Riverford Wicked Leeks

new year optimism

The resolutions may be broken, but there is still time for a bit of optimism. Apparently the country is officially coming out of the recession. And I hope, with a bit of luck, so is our industry. I was recently asked how the recession had affected farming, which threw me for a while. I think we have been in one for much longer than we care to remember, so when the rest of the country joins us we don’t feel quite so alone. Maybe with a bit of new year faith we can take the lead, get people on our side and convince them that agriculture is imperative in getting food on the table.

While I’m here, I’m going to take this opportunity to congratulate Peter, his team and our vegmen and ladies on their success over Christmas. We had a record number of deliveries, and dare I say, very few problems, despite the weather. Well done everyone!

And so to a bit of farm news. We’re still feeling the after affects of the bitterly cold spell. We now know which water pipes weren’t lagged in time for winter. It never seems quite so important in the summer, when the work is being done, but all of a sudden at -18°C a nagging doubt creeps into your mind (and there’s always a wise old owl hovering about with an ‘I-told-you-so’). The cows have finished auditioning for Dancing on Ice for the time being, with Stella getting a straight 10.

We are now in the closed season with the open farm (or closed farm?). So we have some time to add a few new attractions for 2011 and smarten the place up a bit. No matter how hard we try, there always seems to be a mad rush the week before opening to get things finished, and given the speed at which January has flown by I don’t see this year being any different. We’ll be hosting school visits and plenty of seasonal events through the year, so keep an eye on www.stockleyfarm.co.uk.

John Walton