Visit your local farm shop
You may not get to meet the farmer directly, but farm shops often stock food they have grown themselves, or closely sourced from other local producers.
Find your local Better Food Trader
This nationwide network of suppliers ensures that the food they trade is sustainable, fair to farmers, and transparent to customers. Their members include shops, food hubs, market stalls, and veg box schemes. Visit betterfoodtraders.org to see who’s got their stamp of approval in your area.
Invest in shares of your meat
If your diet includes meat, embrace nose-to-tail eating by buying a ‘share’ in a cow, pig, or lamb, directly from the farmer. You pay a proportion of the costs of raising it – and later receive an equivalent share of the meat, in a wide mix of cuts. You’ll need a big freezer!
Go retro with a local milk round…
Depending on where you live, this may still be an option. Have a look online and see if there’s a local farmer who will deliver their milk straight to your door.
…Or modern with a milk vending machine
Alternatively, search for a milk vending machine near you. Many dairy farms now have these, often at the farm gate, allowing you to fill up a bottle of fresh milk 24/7.
Shop the Open Food Network
This online shopping platform gives small local producers an easy way to take direct orders, often available to collect from a community food hub (although some offer home delivery). Search on openfoodnetwork.org.uk to see what’s growing near you, and how you can get your hands on it.