College Farm, Russel Smith
College Farm has been farming in Duxford, Cambridgeshire since 1938 and has been suppliers to Waitrose for over 25 years.The farm was first awarded Waitrose Demonstration Farm status in 1998 and has been awarded again this year for Biodiversity.College Farm is committed to sustainable farming practices and has demonstrated this over the years, the key challenges faced are maintaining the level of habitats created which encourage a wide range of bio-diversity on to the farm. The farm’s values are clearly linked to the activities seen embedded in the farm’s ongoing work, community engagement, soil management and fertility, pollution control and by-product management, energy efficiency, water management, landscape and nature conservation. The farm has found that the Waitrose farm assessment gave them some key learnings in areas such as reducing inputs, improving soil condition, managing water responsibly, disposing of waste appropriately, optimal pest and weed control and attention to detail.
Hall Hunter, Tuesley Farm
Since purchasing Tuesley Farm the Hall family have used their 20 years of experience in supplying Waitrose to create a site that closely aligns both the values of The Hall Hunter Partnership and Waitrose. It has been turned from a large field arable farm into is a specialist fruit farm combining state of the art growing systems with a biodiverse landscape designed to encourage the proliferation of beneficial insects.This has been achieved through a reduction in field sizes incorporating native hedging, tree belts, beetle banks and native woodland as well as using natural topography of the site to capture water to be stored in a purpose build reservoir.
Didonna specialises in the production of Table Grapes, their main varieties include:
- Midnight Beauty
- Sable Italia
They are also extremely proactive in the development of the novel IFG varieties amongst others.Didonna has been a key supplier to Waitrose for the last 10 years. At the core of this family owned and run business are their key values which revolve heavily around both social and environmental sustainability. They proudly support the LEAF Marque standard and were extremely excited to have been awarded a Waitrose Demonstration Farm status for their endeavours to conserve and develop Biodiversity on their farms.In this short video, Raffaella shows how just small changes on the farm has seen a significant increase in biodiversity, and how these findings are having a positive effect on their production. Didonna continues to transform areas of untouched land for the purpose of biodiversity with their next projects to include a rose garden, a bat box for the preservation of bats, and an ecological corridor to increase the number of beneficial insects.
Savid grow organic bananas, they are a family owned and run business that focuses on the production of high-quality organic bananas whilst utilising some of the most forward-thinking production methods, integrated with the highest level of sustainability criteria.Savid has been supplying fruit to Waitrose over a 10+ year period have been selected as a Demonstration Farm for the area of Biodiversity.
This is a subject that is very close to their hearts and plays a massive part in their daily farming decision-making process. The Dominican Republic is serviced largely by workers from Neighbouring Haiti, which has many challenges with regard to Dominican legislation and workers’ rights. This is being dealt with on a number of levels, the farms, the industry and through the Fairtrade foundation.
The maintenance of a sustainable workforce remains one of the main challenges that Savid face. Another major challenge for the area is the weather, the Dominican Republic is situated in the Caribbean hurricane belt, this has the propensity to cause anything from minor damage to devastating destruction.