British Food Fortnight

Meet Eleanor our Account Manager at Watts Farms

Hi Eleanor!

Tell us a bit about Watts Farms?

Watts Farms is a family run business, which was started in 1952 by our current Directors Grandfather Donald Watts, we are proud of our Kentish roots and certainly have a story to tell! In 1952, just after World War II, Donald Watts snapped up the opportunity to become a tenant farmer, having grown up on a farm, he quickly became known as the Kent King of Rhubarb. Donald sadly passed away in his early 60s, but his daughter Avril fought to become the first female tenant of Kent County Council Farm, and the farm grew from strength to strength.

Avril, with her husband Mike, grew the business from a small holding into a large business, farming over 600 hectares and catering for over 500 hotels & restaurants, as well as major retailers, contract caterers and wholesalers.

Now under the watch of Mike and Avril’s son, Ed, the business continues to grow. During the pandemic we diversified to start what is a now a very successful online Home Delivery service, which runs alongside our Hospitality business.

2. What’s your favourite fruit or vegetable and why?

Has to be UK Strawberries, I’m not much of a sweet food eater but when they’re in season I just can’t get enough of them. And something a little different I’ve recently tried are finger limes, I don’t think I’d have ever tried these if I didn’t work at Watts Farms but they’re great for cocktail garnishes!

3. What’s in season at the moment?

At the moment we’re still in a great time of year for the UK season, on our own farms we have;

  • Green Courgettes

  • Yellow Courgettes

  • Green Kale

  • Red Kale

  • Raspberries

  • Bok Choi

  • Kohl Rabi

  • Chards

  • A wide range of herbs

Aside from the farm some other fantastic UK veg includes:

  • Cherry Vine tomatoes from Kent – these are gorgeous!

  • Broccoli

  • Tender Stem Broccoli

  • Corn on the cob

  • Stone Fruit – peaches, nectarines, apricots etc

  • Runner Beans

  • Spring Onions

  • Broad Beans

  • Purple Cauliflower

  • Romanesco Cauliflower

I could go on forever, but we have now started a seasonal update vlog if anyone is interested in hearing our director talk more about seasonal produce.

4. What’s your favourite recipe with what’s in season?

Ohh, that’s a tough one but I’d have to go with our Lemony Salmon Linguine. I absolutely love our Kentish Cherry vine tomatoes, I’ve honestly never tasted better and they absolutely make this recipe. Alongside our own courgettes and basil of course. I actually posted this recipe on our online shop because I love it so much!

5. Why should be buy British produce?

I think as a country we’re becoming increasingly more aware of where our food is coming from, the past year alone has significantly increased our awareness of how important British farming and British produce is to our economy. Not only this, but being grown in Britain means your produce is going to be a lot fresher, it has less time to travel and the process from farm to fork is so much faster, giving you a fresher flavor and a longer shelf life. And ultimately, less food miles is very important for the environment, which is something I think is very important in the current climate.

Thank you for giving us an insight Eleanor!