I Am Angry

Have you ever felt you just do not fit in, you seem to be going against the grain, that you are different?

This thought struck me as I spotted a lonely white cabbage amidst a sea of black kale today.  Not too dissimilar to ourselves I thought, an outsider, not quite in the right place, definitely not fitting in, being different and not really caring what others think.

Of course, the cabbage is just being a cabbage (and probably not thinking a whole lot about anything, it would be wrong of me to suggest otherwise!), but it started me thinking.  

I continued on my crop walk through the fields and I spotted the most amazing intricate display of spider’s webs on one of our kale plants, it seemed that nature was vibrating and shouting look, look at me I’m doing my thing and I am beautiful.

Nature just works. And we have so little idea of how this amazing and complex interwoven web of life works.  All of the natural world links together and works, it just does, and it is truly amazing. Nothing is forced, it all flows, a natural cycle of life and death, always moving always flowing.

Who are we to impose our will and ideas on this beautiful planet without due consideration for all that we share it with? Who are we to extract all that we can by processes that are clearly exploitive, driven by profit? The price is simply too great and is not acceptable.

When will we realise that our habit of constant and increasing consumption are doing irrevocable damage? That our actions are taking away something beautiful, something we all need to be sane in an increasing insane world and only when it is gone will we notice and then sadly it will be too late.

Some days I get so angry, and I am past caring what people think (I guess age brings certain benefits.) But I am angry, and you too have a right to be angry too with the way we as human beings exploit this gentle and strong and beautiful energy that is our Earth.

We cannot compromise in our decisions, and to an extent this is why, even though I am inextricably linked to the world of business, I don’t have to like it.  Practising mindful, conscious, ethical business in a world that is driven by excessive consumption and low prices is difficult, but it is possible, and we do it. 

We have always committed to growing food in the most sustainable manner possible and only sourcing food from the most sustainable suppliers and paying them fairly.  We have always maintained that this is the only way to farm and to do business.

Like the cabbage in the field of kale we are most definitely outsiders, most definitely the underdog. We have a long way to go, we don’t always get it right, we struggle with the challenges but every day we try a little harder and face the challenges and pain head on.

So, for the sake of our planet let’s get a little angry together and make some changes.

Thanks for joining our movement, let us be the channel for your energy.

Kenneth

Let us deliver sustainably grown and sourced fruits, vegetables and groceries to your door if you feel angry too.

There’s No Planet B

Our story this year has many parts to it. The planning and advice, the hard work and organisation of the farm team. The fertility and soil management, the weather and the birds and the bees have all played their part.

Our amazing team of packers, rising each morning sometimes at 4am to get to work at 5am to start packing your orders. Finally, having you our customers willing to supporting our farm and a whole bunch of good luck has got us through to another autumn, my 17th year growing vegetables and our 15th year in business.

Growing vegetables commercially is a tough endeavour and in the stony wet land of the West of Ireland it is particularly challenging.  

The skill and art of growing our food is so important and we need to preserve this knowledge. It is invigorating to see so many small-scale growers embrace sustainable growing.

Yet, many commercial growers are struggling, the work is too hard, the price for their produce is too low, the seasons (due to climate change) are unpredictable, and planning for a market that is ever changing and is sometimes 12 months in the future makes it a precarious undertaking indeed.

As with everything and it is no different in our food system, decisions based purely on financial gain with no regard for our environment are causing devastation to our planet.  

It is much easier for a large supermarket buyer to import cheap produce, grown abroad where labour is inexpensive and where very often the working conditions are poor, and the attention paid to biodiversity is scant than buy more expensive IRISH grown crops.  

I am glad we have you our customers and that we do not need to knock on supermarket doors to sell our produce.

Our harvest is overflowing, now we have parsnips, carrots, swedes, cabbage, leeks, celery, pumpkin, kale and Brussels sprouts, the last of the broccoli and the soon to start purple sprouting broccoli and the first time in 10 years we will have celeriac.

I think you might taste the flavour in your in your boxes, tell us if you do! You will also notice the size of all our crops, the warm September and a soil temperature that is 5C above normal means growth has continued well past when it should have slowed leading to bigger produce. 

The days are closing in now and the weather is wet and it should be cool, but as I write this, we have temperatures here in Galway of 17C and it is 8pm, is this climate change in action right here on our doorstep? 

Our promise is simple, “When you get a box from us you do not need to think about whether you are choosing sustainably, we promise you are”. 

Your support for us means our farm survives and thrives, our people stay in jobs, and we get to mind our little patch of land here in the West of Ireland sustainably.

Thank you

Kenneth