More than ever before, people are disconnected from where their food comes from.
Where once there were strong relationships between farmers and consumers, many people now have little idea where the food they eat is produced or who the people are who are growing it.
Many people now choose the convenience and lower prices of supermarkets, meaning that local producers are not being supported by their community, with the added impact of food being transported from further afield, leading to higher food miles and produce that isn’t as fresh or healthy.
One of our key aims at Bristol Food Connections has always been to bridge this gap, and bring more understanding around local food chains, agriculture, and how the food we eat impacts on the environment as well as ourselves.
It was with this in mind that we started the Oral Histories Project, with the help of Bristol Food Producers and UWE, with the aim to reconnect people with our local farmers and food producers in and around Bristol, capturing the stories of why they farm, what their life as a farmer is like, and how COVID-19 has impacted them as producers.
We heard from the team at Street Goat about their volunteering scheme, Mark at Barley Wood Walled Garden told us about their local vegetable box scheme, and Catherine from Yew Tree Farm talked about farming sympathetically and in harmony with the land and local wildlife.
This project is a collaboration between Bristol Food Connections festival, the University of the West of England and Bristol Food Producers, with funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund and the Nineveh Charitable Trust.