bday A huge thank you for all the people who turned up on Saturday to join us for the Farm Shop’s 2nd birthday party.  It was a great turnout, with over 250 people enjoying Gavin’s excellent homemade gnocchi, venison burgers, lamb koftas and salads, while the pizza oven was blazing away for the first time this year.

We couldn’t have been more fortunate with the weather which I think put everyone in a generous mood – we managed to raise £432 towards fisherman Pete’s fishing equipment.  Pete will be spending the money on mullet nets which will help generate a steady income as they come inshore at the end of this month.  He catches both thin and thick lipped mullet in fixed nets.  With the proceeds from the mullet, he will buy new pots for catching crab, lobster, cuttlefish and whelks (the latter being exported to Europe and Asia unless you get in there first!).  A huge thank you to Lawrence at the Fat Olives for their generous donation,

Pete_selling_fishThe event epitomized what we are trying to achieve at the farm shop – getting people together to celebrate their local food and producers.  We sell over 150 products from 40 Sussex and Hampshire producers in the shop.  These individuals are dedicated to making the finest tasting food in small batches with care and attention. This simply cannot be replicated by the Supermarkets.  Through buying at Farmers markets and farm shops, you are supporting small farms, artisan producers and fishermen that maintain the landscape and livlihoods that we often take for granted.  However, without that support, you would see the total industrialization of our food – monoculture farms with hedgerows stripped out, factory ships scooping up tonnes of fish at a time,  and the resultant huge supply chain that hides the where, when and how of the food that we put into our mouths three times a day.

Sam and I personally know most of the producers from the shop, along with the welfare, dedication and passion that has gone into their product.  When you buy from the farm shop, you are not just buying food, but you are buying into the landscape of the South Downs and Coast – from lamb to honey, cauliflowers to plaice, venison to cheese.  Long may it continue!