Monday 4th Sept - Polly

Let's go organic

Celebrating the Soil Association's organic food month.

Championing organic food

September is the month of ‘organic food’, it’s an initiative from the Soil Association to encourage us to eat organic and be more aware of organic farming techniques, so we are going to be highlighting many of the organic products we have in the shop and deli counter throughout September in our social media.

So why should we buy and eat organic?

Organic farming uses fewer pesticides, no artificial additives or preservatives, ensures very high standards of animal welfare and does not allow GM ingredients. Organic certified farms must meet a very strict set of standards, and are inspected annually, to ensure that the standards laid down by European law are upheld.

Paying the price

Often we think that organic produce will be more expensive, however as the cost of using oil based pesticides and chemicals in other farming practices is increasing so the difference in price is decreasing. There is also more to take into account than just the price we pay at the till, the cost of intensive farming is higher on our wildlife, environment and potentially our own health with increased antibiotic resistance being attributed to high levels of antibiotics in the meat we eat.

Why we stock organic

At the Smiddy we like to offer choice, and stock local producers as often as we can, so you will find a range of organic and non-organic produce throughout the shop, butchery and deli counter. Our butcher Stewart knows where all of the meat comes from, and often it is not certified organic, but he will know if it is free range, and reared as closely to organic as possible, don’t be scared to ask!

Where we get our local leaves

Old Leckie Farm is not certified organic, but Alison grows her salad to organic standards, no artificial fertilisers are used, the salad is grown using compost produced on the farm, and ground cover is used to help reduce the dreaded weeds. The only pest control they use are organic certified slug pellets. She grows a mix of 14 different salad leaves including mizuna, pak choi, mibuna, rockets and mustards and they add a pretty twist with edible petals like viola, borage and nasturtiums. The leaves are harvested 3 times per week and delivered on the day they are cut, to ensure the salad has a 7 days shelf life.

This year she has produced 175kg of salad from eight 50m long beds, some outside and some in a polytunnel, their growing season is coming to an end again, but we hope to be stocking their salad in our café again next spring.

Last of the summer salads

To celebrate, we are offering 10% off our delicious home made Smiddy salad dressings throughout September so you can make the most of the remaining season. Just download and present this coupon at the till whilst picking up some Old Leckie salad leaves before they're gone.

We hope that you will be tempted to try some new organic products, or at least take a look at where and how the food you are eating is being produced. We like to try and keep things fresh, local and simple.

Polly.

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