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locally grown food & Farmers' Markets


Sources of locally produced food in Eynsham

The main source of locally produced food in Eynsham is the Market Garden green grocers' (in Mill Street, next to the Post Office). It sells local and/or organic produce, and an increasing range of deli goods. It is run by Millwoood Gardens, Long Hanborough, who used to run the Saturday stall outside the Emporium.

Also, the Eynsham Country Market (formerly WI Market) is held on Thursday mornings in St Leonard's church Hall (9 am to 10.30 am - but get there early). They sell fruit & veg, home-made cakes, honey, eggs and some locally made crafts. The Market is a co-operative - you can sell as well as buy there. Secretary Pat Atkins 881 677.

During the early part of the summer, Harry's stall sells garden plants outside the Emporium on Saturday mornings.

If you want to grow your own food, you could get an allotment.

Golsby's Butchers buy their meat as locally as they can - in particular they use Woods Farm, Watlington - more about them on their Website. The Natural Bread Company in Mill Street uses local ingredients. The Co-op has a target of 40 lines of locally produced food - but you have to look around for it.

locally grown food nearby

There are Farmers' Markets in Wolvercote (every Sunday, fish stall every 4th Sunday), Witney (the 3rd Wednesday of each month) and Woodstock (the first Saturday of each month).

A couple of miles away from Eynsham is Worton Farm's organic vegetable shop (near Cassington). They used to run the Saturday vegetable stall in Eynsham.

The Oxfordshire Group produces Food Guide 2006, a list of producers and suppliers of locally produced food. And Daily Information publishes a list of Pick Your Own places where you can pick fruit and vegetables.

Allotments UK - part of the RHS's Website - gives a lot of links to Websites about producing and marketing food locally.

The Eynsham green grocers', selling local and/or organic produce, and an increasing range of deli goods.
More on Food Miles

Measuring food by the mile - by Tim Lobstein - easy-to-read explanation with startling examples

Food Miles - the BBC's very helpful explanation

Harry, selling garden plants at Harry's stall . Harry, 15, has decided to raise money for charity by selling bedding plants. For more on Harry's stall, click here.
The Local Food board in the Natural Bread Company's shop.

Food Miles

Our food now travels far more by road tha localfood.html n before. Locally produced vegetables often travel round the country to be washed and packaged before being driven back to supermarkets and shops in the area where they were grown. Hook Norton beer is brewed in Hook Norton (20 miles from Eynsham) - but it is bottled in Stockport (152 miles from Eynsham).

It is estimated that transporting the food each household buys in a year is responsible for 9 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions - more than many other household activities. And a recent study worked out that if supermarkets bought produce from sources within 12 miles, such costs would fall from £2.3bn a year to less than £230m. If shoppers used buses, bicycles or walked, it would save a further £1.1bn (more on this). Another recent study (July/05) suggests that food miles cost Britain has a whole some £9,000 million a year. Each adult travels an average of 135 miles a year to get to supermarkets.

Some supermarkets are responding to this by sourcing and stocking locally grown food (the Co-op in Eynsham does, a bit). Farmers' Markets are also being set up to give local food growers the opportunity to sell to local people, cutting out most of 'food miles' and providing fresher food as a result.

Food miles is a term used to describe the distance travelled by much of the food we eat before it arrives in our shopping baskets. There are several reasons why we might want to avoid well-travelled foodstuffs.

1. Fruit and vegetables from a long way away are unlikely to be as fresh as local produce; and they are routinely coated in chemicals to preserve their 'fresh' appearance and shelf life. Fruit, vegetables and salads are at their nutritional peak when harvested at the ready-to-eat stage. Their vitamin content starts to decline after harvesting and gets lower with every day of transport and storage. Home grown produce is best, because it is freshest, has high nutritive value and tastes wonderful!

2. Imported food may be cheaper than food grown here because it has not been subject to the strict UK controls on production methods, especially the application of chemical pesticides and fertilisers.

3. Fruit is often picked before it is fully ripe to preserve it during transit; as a result it rarely gains its full natural flavour.

4. Economic pressures in developing countries mean that traditional sustainable farming methods are replaced by environmentally destructive intensive agriculture and horticulture, to grow crops for consumption in richer developed countries.

5. The transport of food by road or air in itself contributes to environmental damage.