7. Nov, 2017

Meeting up at Middle Farm

The best thing about my kind of networking is, working with artisan growers and producers to acquire the finest product for my menu’s and being introduced to a new contact.... Tracey from Bennet & Dunn oils hooked me up with Sam Gray from Middle Farm near Church Stretton. An Artisan smallholding specialised in British Lop pig, a rare bread pig. Driving in my clubman estate down the lanes in the middle of nowhere on a rainy day my tomtom and her instructions got me at her farm. Tea and biscuits first accompanied by her friend Chris, we talked a long time over the great the good, our past London days, present food culture and demands and future supply, her passionate love for doing the right artisan way of running her smallholding makes me feel happy and humble to be acquainted. We went for a walk after our cuppa and visited one of her barns were this morning a new litter of 12 piglets were born. Only a few hours old, the sow, Charlotte, was tired but was content feeding her piglets. To see these little beauties makes you wonder how lucky I am to witness this sight of pure natural bonding in a free and happy environment. It brought me back to my youth, when every farmer in my homeland had a few pigs, hens, sheep and other 'now postcard' beauties. It also makes me wonder why did all change for the worse, the non caring of animal welfare...like it is all a number game these days...Not to go to deep into this.... I am very proud and happy to have met Sam who, together with lots of other artisan producers, is making a difference in Shropshire and set an example how things can and should be done, making it happen where animals in their natural habitat living their life, to eventually produce the finest rare bread pig meat there is. I certainly look forward working with Sam from 2018 onwards to make a difference for all.

My visit with Sam came to an end, time to move on and drive to Hilton near W'hampton to visit Tracey and Rupert from Bennet and Dunn at their rapeseed oil production site, a visit long overdue. We are working closely together for a while now and make natural flavoured rapeseed oil work, this acquires time and patience, the knowledge of the grower, the scientist Chef and the sales team to make it all work. We are happy with our new ideas created today and soon start developing those to hopefully launch early next year....good times ahead....working with people for people. Watch this space