Transition Forest Row

A community in transition to a low carbon, sustainable, resilient life.


Food & Land

The Food, land & Farming Group

Location: Forest Row
Members: 37
Latest Activity: Jun 2, 2014

Food Guide

It is a wonderful thing to know where your food comes from. Relationships with those who have produced it, knowledge of the local land and the ability to ask questions of producers add an extra dimension to a meal.

We have aimed in this guide to find producers within roughly a 10 mile radius of Forest Row village. We have included a couple from a few miles further away for special or unusual produce. All are, to the best of our knowledge, traditional-type modest scale farms and producers that care about issues such as animal welfare and give back to their communities in different ways.

Locally grown food helps us cut food miles, support our local economy, and can encourage diversity and good land and animal husbandry. Transition Forest Row celebrates all local producers and all that you may grow in your garden, allotment or window box. After some tough years for British farming, where many farmers have left the industry or retired, there now seems to be a growing recognition of issues around nutrition, sustainability and food security. It’s good to see organisations like the National Trust and the Women’s Institute behind local food and “grow your own” initiatives.

When we started the directory we also aimed to include restaurants and cafés who promoted local food but they proved scarcer on the ground than we had expected (and scarcer than in many other towns and villages). A number of the places listed do have tea shops and restaurants, and many offer other products, events or facilities.

We hope this brief guide may help you on an adventure to source more of your own food more locally. With grateful thanks to all those who have helped us discover other producers, to the farmers and retailers themselves who have given such positive replies, and to Wealden District Council for funds to print this guide through a grant to Transition Forest Row.

Rowena Moore and Juliet Cumpatescu
March 2009

Download a copy here
Food Guide

As a hard copy booklet can only hold limited information and goes out of date, we have also encouraged all producers and retailers listed to load their details onto the local food finder website

Discussion Forum

A - Z Guide to Thrifty Gardening

Started by Mike Grenville Jun 2, 2014. 0 Replies

Food Resilience Day Tuesday 6 December, Lewes

Started by Mike Grenville Nov 25, 2011. 0 Replies

Comment Wall

Comment by Peter Brinch on June 7, 2008 at 9:32
it's elderflower time. we thought it'd be a resilient thing to make our own elderflower cordials, chutnies, and things, as community learning activity.

the time and place needs committing to.

i have tentatively booked the hambro hall for Sunday 15th, 2:00 - 4:00, for a session of group elderflowering. I think what we could do is to bring our pots, and sugars, and steeped elderflowers, and exchange recipes, and have a jamming time.

emerson kitchen is another possibility. we need a vote, or some sort of decision on this.

we'll have to pay about £20 for hambro, I don't know what the picture is like with emerson kitchen.

please respond.

with thanks.

Comment by Mike Grenville on June 26, 2008 at 9:49
Nine Meals from Anarchy

This article by Rosie Boycot in the Daily Mail describes just how reliant we are on an industrial system of food supply that is dependent on oil, and also what might happen if this were to break down.

Nine meals from anarchy - how Britain is facing a very real food cr...
Comment by Mike Grenville on June 30, 2008 at 21:18
Sowing the seeds of urban farming

When I wake up early enough I like to lie in bed dozing and listen to Farming Today. I managed to catch this delightful edition of enthusiastic breed of urban farmers.

Read the BBC report of the programme.
Comment by Mike Grenville on July 7, 2008 at 13:10
There is an interesting article on Rob Hopkins Blog Edible Edges which looked at the food growing potential of urban corners in the town.
Comment by Mike Grenville on August 13, 2008 at 22:46
Eating locally raised food is a growing trend. But who has time to get to the farmer’s market, let alone plant a garden? How about getting someone to grow the vegetables in your own garden for you! Sounds like a business idea for someone!

A Locally Grown Diet With Fuss but No Muss
Comment by Rowena on August 13, 2008 at 23:00
what a wonderful article you have just posted a link to Mike - thanks - love the innovation and how things go around. We stayed at a place near Bath earlier this year and the 2 acre (!) walled garden which the owner had seen as a child full of produce grown by the household's gardeners, is now lent to a local group on a very sucessful 'produce share' basis.
Comment by Mike Grenville on September 30, 2008 at 10:29
A Seed Swap Day is something we could include in the Community Market - This video shows the Brighton one in action

Comment by Mike Grenville on September 30, 2008 at 10:44
An interesting blog:

It is described as "Gilly Smith attempts to recapture her foodie childhood as she spurns the supermarket and takes her daughters Ellie (12) and LouLou (9) deep into the forests, farms and seas of Sussex to find their food. From her column in Eat Sussex Magazine"
Comment by Mike Grenville on October 7, 2008 at 9:39
A food crisis is highly likely in the UK, with price and availability becoming issues that swing the outcome of future elections, according to a report from the thinktank Chatham House.

The UK's food system is unable to cope with rapid changes in supply driven by climate change, rising energy prices and population growth, the report says. Consumers are likely to have to accept a shift from individual preferences to a system in which government and industry have to ensure the food that is sold reflects the wider needs of society. The report, made available in draft to the Guardian, will be published next month.

Hilary Benn, the environment, food and rural affairs secretary, used the first day of a Chatham House conference yesterday on the future of food to announce the creation of a food policy council to advise government on costs and security of supply.

In what appeared to be a shift in policy, he said: "With rising prices and increasing demand across the globe, we can't take our food supply for granted.

"Our supply needs to be reliable and resilient and able to withstand shocks and crises."

In an indication of the government's concern about the effect of food price rises, Benn was asked to update Gordon Brown's national economic council on the UK's food supply yesterday.

The Chatham House study concludes that the British government does not yet fully understand the challenges it faces over food in the 10 years. It identifies serious challenges to world agriculture:

• UK consumers use food at a rate that represents six times more land and sea than is available to them.

• Developed countries face a chronic shortage of migrant workers, leading to the loss of seasonal crops. In Scotland up to a fifth of the soft fruit crop, worth £5.2m, could be lost in 2008.

• The equivalent of 20 Nile rivers move annually from developing to developed countries, but much of agriculture's use of water is unsustainable.

• Modern food production is energy-intensive and vulnerable to oil and gas price rises.

• Rising prices of agricultural commodities have already produced pressure for more protectionism. Russia plans to form a state grain trading company to control up to half of its cereal exports.

• Falling yields due to climate change will inflate food prices further.

• The rapid rise in world population will continue to push up demand.

• Emerging economies such as China and India are shifting to more meat and dairy products. This will cause greater pressure on food and feed prices, and exacerbate environmental and health problems.

"Other countries have already started looking at food in strategic terms. It's about time the UK did the same," said Kate Bailey, who led the research for the project.
Comment by Peter Brinch on October 8, 2008 at 21:31
Dear Friends,

How about making some compost, now is a good time.
As part of TTFR I would like to offer a number of sessions on compost
making starting Saturday 25th Oct at 9.45 - 12.45.
Some interest towards this has already been shown and as more people
will take to grow their own veg or at least some of it the art of
compost making becomes a natural lead up to this. Feeding the soil is a
must and
pre condition to feeding the plants.
In addition to the compost making or rather after the compost making I
would like to offer regular sessions on how to grow your own veg and
what to sow and grow month by month. It would also be interesting to
look at our soils, wealden soil as the foundation of our crops that
grow on it.
The pruning of Fruit trees and berry bushes we could look at during the
winter period.

For the compost making 25th oct I suggest the first session to take
place in Applesham garden on Primrose lane, Forest Row. Bring a flask
of something hot for break time.
Please contact me for further information on tel. 822600

Peter Brinch

I will announce the event on 'What's on in Forest Row'
If you know of friends who would be interested in these sessions please
tell them.

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