Despite heavy clouds and chilly downpours here in Manchester, produce arriving from the fields is singing of British summertime.
We’ve started receiving fresh weekly deliveries from Farmstart in Stockport, a local initiative set up by the Kindling Trust to encourage people into commercial organic growing. The first of it’s kind in the UK, Farmstart provides a plot of land, equipment and ongoing training to give people the opportunity to make a start in farming and learn on the job. They work together, helping one another out and then sell their produce to like-minded organisations, such as the lovely folk at Veg Box People and us here at Unicorn.
We’ve got broad beans, Chinese leaf, new season bunched beetroot and mangetout available from Farmstart and there’s some fantastic quality on offer, the fact that it’s from just down the road only adds to its appeal. We’re proud to be able to support a scheme as innovative and forward thinking as this one and we only hope that it inspires other projects with similar values.
New potatoes are becoming more widely available now, with plenty of varieties to choose from. There’s some fantastic Orla and Colleen from Welsh grower Wyn Edwards in St Davids. Pembrokeshire is a traditional early potato growing region owing to its mild coastal weather. There’s lovely Charlottes from the excellent Jersey Quality Produce in Jersey and Maris Bard and Peer from local stalwart Duncan Gielty. Expect a waxier texture from all varieties at this point in the season, and a creamy, earthy butteriness that we think is unmatched. The humble new spud, we salute you! Caulis and savoys make a welcome return this week as the brassica range begins to return to full strength. Kale lovers take note, we’re expecting new season arrivals next week. UK asparagus however, is drawing to a close. After an early start to the season many of our growers are on their last pick, grab a bunch while you can to savour in this precious, short season….