Formed in the 1940’s, the Ashton Co-operative Society Limited has an enviable record of excellence and innovation in controlled atmosphere cold storage of apples, and more recently wine storage.
Nowadays, the group has expanded to offer the Adelaide Hills:
- Rural Supplies and hardware through Ashton Thrifty-Link
- Specialist irrigation and plumbing through Adelaide Hills Irrigation, based at our Lenswood premises
- LPG supply and gas-fitting, and specialist industrial and food-grade gasses through Lenswood Gas.
Peter Larner – General Manager
Peter is responsible for the management of the group comprising the Ashton and Lenswood sites in the Adelaide Hills. Rural supplies, hardware and cold storage are based at Ashton, and Lenswood Gas and Hills Irrigation & Plumbing at Lenswood.
Peter’s background for many years was in senior operational management of large South Australian businesses operating nationally and internationally. He has operated his own companies and consulted to various organisations in interim management, business improvement, strategy, and business development.
At Ashton Co-op he enjoys being “hands-on” and loves exceeding customer expectations.
Kevin Fechner: Merchandise Manager
After a successful career in both public and private enterprise, Kevin has brought new ideas and enthusiasm to the Thrifty Link store. His knowledge of local Adelaide Hills conditions and practical background ensure he is able to connect with customers, and supply the right rural supplies and hardware. He loves nothing better than a “chat” with customers regarding their needs and then ensuring he and his team fulfill those requirements.
Peter Parfitt: Storage Manager
Peter has been with Ashton Co-op for over 17 years and is responsible for the safe and efficient running of the cold storage facility. His knowledge of fruit storage and the potential problems associated with fruit handling is second to none, ensuring that fruit stored at the Co-op is dispatched in first grade marketable condition, irrespective of the length of time spent in storage. His attention to detail in regards to wine storage and general logistics, with support from his assistant Greg, makes life easier for all customers who use the storage facility.
Anne Colbey: Admin Manager
Anne is responsible for all administration tasks associated with the Ashton Co-op group, including accounts, payroll, IT administration and general customer service. She has over 12 years experience with the Co-op, making her a valuable source of information regarding the operations of the business.
Lyn Fechner: Lenswood Office Manager
Lyn runs the Lenswood office operations, responsible for Lenswood Gas gas deliveries, and Hills Irrigation irrigation and plumbing enquiries and customer service and general administration. Lyn started with Lenswood business prior to its’ purchase by Ashton Co-op, and has nearly 20 years’ experience in this Adelaide Hills location. Being a well known “local” she is the driver of the customer experience at Lenswood.
Board of Directors
Ashton Co-op is governed by a Board of Directors who are (generally) shareholders and actively engaged in primary production in the Adelaide Hills. They are elected by the shareholders and serve for 2 year terms. They meet at least monthly to review the progress of the Co-op towards its budgets, targets and plans and to receive reports on the financial position of the business. They advise, formulate and agree on strategies to be implemented to ensure the Co-op progresses and remains a viable provider of services to its shareholders, particularly in the provision of cold storage for apples, and wine storage.
Chairman: Greg Cramond
Greg has served on the board as a director for many years prior to taking on the role of Chairman. He is a well known local landholder with a family background in fruit growing and many years of experience in both the fruit industry and business operations.
- Brendon Keys (BK Wines),
- Carey Schultz,
- Joe Ceravolo (Ceravolo Orchards),
- Malcolm Parker (AF Parker & sons)
- Matthew Flavell (Flavell fruit),
- Noel Mason