Farmerama Episode 25 is here! This month, we hear from across the pond as Abi Glencross talks to Adam Kaye, head of Culinary Affairs, at Blue Hill Farm in New York. He tells us how close connections between farmers and cooks are giving birth to new dishes and revenue streams. You may remember back in episode 21, we chatted to root-to-fruit chef Tom Hunt about his clover dish for the wastED pop-up in London – well, Adam was one of the chefs behind that event. It’s great to hear the stories of the different farmers and producers who helped make wastED happen here in the UK, and he tells us how they uncovered some interesting ways of working with oilseed rape.

Internationally renowned soil expert, Dr. Christine Jones, fills us in on the different carbon cycles in soil and what it really takes to build humus in soil. We had never really understood the decomposition and liquid carbon pathways before, so she clarifies that nicely; she also talks about the latest research in cover crop mixes and the best way to build long-term structure in your soil.

From soils and plants to the wild world of insects that live in harmony with them, Marianne Landzettel explores an alternative view of beekeeping with molecular biologist and beekeeping fanatic, Johannes Wirz. He is investigating ways to keep bees commercially without using chemicals to combat the varroa mite, as these are proving devastating to honey bees worldwide.

Finally you’re invited to get involved in a citizen science project that celebrates allotments and home-grown veg. Roscoe Blevins, who we met at Soilhack, shares the message of MYHarvest (Measure Your Harvest), which he is helping to run at the University of Sheffield. He invites anyone who is growing food to feed themselves or their neighbours to track just how much food they are providing. The team at Sheffield Uni want to understand how much home-grown food contributes to UK national food production.

This show was produced by Abby Rose, Katie Revell and Jo Barratt. Thanks to Marianne Landzettel and Abi Glencross for sending in recordings. See you next month!

Adam Kaye also mentions the fruitful collaboration with E5 Bakehouse for wastED London. We are very grateful to be supported by E5 Bakehouse. They have just harvested their Lys Brun heritage wheat grown at Duchess Farms in Hertfordshire. If you have been waiting to try a loaf, then be sure and pop down soon! In the next month or two, after the grain has rested a little, they will be freshly milling this heritage grain for their Hackney Wild and wholemeal loaves. Their in-house mill is rather beautiful and mesmerising to see in action.

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