Helen Browning, Soil Association Chief Executive and author of “Pig”, in Ledbury on 15th April

On Monday April 15th at 7.30, Burgage Hall, you can hear Helen Browning and her partner Tim Finney, previously editor of BBC Radio 4’s Farming and Environment programme, talking about their book “Pig”.


It’s an extraordinary account of 6 months “up close and personal” with a group of sows and their piglets. It’s delightful to get an inside view of these mischievous, competitive, intelligent characters. As you delve into the story, you discover that Eastbrook Farm has not only pigs, but arable land and a dairy herd. Farming organically is formidable task, not for the feint-hearted. The hard graft involved in good husbandry is relentless, and keeping up with ever changing situation in weather (the Beast from the East last March was a particular challenge), politics, and farm economics is an ongoing struggle. Hats off to Helen, Tim and their team in their dedication to sustaining and diversifying this business, against the odds at times.

The book is not just about Pigs. This is only a part of Helen’s life. She is off to London and elsewhere in her official Soil Association role. You read about so many controversial ecological issues as Helen heads off to Farming Conferences, Student Union debates (To Meat or Not to Meat), meeting Defra officials and government Ministers. She even meets Michael Gove, the Environment Minister, down on the farm! This woman has influence in high places, earned through a lifetime of commitment to the quality of our Soil and sustainability of farming practices. Soil, and the worms in it, is vital in storing carbon. Yet much of our soil is degraded and devoid of worms!

Even if you have not read the book, do go along to what will be a fascinating and thought provoking talk. You will find that Helen demonstrates why the welfare of our farm animals – and the way we manage our countryside – is central in current discussions around food, climate change and the environment.

Tickets £5 from Ledbury Library in the Master’s House, St Katherine’s.

Note the opening times for tickets are:

Monday: 9.30am to 4.30pm
Tuesday: 9.30am to 6.00pm
Wednesday: Closed
Thursday: 9.30am to 4.30pm
Friday: 9.30am to 4.30pm
Saturday: 9.30am to 12.30pm
Sunday: Closed

The future for Farming? Talking about Pigs

Helen Browning, author of “Pig – Tales from an organic farm” and Chief Executive Officer of the Soil Association, is an organic livestock and arable farmer.

We are pleased to confirm that Helen with her co-author Tim Finney is coming to Ledbury on Monday 15th April to give a thought-provoking talk at the invitation of Ledbury Library Development Group and Ledbury Food Group. Continue reading “The future for Farming? Talking about Pigs”

7th Ledbury Big Breakfast beats the weather – thanks

Thanks to everyone who took part in this special festival of local food last weekend, and especially this year those who came out on a freezing Friday to enjoy a heart-warming breakfast. Your support for the event is very much appreciated by our local food producers, retailers and caterers.

Anne Crane prepares Middle Eastern Breakfasts at the Organic Cafe DSC03504
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Continue reading “7th Ledbury Big Breakfast beats the weather – thanks”

Full details of the Ledbury Big Breakfast now available

Market House Breakfast Hash 2018

Join us for Ledbury’s “midwinter food festival” over the weekend of Friday 1st, Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd February – the 7th Ledbury Big Breakfast.

19 local venues in and around Ledbury will be taking part on one or more days in this event organised by Ledbury Food Group to celebrate our local food and drink producers and retailers and breakfast.

Specials this year include breakfast pancakes or muffins, hummous on toasted sourdough with tomatoes and spinach, almond croissants, Vegan tofu scramble, Shakshouka eggs, Beef Hash cakes, a Bloody Mary breakfast, Hereford Hop rarebit, Crispy fish and duck egg, Croque Monsieur, Bara Brith (vegan) with Perl Wen and toast with Chuckleberry Jam. Continue reading “Full details of the Ledbury Big Breakfast now available”

A date for your 2019 Diary – the 7th Ledbury Big Breakfast

Full English breakfast , by permission of Juliette Ainsworth

For 2019 the Big Breakfast creeps into February running between Friday 1st February and Sunday 3rd February.

Again food shops, butchers, cafes, and hotels in and around Ledbury will be offering all kinds of treats to celebrate that most important of meals – breakfast featuring good locally produced food and drink.

Ledbury Food Group has asked those taking part to put on something different featuring local produce as well as their normal offerings, and we are expecting a wide range of breakfasts from the lightest breakfast to the heartiest, catering for all tastes. Look out for vegetarian, and vegan offerings too. Continue reading “A date for your 2019 Diary – the 7th Ledbury Big Breakfast”

Non-Plastic Food Bags come to Ledbury

John Davenport, organic vegetable grower at Flights Orchard Farm, Little Marcle has finally acquired a prototype non-plastic food bag. Made in India from corn starch and hemp it will decompose fully in the compost bin. These are the first food-grade fully compostable bags John has sourced. They are suitable for keeping salad and other veg fresh and can also be heat-sealed.

John announced last week that “stronger, clear bags which fit on the packing ‘wicket’ have now arrived. They replace our plastic bags. They are considerably more expensive than plastic ones, but as more growers and retailers commit to such ecological packaging the price will come down.”

John believes he is the first local grower to source these bags and is delighted to be using them in his Vegetable Boxes.