To celebrate Organic September last week I had the real pleasure of visiting Wyld Wood Cider https://www.instagram.com/wyldwoodcider/ beautiful organic apple orchard in the enchanting British countryside.
Westons has produced organic cider for over 15 years and Wyld Wood is a brand that comes straight from the heart of the company’s values.They have converted 10 acres of their land into an environmentally friendly Wetlands Waste Management System, where all of their waste water is processed naturally through it creating a haven for wildlife. The added bonus is that the purified water is then pumped back onto their orchards, substantially
increasing the yields. Westons Cider’s organic orchards are sustainably managed to preserve and enhance nature until the apples and pears are ready for picking. The company nurtures its old orchards and has been planting new organic orchards, working with the Soil Association and the Wildlife Trusts.
We started the day with a super interesting talk from the Soil Association about what organic actually means, organic farming and the benefits or purchasing organic food. If you have been following me for a while you probably will know by now how passionate I am about organic agriculture and this talk inspired me even more about buying organic when possible.
“Food as it should be”. Organic means fewer pesticide, no artificial additives or preservatives, the highest standards of animal welfare and no GM ingredients.
There are endless reasons to choose organic but if I can I here are few bullet points to make it easier:
1- Knowing what’s in your food- choosing organic is an easy way to avoid pesticides, herbicides, additives and preservatives.
2-Better for the animals- organic farming has the highest standard of animal welfare. Animal are raised in conditions to suit their natural behaviour. They are also raised without the routine, preventive use of antibiotics.
3- Better for the wildlife-organic farmers don’t use herbicides at all, this is good news for the birds and bees that live on organic farms.
4-Better for the planet- If all the UK farmland was converted to organic farming at least 1.3 millions tonnes of carbon would be taken up by the soil each year- the equivalent of taking nearly 1 millions cars off the road.
Do I buy everything organic? No, unfortunately I can’t afford to buy every single item on my shopping list organic but I am always try my best to buy whatever I can afford organic. I particularly enjoy shopping at my local farmers market to buy most of my vegetables. Not only I think the quality is much better than supermarkets but I also love supporting small producers.
After the talk we had a delicious (organic) lunch packed with local and seasonal produces. We then got taken to a very interesting tour around the facilities where Wyld Wood Cider is made. Since I am not the most knowledgeable person when it comes to cider it was very interesting for me to see the whole process from apple to bottle.
Finally we got taken on a tractor ride by Harry Weston himself (!) to the most beautiful apple orchards I have ever seen. Rows and rows of organic apple trees, surrounded by luscious green fields.
I was so sad when it was time to leave, I really wish I had more time to enjoy the stunning surroundings. But I am so grateful to have had the chance to learn more about cider making and organic agriculture. It definitely instilled in me even more a huge passion for organic agriculture and for sustainability when it comes to the food I am consuming every day. We can all play a big role in supporting what “food really should be” by purchasing organic produce whenever is possible.
We all vote with our pound and I am even more conscious now of what I want to support with my money.
If you want to find out more about how to get involved in Organic September click on the link below: