In late June, Josiah and Nick took a brief (but long) road trip to visit friends, growers and customers in the far South West of England, taking a few photos along the way..
To start at the end, Trenow Fields is a haven of regenerative farming on Mount's Bay in Cornwall, where Tim, Philip, Liz and Caroline are growing a diverse range of herbs, flowers, legumes, grains & veg on historic fields in organic conversion.
Located at the far end of St Michael's ley line, which also passes by Hodmedod's Bean Store in Suffolk, the fields at Trenow look out from Penwith to St Michael's Mount. A quartet of rare surviving elms stand proud in one of the hedgerows.
Heading back East from Trenow we called in to see Julie Bailey of Apple Natural, who produces her superb range of slow dried apple shreds from the fruits of her organic orchard of Cornish heritage apples and other local fruits.
Julie works from an immaculately kitted out converted Dartmoor Rangers' cabin in the corner of the farm yard.
Our journey had started the previous day with a wet but inspiring walk around the rain-soaked fields of Gothelney Farm in Somerset, with farmer Fred and baker Rosy. Fred has tended Gothelney for 10 years, transitioning the farm to agroecology through diverse cropping, minimising inputs, fostering soil health, working at a human scale, building long-term relationships and collaborations.
We travelled on to Devon, calling in to see Andrew and his mill at the Fresh Flour Company on our way to meet Bob at the Apricot Centre and walk the fields of YQ Population Wheat and other cereals with John at the Dartington Estate.
We compared mills with the Almond Thief bakery in Totnes and after a refreshing night at Geetie Singh's exceptionally welcoming and comfortable Bull Inn in Totnes, caught up with Guy, Rob and Charlotte at Riverford Organic Farmers before heading on to deepest Cornwall.
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A few years ago we were looking for a sweetner for some granola recipes, something UK produced and minimally processed. When our apple syrup order from Liberty Fields arrived we knew we were onto something special - we quickly added them to our short list of brilliant Guest Producers
We've launched ten pulses and grains from British farms as part of Holland & Barrett's transformation of their food range, available in their stores across the UK. It's a fantastic opportunity to make British-grown fava beans, carlin peas and quinoa, along with other pulses and cereals, available more widely and to support more diverse farming.
Down a warren of country lanes, not far from the Tamar Valley in Cornwall, is Julie Bailey's orchard Lower Trelabe, where she grows historic local varieties of apple and makes her delicious Apple Natural apple shreds, traditional fruit leathers that contain only the natural plant sugars.