One evening in 2009 a handful of local people gathered around a kitchen table to join Luke Hasell (farmer in the Chew Valley) and Phil Haughton (founder of the Better Food Company) in their ambition to create a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) project on Luke’s family land. The aim was an open farm, producing local food, involving lots of people, and caring for the natural world – an antidote to the harmful industrialised, global food system.
In the beginning we had a blank field – no tracks, trees, irrigation, polytunnels or built structures and about 7 staff. The field team took their breaks under a tarpaulin, admin was done from a cabin two miles away, and boxes were packed in a dark, old warehouse down the road.
Since then, we have developed the site, built the team (now around 30 paid staff), learned about the land, expanded the box scheme and created a very special place where over a thousand people each year enjoy learning and working on the land.