Thi Giang Pham – Vegetable farming
- Name: Thi Giang Pham
- Nationality: Vietnamese
- Family members: My husband Ba Tien Tran; and two children Pham Thuy Linh Tran and Thu Ha Tran – Tien Dat Tran
- Visa type: 188 – innovation stream
- Location: Brisbane
- Why choose this location: The weather in Queensland is wonderful and similar to the weather in Vietnam so we feel comfortable here and it was easier for us to adapt to our new environment.
First steps and experiences in building a new life
Q: What were you doing before you moved to Australia?
A: Before moving to Australia, I part-owned and was the director of a transportation company. In addition to this main business, the company expanded into forestation and the processing of forest products.
Q: What were the biggest challenges?
A: One of the biggest challenges to myself and my whole family was the language barrier. Because of this it was hard for us to start a business and also to adapt to a totally new environment with a different culture and a different language. The second challenge was that we were not familiar with any Australian and Queensland regulations and laws initially, but then with the help of friends and family, it finally became a little bit easier.
Q: What were the greatest successes?
A: Despite our past difficulties, we have successfully established four greenhouses to rely less on weather conditions to enable us to generate a greater yield output and faster growth than outdoor alternatives.
Migration Queensland nomination process
Q: How did you find out about Queensland nomination and why did you choose a state-nominated business visa?
A: I did a lot of research online via the Migration Queensland and Home Affairs websites, sought professional advice and spoke with friends who successfully migrated to Australia on this type of visa.
Q: What was your experience with the application process? Do you have advice for prospective applicants?
A: I was not the one who submitted application due to my English language ability at that time. I would recommend people who are in the same situation as me to find a reliable agent or solicitor to help them with their application.
Q: What businesses and investments do you have currently in Queensland?
A: We are running a vegetable farm in South East Queensland. We specialise in growing and wholesale distribution of a variety of fresh produce such as cucumbers, okras, eggplants, and zucchini. It depends on the weather and water conditions to select what we are going to plant each season.
Q: What do you consider your biggest business achievement in Queensland to be?
A: We have successfully increased the crop production, gained more customer satisfaction, and improved our management skills to be able to handle any challenges that come our way.
Q: What are the most positive aspects of doing business in Queensland?
A: Most Queenslanders that I have met so far are super friendly and helpful. They are willing to help at any time. In my situation, I have learnt a lot of farming knowledge and techniques from the local farmers who are living nearby and from the local agricultural stores. These stores even sent their technician out to get our plants checked without charge and gave us a lot of helpful information.
Q: What are your next steps?
A: In the future, I hope to expand my business through crop diversification and a higher production scale, and seeking more customers and suppliers. I plan to invest in building additional greenhouses for growth of more seasonal overlapping products. We would also love to open a restaurant or café serving Vietnamese specialities in Brisbane after obtaining a permanent visa.
Last published: 7:09 AM, Thursday, 21 October 2021