Back in 2012, thanks to the growing success of Farrington’s Mellow Yellow we started using rapeseed from a second farm, working with our neighbours, in addition to the seed we grow on our own farm. See my blog; “Mellow Yellow Popularity Grows” April 10, 2012. Now, we have added a third farmer to the list.
The Bletsoe and Farrington families have been neighbouring farmers since at least my great grandfather’s day. Like most farming neighbours, we have developed strong friendships over those generations, built on trust and the odd bit of occasional light hearted banter.
Emma Bletsoe has, for several years, used our rapemeal, produced as the by-product from pressing the oil out of the seed, to feed her cattle. Then a couple of years ago, Emma and I were chatting at a local gathering, when the conversation moved on to her rapeseed crop and my future needs for more LEAF Marque rapeseed. Emma thought that as well as buying the meal off us, perhaps she could also sell us her seed in the first place. Emma and her guys on the farm, Garry and Stuart, have worked hard to meet the rigorous LEAF Marque standards, which they passed with flying colours.
Now we purchase seed from Emma, which ensures I have a fully traceable, accredited supplier; while Emma gets a little bonus and the odd bottle of oil for the extra work required. Then once we have pressed the seed to produce our Mellow Yellow, Gary or Sturt arrive with their tractor and trailer to collect the rapemeal, which they use to make a healthy and, again fully traceable, meal for their cattle. This is something the cows particularly like in the cold winter months when they are kept in warm straw-bedded barns, as opposed to eating fresh grass in the fields during the summer.
This is a prime example of neighbouring farmers working well together, making happy farmers, happy cows and most importantly, the best quality, delicious Farrington’s Mellow Yellow that you can trust every time.