Not having a television, I missed Peter Ward of Nenagh’s Country Choice on the Late Late Show but fortunately was able to catch it online here. Peter is a passionate man – passionate about the food he sells, the quality of produce available in Ireland and passionate when talking about how he sees the supermarkets driving farmers away from the land. His idea of a national online farmers’ market, linking the producer directly with the consumer, makes a lot of sense, but there will have to be some rethinking about the barriers of regulation first.
There are always going to be supermarkets and people who think that the best value is found there but I prefer to buy my vegetables, dirt and all, direct from the people who grow them – they’re not expensive and, being protected by clay, they keep much longer than any scrubbed-shiny supermarket carrot. I can get organic meat from Knockatullera Farm (selling at the Kilavullen Farmers’ Market) at the same price – or cheaper – than I would pay in the supermarket for regular meat. But then again, for us meat is a treat, not to be eaten every day, or maybe to be used as a flavouring – Gubbeen chorizo in a tortilla, a few scraps of bacon to give depth to a soup, homemade chicken stock for risotto.
Peter – always a great promoter! – introduces several of his own suppliers, including Tipperary farmer TJ Crowe, Philip Draper of Coolnagrower Organic Produce and talks about Irish cheese, bringing Mossfield and Bay Lough cheeses into studio. Watch Peter on the Late Late here and read a more in-depth report of what he said on Le Craic.