Today has been Open Farm Sunday, where members of the public get the opportunity to visit a farm that is part of the scheme to learn about where their food comes from.
I could have been at either Edibles, which I would have visited as part of the PDC, or Old Sleningford Farm, which I would ordinarily have gone to for the volunteer workday. However, I chose to stay close to home.
Green Field Produce may operate in a different way from an organic or permaculture farm but that is not to say it lacks merit. After all, it is producing food. And it is interesting to compare how they might do it in comparison with the aforementioned.
One of the differences is the amount of machinery.
Combine harvesters are a no-no in certain settings. The one pictured above has wheels which have been designed to reduce compaction. According to the farmer, summers are getting shorter, so it isn’t always possible to get the wheat in before the soil becomes too wet for such heavy machinery.
Being in the Rhubarb Triangle, it is fitting there was a rather large amount of the stuff at this farm. Sadly, even nearby supermarkets have been buying it from other countries rather than from local farms. And the lot we saw beng picked was going to Belgium to be frozen because there were no longer any facilities here to do so.
On the other hand, the farm sells its own grass-fed animals. I had wondered if the fields of grass had been left fallow to rest the soil but it turns out the grass is purposely grown to feed the animals in winter.
Also, by law, the edges of fields must remain unfertilised, so that they can be a wildlife haven. Maybe more hedgerows could be put back in but it would seem that some things are going in the right direction.