Hook Farm have been able to overcome production problems by boosting their knowledge with funded training through Tyfu Cymru...

Martin has been growing vegetable crops at Hook Farm for 28 years and in the last 7 years has expanded into both daffodil and potato growing. Originally Martin sold much of his brassica crop on volatile wholesale markets in both Wales and the West Country. However more recently in the last 15 years he has been focused on sales to multiple retailers supplying their Welsh stores under a more consistent pricing model.

“Due to our location, it is often very difficult to get experts from the vegetable sector (based in Eastern England) to come and help train us in improving our growing skills. We are always in danger of becoming less competitive as producers due to a lack of up to date knowledge.”
– Martin Griffiths

Therefore, two recent training courses for commercial Welsh vegetable producers conducted by Andy Richardson of AB agronomy and funded by Tyfu Cymru, have provided a huge boost to our ongoing knowledge.

Clubroot in brassicas (plasmodiophora brassicae) has been a particular problem within many crops all over the UK in 2019; Andy was able to focus on methods of controlling this soil borne disease as well as covering many other production problems.

Both courses (on Alliums and Brassicas) were not only classroom based but also involved field visits to look at practical issues first-hand.

Martin commented after attending both sessions, “even though I have been growing vegetables for several years, these events have provided me with a wide range of up-to-date information building on my existing knowledge. As usual when growing crops there are many grey areas without easy answers.Therefore it is really beneficial to talk through specific issues with experts and devise a plan for improving my crop production”.

“I am very pleased to have attended these training sessions with Andy Richardson, I would recommend them to all vegetable growers, and I am grateful that Tyfu Cymru has funded this support for the Welsh Horticulture sector.” – Martin Griffiths

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