Sam and Vanessa Licciardello Orchard 1 SixtyBY SUSIE MURPHY WHITE PROJECT MANAGER, POMEWESTSam and Vanessa Licciardello are the third generation of orchardists on Orchard Sixty in Donnybrook. The orchard was started in 1950 by his grandfather Sam, who emigrated from Sicily.On the 45-hectare orchard they grow mainly apples and pears along with plums, nectarines, peaches and cherries with his dad Cirino.The varieties of apples include Fuji, Granny Smith and Pink Lady, while the majority of their production come from the pears; Barlett, Packhams, Golden Bosc and Corrella.During the warmer months they also grow summer crops of pumpkins to utilise fallow areas of the orchard, which are being turned over to new varieties.Sam and Vanessa said they changed their business model to become more cost-efficient, increase yields on smaller production areas and focus on growing for the consumer demand.They are always striving to produce the best fruit they can and to ensure the maximum freshness they only pack to order for their markets and into the chain stores.Their farm shop shows their commitment to quality produce, as only best fruit is on display.Selling from their farm shop and being highly involved with the Donnybrook Apple Festival provides the opportunity to give time to educate the consumers.At the Apple Festival this year, Sam was able to give time to people concerned about cool storage and help them to understand that there is nothing adverse happening to fruit in cool store.“They almost died when I told them that the Pink Lady samples they were enjoying were 11 months old,” Sam said.Sam’s passion for the Donnybrook Apple Festival is to be commended, as his commitment to the festival ensured that we had a great range of apples and pears for sale from 12 different growers from the Donnybrook area.VANESSA and Sam Licciardello with daughters Mia, Amber and Jade.LONG term employee CIRINO Licciardello.His support to the local community and the pome industry is also apparent in his commitment to the Pomewest committee.Daughters Amber, Jade and Mia are very much the apple of Sam’s eye and already showing an interest in continuing the family tradition, helping out in the pack shed during the holidays.Middle daughter Jade was keen to talk to festival goers about apples and pears.Sam’s wife Vanessa keeps everyone on track, running the books and administration.The crew of long-term employees became very important during the pandemic for Orchard 1 Sixty – ensuring they were able to continue operating with minimal impact.MORE INFORMATIONContact Susie Murphy White at or phone (08) 9777 0151.