Farming Matters: Harvest time celebrations

Heather Jan Brunt - Farming Matters
Heather Jan Brunt - Farming Matters

Harvest is a busy time for farmers as they finally bring in the crops they have tended and grown throughout the year.

With the wide variety of crops now grown in this country, harvest can actually spread across a period of several months, as the individual crops come ready at different times.



But traditionally now, early autumn is considered to be harvest time and British Food Fortnight (September 21 to October 6) was started in 2002 as a celebration of the national harvest.

Since its launch, the event has become a major celebration of British food, promoting the health benefits and pleasures of eating quality, fresh, seasonal and regionally distinct produce.

Traditionally, of course, harvest has always been a time of great celebration and has been marked for hundreds of years with special church services.

Members of the congregation decorate the church with bundles of wheat, oats and barley, create beautiful flower displays and bring contributions of food to be distributed amongst the community.

Often there is the additional celebration of a shared harvest meal where all members of the church can sit together and enjoy a feast of delicious local food.

British Food Fortnight has achieved great success in promoting the national harvest. Organisers reach out to the retail and catering sectors and to schools. They organise events across the country and speak to politicians about the importance of promoting British food.

To see how you can support the national harvest visit its website