Rebecca Fielding - Pulford Farm Dairies in Blackburn
I am blessed to be able to look out of my window as I write this.
We’ve a wonderful view of the fields and hedges that surround our house on the farm. Our valley is beautiful and perfectly located very close to Blackburn and the surrounding towns - ideal for a producer/processing dairy farm.
My family and I run a pedigree Holstein herd and milk 140 cows whilst processing all our milk in our own dairy.
I personally spend around 50 hours a week delivering milk over seven days to a wide variety of customers - from houses to large factories and shops. This is alongside working in the farm office and on the farm when I can alongside my amazing family and several other milkmen and women.
The dairy saw a surge in doorstep delivery customers at the beginning of the Covid-19 outbreak as people looked to local suppliers to deliver their essentials when the supermarkets ran out.
This helped to counteract the devastating cancellation of milk and cream orders from our many restaurant and business customers.
Due to the never ending Covid-19 complications, I am now unable to knock on the doors of my customers to take payments. We have swiftly had to re arrange payment methods and many customers now pay online.
I still see and interact with people daily though, and the positive support I get from many is amazing.
Customers love to follow the Facebook page and often have many questions about the farm. They are completely fascinated with the farming calendar.
Many love to watch the grazing cows in the fields, knowing where their milk has come from and as they drive past, they can watch the forever changing colours (and smells) of the fields.
The connection of the food on your plate and where it comes from has become more prevalent during lockdown, when many have turned to their gardens and vegetable patches to fill the long hours of boredom.
I, myself have a jungle of a veg patch! Rhubarb and blackcurrants, I can grow in abundance - peas and tomatoes, I shall continue to leave to the experts. I am in awe of growers who do this for a living.
Every farm in the UK is completely different but, incredibly valuable to the urban nation who rely on us daily to put food on their tables.
Despite the uncertainty of Brexit, foreign imports, climate change and lack of production support, farmers must continue to plan way ahead into the future to prepare their land, breed the animals and convince our somewhat dubious offspring that farming is the best job in the world.
I would like to pass on this message from my customers to all farmers as I know that many never get to see who buys the produce they have spent so much blood, sweat and tears on.
Just in case no one says it.
You are amazing, admired, appreciated and this country needs you more than ever. So, carry on planting it, breeding it, feeding it, and loving it!