06 April 2023
150-plus children plant potatoes with Kids Country.
MORE than 150 children from Newark Hill Academy, Orton Wistow Primary School and William Law CE School in Peterborough took part in the East of England Agricultural Society’s education initiative, Kids Country, planting crops of potatoes for the Grow Your Own Produce annual event.
Supported by Kids Country volunteers and Kym Cooper, Members and Community Relations Officer at Co-op Central England, and Caroline Williams, Agronomy Manager at Burgess Farms, the children all planted their own seed potato in a pot of peat-free compost.
Kids Country will return to the schools in June to harvest the crop after the children have spent three months tending to their plants and practising growing tips.
Caroline said: “Burgess Farms has supported the Kids Country ‘Grow Your Own’ Day since the beginning, and it is one of our favourite days of the year. We love teaching kids about where their food comes from, and empowering them to grow their own veg. It’s knowledge they can use for the rest of their lives – and it’s a lot of fun, too.!”
Katy Wyatt, Key Stage 1 Lead at Orton Wistow Primary School, said: "The children (and adults) thoroughly enjoyed the afternoon, and it was made all the better for the ease of the event, with all the resources delivered prior to the event. We really enjoyed the videos about the history of potato farming too.”
Kids Country is one of the biggest education programmes managed by an agricultural society, the East of England Agricultural Society.
Education Manager Sandra Lauridsen said: “We love our Grow Your Own Produce event, and it is fantastic to see that the children clearly do too. Nothing beats getting your hands in soil and planting something that you can then go on to look after and finally eat. It is truly field-to-table, and the children love it. Learning about where food comes from and making healthy nutrition choices is an important exercise, and getting children on-board at this young age is just vital.
“As we change our proposal to more in-school events, we are encouraging schools to get in touch to see how we can help bring education alive in your school.”
Kids Country is supported by a range of corporate sponsors and volunteers, local growers and food producers, and individual volunteers. If you would like your workplace or school to be involved in any way, or to volunteer as an individual, click here.