20th April 2019

#Food & Drink

Grow with us this spring

20th April 2019

#Food & Drink

We’re inviting you to grow with us and celebrate as we go from plant to plate and shine a light on the unsung heroes of the fruit and veggie world. Keep your eyes peeled and taste buds primed for some incredible ingredients, delectable dishes and plenty of seasonal produce.

What makes our veg so special?

Well, when you know you grow! From the delights of our heritage breed Nutbourne tomatoes, hand grown by Jenny and Gary in the Chichester countryside, a family run business, which has been producing tomatoes for over 40 years, to the wild garlic, nettles and foraged foods of the Norfolk broads by Martin Denny, all the way to our micro herb growers Alan and Sue Miller who swapped 20 years of cheffing to grow their own ingredients.

Martin Denny: Working sustainably,  Martin has been foraging for over 20 years, taking only the leaves or parts of the plant he needs and leaving nothing uprooted.  There are no pesticides, no chemicals and no added extras the whole process from plant to plate is about as natural as it gets and with no machinery or packing houses he is able to dramatically reduce his carbon footprint.

“When I was a child I spent a lot of time with my grandfather this was in the late 60s/early 70s my grandparents lived on the bank’s of the river Ouse where lots of edible plants grew on the marshey bit of the estuary and he taught me all about them, although we didn’t eat much of them but he did use them as ferterlizer on the veg patch. Lots of people of his generation had knowledge of these plants however it was lost as so many were killed in the first world (luckily he survived ). As I got older other things took my interest so it wasn’t until I was into my thirties that I started to wonder about these plants again and it all came flooding back to me as I looked for plants and mushrooms as I knew where they grew and they were all still there as time moved on it slowly became my job ( I’m now in my late 50s) and as interest grew in it it helped me to create a thriving business albeit with many changes over the years” 

Sue and Allan:  If you’ve ever eaten an edible flower when dining out the chances are it’s been grown by the blooming wonderful Sue and Allan of Nurtured in Norfolk. Having worked as chefs for over 25 years Allan and Sue spotted a gap in the market for consistent, quality micro herbs. Beginning in their backyard growing herbs for a restaurant they were working in they soon had other outlets knocking on their door after some hard graft and a leap of faith they launched Nurtured in Norfolk.

9 years later it’s clear that a comprehensive understanding of both product and the demand, has been key to Nurtured in Norfolk’s continued success. Allan and Sues culinary background has without doubt been a key driving force and their unfaltering decision not to compromise quality over quantity continues to see their produce in high demand.

Allan and Sue’s crops are all soil grown and whilst this does present its own issues, it ensures that all their produce is packed with as much natural flavour as possible. Pesticide free and hand picked you’ll be hard pushed to find produce elsewhere that matches them both on taste and quality.

Gary and Jenny: You say tomato, we say Nutbourne! With over 40 years experience it’s safe to say that when it comes to tomato farming Gary and Jenny are top of their game.  Specialising in heritage breed tomatoes, Gary and family have grown over 28 varieties of tomatoes this year with a passion and dedication that is unquestionable. Whilst Jenny runs the pack house ensuring all tomatoes meet her unwavering standards, Gary manages the day to day running of the farm he also insists on 3 days a week, delivering the tomatoes from farm to kitchen, ensuring that they arrive in same premium condition as when they left. Nutbourne tomatoes are grown completely pesticide free, they’re hand picked, hand packed and even have their own team of bees to pollinate them.