The Countess of Wessex experiences Surrey’s Field to Fork partnerships
PUBLISHED: 16:37 05 October 2020 | UPDATED: 18:23 05 October 2020
Photography by Andy Newbold 2020
Her Royal Highness followed the journey from Coverwood Farm to Surrey Hills Butchers and Squires Food Hall in Frensham
HRH The Countess of Wessex visited Surrey Hills producers and retailers to experience first-hand their ‘field to fork’ collaboration.
The countess’s visit highlighted the importance of local food production, the challenges and opportunities facing farmers and food producers due to Covid-19 and the opportunities to meet the growing interest in supporting and buying locally and sustainably.
Starting at Coverwood Farm near Peaslake, Her Royal Highness met Bill Biddell, Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Surrey and farmer Tim Metson, his family and staff who produce pasture-fed beef. Mr Metson spoke about the key challenges and opportunities faced by farmers as a result of the Covid-19 crisis and other issues facing farmers, including pasture fed meat production.
The countess then officially opened the farm’s new ‘Provenance Cuts’ building, a new facility purpose built to process and butcher locally farmed, sustainable meat. Refreshments were served from the farm’s ‘airstream’ van, The Fillet and Bean, used to support villages with food and drink during the lock-down.
Next up for the the Countess of Wessex was a visit to the Food Hall at Squire’s Garden Centres in Frensham where she was introduced to Wendy Varcoe, executive director of Surrey Hills Enterprises, who explained the collaboration between Surrey Hills Members awarded the Trade Mark Surrey Hills, a Mark of local provenance, quality and sustainability.
Her Royal Highness met Sarah Squires and Martin Breddy, who provided a tour around the food hall showcasing local produce and meeting staff who had worked throughout the lock down to provide food for the local community.
Finally, the countess met Simon Taylor of Surrey Hills Butchers and captain of Team GB for Butchery, who specialises in high-quality, ethical and locally sourced pasture fed meat.
He spoke about the importance of collaboration with local farms such as Coverwood Farm and the need to raise awareness of the importance of sustainable and ethically sourced food.