Provenance Potatoes

Provenance Potatoes

Patricia Lopez

We get a lot of our potatoes from Provenance and we wanted to share with you what makes them special. 

Why do we love Provenance Potatoes?

Provenance has continuously looked to reduce our collective carbon footprint, care for the land the potatoes are grown on, and considered the economic impact their packing and growing has on local jobs and rural wealth creation.

When the company was founded, Provenance had two main aims: supply local products to local markets and sustainable growing. Their view was a holistic one: grow varieties suitable to the land, pack in East Kent and sell as much as they could to local and regional customers to minimise food miles. 

In order to reduce food waste, Provenance operates a whole crop marketing strategy. They find markets for all sizes, shapes and skin finishes in order to reduce waste. Small main crop tubers, previously thrown away, are now sold to schools, tubers with imperfect skin finish are sold to a local frozen food manufacturer and tubers inedible for human consumption are returned to a grower for his cattle herd. This has further helped to reduce their carbon footprint.

Hatfield Farm and Monkton Court Farm both have instigated irrigation scheduling for their potato crops to minimise water use.This has helped reduce the quantity of water used when growing the crop without affecting the quality of the potatoes. Chislet Court Farm use Environ Scan and Twyman Partnership use Neutron Probes to determine the optimal use of water.

As part of the collective drive to reduce their Carbon Footprint, Provenance has been using the Cool Farm Tool to help them and their growers understand how positive steps can be taken to minimise their environmental impact. The Cool Farm Tool is an online greenhouse gas, water and biodiversity calculator for farmers. It shows growers how reducing tillage and adding cover crops can reduce and offset problem emissions while building soil health.

The Twyman Partnership have part of their farm covered by the Countryside Stewardship Scheme. Some of this area is dedicated to wet grassland for wintering waders and wildfowl. The ditches are being restored rather than just maintained. Varied biodiversity can be found on the grassland, rough land and ditches on the farm.

Both the Twyman Partnership and Monkton Court Farm are LEAF (Linking Environment And Farming) accredited. This means both farms engage in the following: * Organisation and Planning * Soil Management and Fertility * Crop Health and Protection * Pollution Control and By-Product-Management * Energy Efficiency * Water Management * Landscape and Nature Conservation.

Hedges and hedgerows are important to Provenance. All their growers maintain hedges and field margins. They have recently started to actively plant wildflower mixes in their field margins to encourage biodiversity.

Both Monkton Court and Chislet Court use Solar Panels to help create electricity for the grid and cold stores. Hatfeild and Monkton Court Farms, as part of their rotation grow maize and rye. These crops create biogas which helps to reduce the country’s dependency on carbon-based energy.