Try something new!

Our producers have some delicious new products to try this month.  Moreton Mushrooms have added easy to serve Garlic Chestnut Mushrooms to their range which already includes a fabulous soup and pate.  The flavour of their mushrooms really is a cut above the rest.

The Veggie Option have extended their range of gluten-free ready meals – why not try Cheese and Parsnip Roulade, Cheese and Veg Roast (my personal favourite) or the brand new Courgette and Feta Frittata.

Woodhouse Farm have introduced a new pork pie – pork and pickle with a cheese topping – either Red Leicester or Mature Cheddar.  I sampled a slice on Saturday and bought one to take home.  It was lovely!



Pershore’s Plum Festival wins award for Sketts

Pershore’s August Bank Holiday Plum Festival is going from strength to strength and offers entertainment for all the family.  The small, historic Worcestershire town of Pershore was proudly represented at an awards ceremony in Birmingham when Sketts collected the trophy for “Best Provider of Speciality Markets”.  The award was presented by BBC Midlands news man, Nick Owen.

Senior Partner, Mark Skett, is keen to acknowledge that the award reflects not just the success of the market itself but the productive partnership that has developed, to great mutual benefit, with the festival organizers, town traders and other volunteers all with the backing of Wychavon’s tourism office.   He said, “We have over 50 traders attending including specialist food stalls with plums firmly centre stage.  If it involves a plum, then it can be found at this event.  We’re very proud that Sketts’ Original Farmers’ Markets, with our fully accredited stall holders, is at the heart of crowd-pleasing events such as this.”

We’re all looking forward to Pershore’s Plum Festival 2011.


Are farmers’ markets expensive?

I’ve read a few comments lately in newspapers and magazines about farmers’ markets being expensive.  I shopped at Stratford upon Avon farmers’ market yesterday and bought mainly fresh meat and vegetables – I thought I would do a bit of a check to see how prices compared with the supermarket.  Exact comparisons are difficult but the general pattern was revealing – here are some examples:

stewing/casserole diced beef  – I paid £6.22 per kilo.  Tesco have it for £7.96 per kilo

minced beef steak – I paid £5.50 per kilo.  Tesco have it for £5.74 per kilo

free range skinless chicken breasts – I paid £12.87 per kilo.  Tesco have them for £13.98 per kilo

pre-packed sliced ham – I paid £15 per kilo.  Tesco have similar for £22.10 per kilo

It looks like good value to me at the farmers’ market!

Tesco prices from their website – 6/2/2011

Malthouse Produce wins FARMA Stallholder of the Year Award 2011

The FARMA Awards recognize excellence across the farm retail sector.  This year they introduced a new award for Stallholder of the Year to commend product, presentation and customer service alongside commitment to the farmers’ market concept.  Brothers Chris and Mike Wilkes are the farmers and growers behind Malthouse Produce.  You’ll find them every weekend and often during the week as well at farmers’ markets in the West Midlands region.

Their stall is always a colourful and professional presentation of the vegetables they grow, making the most of each season.  However, it’s not just for growing – with minimal use of chemicals – and selling skills that Chris and Mike have been selected for this new award; it is as much for their huge support of the farmers’ market movement and their drive to keep standards high.  First-class, field-fresh vegetables are a hallmark of a great farmers’ market and Malthouse Produce sets an excellent ethical and quality example for the sector.


Extreme weather (the coldest on record)

Snow at Stratford market on December 18thFind out how producers coped at Stratford upon Avon on Saturday December 18th when the snow fell and just kept falling!! Take a look at  – skettsfarmersmarkets

Happy New Year

Happy new year to all farmers’ markets producers and customers.

There are 11 markets to visit in January including a new date for Warwick – Saturday January 29th. (Every 5th Saturday in the month)



Last Farmers’ Markets before Christmas

Christmas markets this weekend.  Unbelievably, it is the last week end before Christmas and we have two great markets in the midlands.

Stratford upon Avon tomorrow and Leamington Spa on Sunday.  Despite the forecast of heavy snow, these will be busy markets with people collecting Christmas orders and stocking up on vital and not so vital Christmas goodies.

No doubt the producers will breathe a sigh of relief on Sunday afternoon when they too can start to think about their Christmas preparations.