The Festival of British Fruit joined forces with Sainsbury’s and The Barnyard, at Gore Farm, Upchurch, to celebrate National Apple Day. The event took place over the weekend on Saturday 19th and Sunday 20th October.
The Barnyard, Gore Farm owned by AC Goatham and Son, hosted the two day celebration. The working fruit farm owned by the UK’s largest top fruit grower opened its doors to visitors who were able to learn about the modern, innovative methods employed by today’s industry.
Visitors over the weekend were able to sample and buy competition fruit from the previously held National Fruit Show the industry event for commercial fruit growers. The competition fruit was transported from the County Showground and re-staged for the public.
The Bramley Campaign were on hand to promote the unique qualities of Britain’s most distinctive culinary apple and served free tastings of Bramley Apple pies from Kent based Fourayes, the UK’s largest processor of fruit. The company based in Sittingbourne were showing visitors their new range of jams with a hint of herbs and spices and a hint of blossom. Visitors were also able to sample apple juice from The Barnyard ‘Juice Bar’. From classic Bramley and Cox mixes to the new Zari apple.
The Barnyard Gore Farm has a year round, restaurant, garden centre and farm shop, and visitors to the National Apple Day event were able to buy local produce and plants whilst their restaurant served a selection of apple treats.
The remaining fruit not sold over the weekend was donated to FareShare, a National UK charity that fights hunger and food waste by redistributing surplus food to over 1,000 charities across the UK, such as breakfast clubs, women’s refruge and luncheon clubs for the elderly. FareShare ensures no good food should go to waste and was delighted with the donation. In 2012/13, the food redistributed FareShare helped to contribute towards 10 million meals. The support from companies like Sainsbury’s ensure that, on average 51,000 people a day, are accessing good food through FareShare.
Sarah Calcutt, said: “It is just wonderful that we are able to give back to the communities that struggle with food poverty. The National Fruit Show this year has worked very closely with Sainsbury’s and we were delighted that there was fruit left after the weekend to be able to donate to one of the causes they support. I am sure all the growers whom participated in the National Fruit Show are proud to donate their fruit to such a worthy charity.”
All the winning fruit being passed on to the charity, is the best the country has to offer with all fruits being redistributed by FareShare scoring over 90 out of a 100 during the competition.
Catherine Burglass, FareShare London Development Manager, says: “Thank you so much for the donation of apples, which will be redistributed to our member charities in London at a time of real need. We work hard to ensure that we provide these charities with good nutritious food and these apples will be much appreciated by the thousands of people that benefit from our service, from children in breakfast clubs, elderly people in luncheon clubs and women fleeing domestic violence.”
The strong ethics of Sainsbury’s ensures that none of their food goes to waste, with a guarantee that none of their food waste goes to landfills. All food is donated to charities like FareShare, and if unsuitable for human consumption is turned into energy through anaerobic digestion. Working with a network of hundreds of food charities, Sainsburys also ran the ‘Million Meal Appeal’ with FareShare in 2011 and 2012, a national food drive over three days, which provided 3.2 million meals for the charities supported by FareShare.
The consistent support from Sainsbury’s and the fruit industry has helped tackle the food poverty issue and ensuring that no good food should go to waste thanks to initiatives like this.
For more information and images from the National Apple Day weekend, please contact Sarah Calcutt via the Show Office.