The perfect broccoli
After meeting George Beach last year at Mudwalls Farm, we embarked upon a partnership to have bespoke produce especially for Wellocks’ customers. This is how I see the future with all our growers – planning the crops together and then packing them appropriately.
We had an issue with continuity of purple sprouting broccoli through the winter months, and for our chefs consistency is crucial for planning menus. So working with George and understanding the farm is a great opportunity to address this.
Once again, it is amazing to see how “le terroir” always play a major part in special farms. George’s farm is in a microclimate, sitting in a bowl between the Malvern Hills and the Cotswolds. The hills deflect the worst of the weather, and while they do get freezing temperatures, they are not prone to severe cold. This means that, with a good amount of planning, the crop so far has been constant with fresh product each day being collected.
We’d produced the perfect crop, now it was time to go onto the next part of the plan: packing. All too often this is where UK growers fall down, as they do not pack things correctly and end up with damaged food.
George and his team invested in a BRC accredited packhouse, to make sure this is addressed. The result? Lovely bunched broccoli is now being packed into 500g bunches, directly into our green crates with a liner and iced on top. Cutting out the poly boxes as they are not sustainable for the environment.
It was a pleasure to see how this plan had come to fruition – it’s amazing what working alongside like-minded growers can achieve.
We are now planning more crops together for this year.