Finding out all about farm shop development

Hepscott WI

Northumberland is known for the quality of its local produce and Morpethians are lucky to have several outlets to choose from.

Hepscott WI was very pleased to welcome Ian Byatt of Moorhouse Farm as guest speaker at the October meeting.

His farm shop is known to most of us, both for the excellent quality of his meat and the temptations on offer at the coffee shop.

Ian and his wife Victoria cut their retail teeth selling their home produced meat at farmers markets before deciding to buy and convert the old mushroom farm into a shop.

As well as rearing cows and sheep, Ian is one of the few farmers in Northumberland to breed pigs and his mouth-watering sausages have won awards.

His account of the development of Moorhouse Farm was illustrated with photographs – of course we all ooh’d and aah’d at the cute lambs – and was delivered with a mixture of self depreciation, pride, realism and true Irish charm.

His promise of ‘just home reared meat; no horsing about’, was of great comfort to us all following the recent horsemeat scare.

Of course the farm shop doesn’t only sell meat and excellent relationships with other Northumbrian producers ensures that most of the food sold has true local provenance; however bananas don’t grow in our area.

The meeting ended with a question and answer session and members were heard arranging their next coffee morning at Moorhouse Farm as they left.

The next meeting will be at Hepscott Village Hall, on Tuesday, November 19, at 7.30pm.

The speaker will be Helen Moran, who is aiming to get us into the festive spirit with her Makes and Bakes for Christmas.

All visitors are very welcome.