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The English Apple Man


6th Aug 2021 - 'Bits and pieces'

This week, The English Apple Man looks at a number of 'bits and pieces' - a mixture of stories about fruit and fruit related items.




Weald Group NFU 70th Orchard Competition won by Ian & Nick Overy at Burrs Hill Farm, Brenchley.


Walk of Winning Orchard set for 11th August 6.30pm


EKFS Orchard of the year won by AC Goatham with a Gala Orchard at Shrubbery Farm, Eastry.


Walk of winning orchard set for 17th August @ 5.30pm

Jonathan Blackman


Jonathan is located in the West Midlands and regularly sends me updates on what is happening in orchards in the region.


Today Jonathan 'tweeted'


"As an agronomist, my job is to inspect crops and advise clients on every aspect of growing those crops. This week I have looked at apples, pears, plums, cherries, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, and hops. Our growing season doesn't end until the autumn!


Consultant to the fruit, hops and ornamentals sector specialising in crop protection and nutrition, Jonathan has previous experience in the research sector.


Currently in a Technical Management role Jonathan has previous experience in giving technical support to colleagues in the horticulture sector. He is a member of the DEFRA Pesticide Residues in Food Expert Committee.


Specialties: Consultancy in fruit, hops and ornamental crops. Soil science expertise.




Below: L-R; Hops, Cherries and Blueberries




Supermarkets are preparing for a bumper crop of cherries to hit their shelves after recent hot weather in the UK, the BBC has reported.



Tesco takes additional volume as Britain prepares for crop of over 6,000 tonnes, according to BBC & reported in the Fruit Produce Journal


The season had been put in doubt by a cold and wet spring but high temperatures in July mean growers are enjoying high yields of extra-sweet cherries.


This year's British crop is expected to be double the size of the 2018 harvest at just over 6,000 tonnes.


Lee Turner of Kent-based FGA Farming told the BBC the UK was set for an "abundance of super-sweet cherries", and Tesco is reported to have taken an extra 115 tonnes of the fruit to avoid waste.


Most of the glut has come from Kent, Britain's cherry-growing heartland, which saw high temperatures throughout July, with heat health alerts from Public Health England.


Turner explained that the cold start to the season in April and May meant trees were dormant for longer, allowing them to build up the energy required to produce the super-sweet, high-quality fruit now being harvested.



Taste of Kent Awards


A crop of Driscoll's Zara strawberries grown by Sittingbourne producer Newlands Farm has been crowned Kent's Tastiest Strawberry in this year's Taste of Kent Awards.


The Taste of Kent Awards, organised by Produced in Kent, announced Kent's Tastiest Strawberry, Raspberry and Cherry at the National Cherry and Soft Fruit Show, held at Macknade Food Hall in Faversham on 23 July.


Judged on taste alone by both professionals from the industry and members of the public, the winning varieties and growers were as follows:


Kent's Tastiest Strawberry - Driscoll's Zara variety, grown by R C Boucher & Sons, Newlands Farm, Sittingbourne


Kent's Tastiest Raspberry - Nobility variety, grown by John Myatt & Co, Mockbeggar Farm, Cliffe Woods


Kent's Tastiest Cherry - Penny variety, grown by A C Hulme & Sons, Wingham


From Produced in Kent


Did you know that food production is the single greatest impact humans have on the planet?


From soil depletion and food waste to dizzying greenhouse gas emissions and deforestation, it's clear that our current food system is in urgent need of repair.


The winners in the Food & Drinks category of the first-ever Marie Claire UK Sustainability Awards are industry change-makers and disruptors - brands that recognise amazing foods and drinks shouldn't come at the cost of the planet. Be warned: you might not want to read about them on an empty stomach, though.


Kents' very own Greensand Ridge Distillery was crowned Best Ethical Alcohol Brand.


Greensand Ridge Distillery is the first carbon-neutral distillery in the UK - a remarkable feat, given that energy and water use are two of the hardest things for a small distillery like theirs to mitigate.


Praised by Grace Beverley, MC Sustainability Awards judge and founder and CEO of TALA, for being "a great example of a business model that sets out to disrupt the norm", Greensand Ridge is living proof that even small distilleries can operate sustainably. "Why should distilleries operate unsustainably when they can do so much better, as demonstrated by Greensand Ridge?" asks Beverley.


By using 100% renewable power, the brand aims to be plastic-, chemical- and waste-free in all distillery operations - and working with farmers and food producers to buy quality surplus or by-product produce for its spirits - Greensand Ridge is taking the alcohol industry's sustainability problem into its own hands.




Eating Out


During 'Lockdown' eating out was off limits as we oldies stayed clear, even when legally allowed to venture out.


BUT This week we joined our Son, Daughter in law and Grand Daughter for a wonderful Italian meal at a 'relatively new' Italian Restaurant in Sussex. Deceptively, this former American Diner, located behind a car wash on the A21 between Hurst Green & Flimwell is 'an Oasis of good food, great ambience and superb service.


I have deliberately placed this story at the bottom of my Journal, just to tempt my former colleague and good friend Martin, who claims he always reads my 'blog' just to see where we have been eating lately!!!!!!!!!!


Look at A21 AROMA


I had: LINGUINE WITH LOBSTER AND PRAWNS - (half lobster) white wine, garlic, chilli, cherry tomatoes and parsley followed by: VANILLA POD PANNA COTTA Served with mix berries compote. I still have a blob of Pana Cotta mixed berry compote on what was my clean white shirt!!!!


Well, that is all for this week


Take care


The English Apple Man