From cattle to quinoa, Bath is filled with farms that create a beautiful landscape, as well as provide incredible quality culinary ingredients.
Just three miles west of Bath’s fashionable centre lies Newton Farm, a family-run livestock and arable farm with a string of awards to its name. The farm’s 450-strong herd of South Devon, Angus and Hereford cattle mostly spends time roaming the rolling parkland of Newton Estate in the pretty thatched village of Newton St Loe. Reared on a low-input grass-based diet, these animals play an important part in upholding the farm’s agri-environmental status as a Higher Level Stewardship (HLS) farm. Determined to produce ‘food from field to fork’ and ‘bridge the gap between the farmer and the consumer’, Newton Farm prepares its own meat and sells it in the farm’s shop and the bustling café that inhabits its former milking parlour.
Because quinoa originated in the world’s longest mountain range—the Andes—it may come as a surprise that the wheat-free alternative hailed for its health benefits is thriving on English soil. Going against the grain, Bath Farm Girls in the small Saxon village of Corston (west of Bath) is the first farm to have successfully harvested a crop of the red variety in the UK. Passionate about pesticide-free quinoa production, the farm has flourished since its inception in 2013 and now sells nutritious and chemical-free quinoa to the local community and companies like The British Quinoa Company, Pret A Manger and Waitrose, to name a few.
Bath Farm Girls, Corston Field Farm, Corston, Bath BA2 9EZ, UK, +44 7933 832523
Located in the village of Rode and only a short distance from Bath, Fussels Fine Foods has been producing rapeseed oil since the 1980s. It all started in a converted pigsty with a cold press and some bottling equipment. Since then, the business has branched out to a bigger building with new pressing facilities, a state-of-the-art filtration system and a demonstration kitchen. From pressing the seeds, cleaning, bottling and labelling the oil to using it in the kitchen, these third-generation farmers welcome you to discover the inherent benefits of cold pressed rapeseed oil—low in saturated fat and high in essential fatty acids—in their deep-yellow world.
Fussels Fine Foods, Parkgate Lane, Frome BA11 6AA, UK, +44 1373 831286
From garlic, nettles and fungi to lemon balm, elderflower and mint, Bath abounds with wild food throughout the year. But, distinguishing the good from the bad poses challenges for novice foragers. Vale House Kitchen in the village of Timsbury, 13 kilometres (eight miles) southwest of Bath, will bring out your inner hunter gatherer and help you to identify what’s what. The kitchen offers courses on the ancient art of wild food foraging that teach you about the importance of landscape, habitats and tree and plant species. The school’s expert foragers and ecologists also cover safety and legislation, empowering you to safely forage with the knowledge that you’re gathering the right food and not negatively impacting the environment.
Vale House, Loves Hill, Timsbury BA2 0EU, UK, +44 1761 470401