Have Yourself a Green Christmas
Want a green Christmas? Shop wisely. Buy local, to reduce food miles, minimise packaging and support your local farmers and producers. Just as importantly, you can turn shopping for your festive feast from a chore into part of the Christmas experience. For example, order your turkey or goose from a farm shop, local butcher’s or even from a local farm for collection from the farm gate.
It is reassuring to see the environment in which the birds have been reared. Alexandra Bridger of Ashford Farm, Steep, near Petersfield, explains: “We rear slow-growing traditional breeds. They have daily access to our fields below the beautiful Ashford Hangers, where they peck at grass and perch on fences startling unsuspecting walkers!”
You can also pick up a traditional white-feathered turkey from Warrenfield Farm, Goodworth Clatford. Owners Mike and Elizabeth Scott say: “At night the birds are kept in a spacious barn with natural light, plenty of ventilation and straw bales to play on. During the day they free range in the orchard. Their diet is GM-free and includes locally grown wheat and they are bedded on straw; both of which come from our neighbour. The birds are kept until fully mature and are prepared on the farm to minimise stress.”
Those who don’t have the time to visit farms, farm shops and local independents, can still enjoy a Christmas feast with local flavour. Have Hampshire delivered to your doorstep. A choice of bespoke box schemes includes Bitterne Box Co who keep distribution local to Southampton and deliver seasonal fruit and veg, plus added extras such as local eggs, cheeses, honey, jams and chutneys, oils and butters.
Boxxfresh, operating from a barn in Titchfield, have an eco-friendly ethos with a focus on plant-based produce, naked veg (ie free of plastic), including Brussels sprouts, parsnips and red cabbage, and delivery by e-bikes and e-vans to selected postcodes across Hampshire (and via DPD for Hampshire-philes nationwide). The website also provides a range of tempting seasonal veggie and vegan recipes if you're looking for inspiration.
There’s also Fareham-based Farmer's Choice, which offers a wide range of local produce including free range Bronze turkey from a family business in the New Forest, award-winning local cheeses, chutneys, cooking ingredients, gins, ales and ciders, even sustainably caught fish. Ordering via these schemes makes delicious Hampshire produce easily accessible to everyone, and is a great help in the pressured run up to Christmas.
You can also give friends and family across the country the gift of Hampshire produce with a New Forest Hamper Company hamper. Your choice of contents can include fudge, chocolates, wines, gins and ales as well as balms and soaps. Have yourselves a happy Hampshire Christmas.