BBC news report on Grow with Wiggly project

June 3, 2024

Wiggly participants at Thriving Communities course

Wiggly was delighted to welcome reporter Jo Durrant to our Wiggly kitchens and the Heritage Hub gardens in Gloucester recently, where we are collaborating with social enterprise Project Grow.

Grow with Wiggly project

Project Grow are growing seasonal vegetables at the Hub for use in our Wiggly Thriving Communities Seasonal Cookery courses.   The vegetables are planted and harvested by volunteers and collected each week for use in our kitchens.  The vegetables give Wiggly participants the chance to cook with produce grown less than 10 minutes walk away.   There’s really nothing better than preparing and cooking just-picked vegetables when they are at their tastiest and most abundant!

So far, our Wiggly Chef has used salad leaves, herbs and early potatoes to contribute to a variety of dishes, including greek salad, pickled slaw and roasted vegetable salad.  As the growing season progresses, we will be incorporating carrots, cabbages, peas, tomatoes and beets in our recipes as well as kitchen staples such as onions and garlic.

BBC Radio Gloucestershire feature

The project was featured on air at BBC Radio Gloucestershire  23 May.   You can listen to the full feature at the two hours 15 and two hours 26 mark.

We are really proud of this initiative which aims to show that we can create a sustainable local supply chain for the vegetables for our cookery courses.   In our first year of this project, we have set ourselves a target of getting more than 50% of the vegetables for our courses in Gloucester from the Hub.  We are tracking our harvesting and usage closely to monitor our progress.

Zero waste approach

It is important to us that we are also taking a zero waste approach, using up surplus ingredients for other local food projects, and returning any unusable vegetable wastage to the Heritage Hub so that it can be composted to feed more produce!   Win win!

You can read the full report on the Grow with Wiggly project on the BBC News website on 2 June.