Recent headlines have, thankfully, been drawing our attention towards the issues of food waste and food poverty. How do we solve the problem of feeding the world’s seven billion-and-growing inhabitants from sustainable food sources, while tackling the issue of nonsensical food waste?
Step forward the upcoming 1000 Mouths Festival at Nancarrow Farm in Cornwall. This festival aims to do its bit to help raise awareness of sustainability, with an exciting line up of guest chefs and local musicians. Profits from the event go to Action Against Hunger, a charity working hard to improve food security and health around the globe.
According to food and farming charity Sustain, there is no legal definition of the term ‘sustainable food’. They believe food production and distribution should be managed in ways that allow local economies, both in the UK and abroad, to thrive. Namely by “protecting the diversity of plants and animals and the welfare of farmed and wild species, avoiding the damage or wasting of natural resources and contribution to climate change, and providing good quality, safe and healthy food and educational opportunities”.
A Festival of Feasts, Firepits and Fun
The 1000 Mouths Festival runs from 5th–8th October 2017. The festival will feature guest chefs, canapés straight from the firepit, local craftsmen, live music from local bands, wild cocktails and lots of merriment. Its spotlight will be dishes made using beef from their finest organic Red Devon bullock.
The festival aims to produce enough food from just one of their traditional bullocks to feed 1000 people, at 12 feasts over four evenings. In doing so, they’ll be raising awareness of the pressing need for a more sustainable food system.
At the helm will be Nancarrow’s talented resident chefs, Darren Broom and Jackson Bristow. They’ll be joined by guest chefs including Gill Meller, executive chef at River Cottage, Adam Banks from Fifteen Cornwall, Saturday Kitchen regular Ben Tish and the highly regarded James Knappett who has worked under Marcus Wareing and Gordon Ramsey. Emily Scott, award winning executive chef at the St Tudy Inn is pairing up with the Wild Wine Club to offer all 1000 mouths the most delicious food and wine pairings.
Among Darren, Jackson and the guest chefs, there’s a real passion for foraging, sustainable farming, local seasonal ingredients and live fire cooking. An ethos ideal for the 1000 Mouths Festival, and perfectly aligned with Nancarrow Farm.
The festival menu will include some traditional and some more unusual cuts of beef, alongside plenty of seasonal, home-grown and locally foraged ingredients. Head chef Darren is excited about the event, saying,
“Together we are creating unique feasts with two things in common – our beef, cooked over fire. Although our meat will play a big part, we aim to demonstrate how it can be enjoyed sustainably, so there will be a great balance of seasonal, local, wild and ethically sourced ingredients”.
Working Towards Food Sustainability
It’s not just about the parties. Nancarrow is an award-winning, organic, working farm which looks to spread the message of food sustainability. They believe in rearing breeds of farm animals native to the UK using traditional, non-intensive methods. Livestock are reared outside in the farm’s Soil Association certified sheltered meadows. This certification makes them duty-bound to use no chemical fertilisers or pesticides. This makes the animals, farmers and surrounding wildlife extremely happy!
British fields, farms, hedgerows and waterways are teaming with ingredients. Nancarrow know just how to turn them into delicious dishes. Most of their produce is now used to feed visitors to their newly converted professional kitchen and overnight guests. This helps reduce food miles and promotes good food provenance and sustainability to an ever-changing audience. They also make sure that food from other local farmers, fishermen, growers, brewers and cheesemakers play a prominent part in their menus.
Although the festival is predominantly for adults, kids can still enjoy themselves. Expect delicious food served on beautifully lain trestle tables with fresh flowers and a feasting atmosphere with a real community feel. Or you can go along as a family to their kitchen any other time for the delicious food at the heart and soul of this amazing, and sustainable, farm.
Kids visiting the farm will get first-hand experience of where their food comes from. Home cooks will leave with new inspiration for using locally produced, organic food in their own kitchens. Teaching kids about food from an early age, and sharing our own knowledge, is one of our most empowering tools in the fight towards food equality, good animal welfare and sustainable farming.
Taking steps to avoid wasting food, eating ‘wonky veg’, eating local produce and choosing organic where possible will all add to your personal contribution towards ethical food production. Even making one relatively small switch, such as organic milk in place of non-organic will help.
Book your tickets to the 1000 Mouths Festival to enjoy their memorable food and learn more about making sustainable food choices.