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Banc Statement May 2016

 

We Need A Tractor

tractor

So, to get it we are going to crowdfund - and you are part of the crowd! Crowdfunding means raising funds from a big crowd of people, partly through the Internet. We hope to start in September and for 60 days, we’ll run events in “the real world” and online to meet our target.

BANC is a Community Supported Agriculture Project and new we really need the support of our community.

With a tractor and accessories, our work would be easier and more efficient and we could make some money. We will need ADVOCATES, CHEERLEADERS, NETWORKERS, FACEBOOK USERS and ORGANISERS. We will need you and your skills and enthusiasm. Even if you’ve only got a teaspoonful of time to spare.Watch this space! Or telephone us now with your ideas.

VOLUNTEERING WITH BANC

Feel free to join us as a volunteer. There are lots of roles you may fit, though the obvious role is as a Tuesday morning volunteer gardening. In return for a few hours helping you get 30% off a bag of veg and off Suma wholefoods. Plus being part of a tea drinking team who work and enjoy each other's company. Other roles include fund raising , helping with Facebook and recruiting for new customers. We'd love to hear from you. As from June until September we also need volunteers to help with picking veg at Tyr Eithin on Thursday mornings.

GROWERS’ REPORT May 2016. Martin Samphire

It’s a very busy period in the garden at the moment so this will be brief. We have now virtually completed our first year of continuous year-round supply. I think it’s gone quite well.

It has been a very challenging winter with rain virtually every day up until mid-February followed by a cold spell and late spring. So we lost a lot of our winter and overwintering crops to various rots and funguses and early spring plantings were slow to get going. I reckon spring is about 2 weeks late this year. Even under these circumstances we have been able to keep a good supply of spinach, kale, salads and occasional other items through the hungry gap.

Hopefully, this year we will do better with leeks, squashes and roots, so that we can keep the supply going without buying in so much. We will always have to buy in some stuff in the winter and spring, as it just does not make sense to grow maincrop potatoes or onions in our climate and at our scale. Particularly successful has been our watercress and I will definitely be doing more next year. I’d like to hear what you’ve liked or not liked, so I can grow more or less of it.

Our buckybox system has been successful in offering more choice and flexibility to members and customers. Nearly one-third now order their choice of produce through the you chose and extra item facility, allowing them to choose from an ever-expanding list of organic products, some grown by us and some from other local or uk organic growers or imported produce and wholefoods.

A lot of the basics are very competitive with other retailers, from potatoes to salad bags, with bananas and oranges cheaper than equivalents in the supermarkets (if you can even get them).
It’s rather to early to say how things are going to be this year. We have some nice produce coming through in our polytunnels in the next few weeks -lettuce, peas, spring onions, calabrese and courgettes and tomatoes and green beans look quite advanced. As I already hinted, it hasn’t been the best lead-up to the season outside, so the peas will be later than in previous years as the overwinter ones rotted off.
Broad beans, however, did better and are looking good, our onions are not looking good but garlics look fine. Potatoes are doing well, but won’t be particularly early.

It’s the peak time for planting out all the summer crops and the ground has only recently dried out enough to cultivate, so we have to catch up with that before we plant. We have hundreds and thousands of seedlings waiting to be planted. There’s no doubt that going year-round has taken labour away from getting the early crops in and, with that and the late spring, I’m generally expecting things to be a bit later than we’ve managed in the last couple of years. However, if the weather is kind, we will get some decent crops. Every year, we are improving our system and techniques, to improve the quality, range and quantity we grow.

I’m really hoping that we get the funding for a small tractor. It would allow us to catch up quickly with the backlog of cultivation and get plants out while the weather is good and the soil is in the right condition.


GETTING MORE MEMBERS AND CUSTOMERS

funny veg

We could do with ten new members/customers NOW! It's difficult keeping going and not being able to pay out much in the way of wages and keeping the prices down. But we're in our 6th year and here we still are!
We could do with lots of new members but if we all managed to recruit one more that would be a huge help.  See what you can do.  Tell your friends about us and how easy it is to order online, or put up a small poster in your place of work or meeting.
If you want posters, email for a copy from This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
or you can telephone Sue or John on 01554 810894. and we'll post you some.












Eat Veg For Health And Beauty

FEEDBACK We like your feedback. How do you find the Online shop? Tell us what you do with your veg and share your good recipes with us. Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

HOUSEKEEPING. Please remember to return your bags to us, try to find somebody else to have your bag if you go on holiday, cancel only if you have to and try to keep up with your payments so that you keep getting a bag delivered.

We prefer you to pay by bank transfer if you can, because it helps us, though Paypal is OK. But, if you use Paypal, we only get, for example, £5:60p from a £6:00 bag. If you pay by cash on delivery, remember to put your name and date of delivery on the envelope.

CURRY NIGHT

curry night

In February we had a Curry Bring and Share at Tyr Eithin for volunteers. That's the core group, the growers, the occasional helpers, the regular Tuesday morning gardeners and the folk who've helped on and off. What a feast! And what a laugh!

MEMBERSHIP. If you become a member of Banc Organics you get a ten percent discount on your bag of veg. Membership costs you ten pounds a year. Buy it on the website.

WHOLEFOODS. Do you know we sell wholefoods from Suma on the Online shop? There's a dropdown menu of what we stock and if what you want isn't there, give Suzy a ring on 01269 870101. She'll be there on a Tuesday morning. Otherwise she'll get back to you.

ANDY ! GET WELL SOON. Andy, a long-standing volunteer with Banc has fallen off a ladder, (not working for us! No ladders involved in gardening!) and he's hurt his back, and is now long-lying down, I think. We hope to see him in July . Love from us all.

facebookJoin us on Facebook. Thanks to all our contributors. This issue was put together by John and Sue Bilsborough. 01554 810894