared to other eating options in Jamaica? 

Robyn: EITS Café, which stands for Europe In The Summer, provides a unique dining experience in a rustic venue situated near Newcastle in the Blue Mountains. The café is a relaxing space with breathtaking mountain views. It’s nature at its best. This experience is special to our local guests and tourists alike who appreciate the cool weather and the quiet setting in the mountains.

What do you think has fueled the success of your businesses over the years? 

Robyn: The success of the business is due to both local and international support. We attract a loyal local crowd on the weekends, and during the week we host tourists arranged by the local tour operators. In addition, there is an assortment of hikers, bird watchers and day-trippers who delight in stopping for a meal.

What word of advice would you give to other women who dream of turning their passion into a business? 

Robyn: Be focused on your dream, and with hard work, it may become a reality. 

Can we look out for anything new from you business-wise?

Robyn: Food Basket Farm, like all farms, has its ups and downs including unpredictable weather. In early 2023, we did major planting to return the farm to full production, which features a variety of crops including salads, herbs and vegetables.

EITS Café has added a range of events for 2023 including live music shows with Jamaican and European artistes, as well as monthly house/international music parties with a range of different DJ’s from Jamaica, South Africa & Europe.

With refurbished rooms, Mount Edge Guest House will continue to offer accommodation to local and international guests.

Follow www.17milepostja.com

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