Updated: Jan 10
What an exciting month we have in store, and not just because of the visit from the big man himself! Vegetables are really coming into their own and plenty of festive fruit is readily available, snuggle down in the warm and enjoy all this season has to offer!
The harvested Gala apples are still available in abundance and tasting sensational, as are our newly acquired Rubens from Hares Farm in Chilham. Local Conference and Comice pears are looking wonderful, with plentiful supply! We have really enjoyed hosting our apple tasting pop up events at various locations this season, the specialty varieties from Brogdale have also been hugely popular, as you may have seen on our social media. Unfortunately these speciality varieties are now finished for another year, but we look forward to seeing them again.
We cannot stress to you enough the importance of ordering your prepared festive vegetables by 3pm throughout December for next day delivery. As always, pre orders are massively encouraged, do not hesitate to place them with plenty of time to spare. As well as restrictions on general prepared vegetables over the festive period, our prep sprouts are day 1 ordering for day 3 delivery of machine prepared, otherwise hand cut are very expensive!
Cauliflowers are proving to be challenging due to the recent wet weather, Trevor is struggling to get onto the fields to cut and his tractors are getting stuck! As such, we do anticipate some shortages in the coming weeks with local supply. His sprouts and sprout tops which are undeniably the star of the show, are thankfully unaffected as they are handpicked, so aren’t as disturbed by the weather.
Jerusalem artichokes from Green Lane Farm will be available from now through to Christmas, as are their Cavello Nero and Russian Kale. All other cabbages are good, especially Savoys, which are always a delight to offer. Sadly, their beautiful purple sprouting broccoli has been affected by the weather also, with supply not being expected again until January.
Our baby veg is proving to be massively popular, but do bear in mind these are day 1 for day 3 delivery so we can cut to order. Supplied by Nurtured In Norfolk, along our herbs, micros and edible flowers, we do hope you managed to catch our takeover with them on their Instagram page in November where we showcased not only their sensational products, but also your creative masterpieces and how you use their produce!
Roots are all proving to be hardy and prolific with no predicted issues, as are red and brown onions from Suffolk.
We are informed that prices will increase once again due to wet weather and the inability to lift the end of the crop as they have rotted in ground. Our farmers have about 20% less yield than they predicted 6 weeks ago, which is a real shame for all concerned.
Our Provenance chippers are definitely our roasting potato of choice and will be an amazing addition to your festive dinners! We are proud to say are locally farmed from Mongeham Farm, Deal.
The Spanish season for salad is now in full flow, with all leaves now coming from our friends, as expected. Their heritage tomatoes are looking and tasting superb!
Yet another victim of mother nature is broccoli, which is being sourced from Spain. The wet weather is affecting both availability and the product itself with them being slightly smaller than you are used to. We have a longstanding contract with our supplier which means supply should not affect us directly thankfully, we would suggest that you order by weight rather than number to ensure you receive the correct volume required.
We’ve also started to receive Leafy Clementine’s from our Spanish grower, a recognisable and staple fruit ideal for Christmas! Lemons are looking good with no problems to report.
Another festive fruit available in abundance are Cranberries from the US, although the same cannot be said about avocados. The shortage continues and won’t change as demand outstrips supply. The Californian season is coming through, but this is tiny compared to the central and South American crop.
Grapes are moving over to the Southern Hemisphere, Peru to be precise, as are blueberries.
Strawberries are being problematic briefly, with ridiculously high prices coming back as we move over to Egyptian and Spanish. We have taken the decision to delist them for the time being, but only for another week or two. Nothing beats a Kentish strawberry, but the Egyptian and Spanish will be much better than Dutch glasshouse.
Raspberries are now being sourced from Mexico as predicted, and we can happily foresee no availability issues or sharp pricing increases, along with pineapples from Costa Rico.
Brazilian melons remain in good supply with stable pricing we are pleased to report.
An interesting fact we have read this week and well worth remembering with all the Brexit talk, is that as a country, we are 54% self sufficient in vegetables, but only 17% in fruit. Should we be challenging our fruit tastes or planting different products?
Please see below our operating hours over Christmas and New Year! We thank you for your continued custom, and we all wish you a very happy Christmas and a prosperous new year.