Transition Turriefield

Fresh local food for a more sustainable future

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Transition Turriefield was established as a Community Interest Company in January 2011. Turriefield is the name of the croft where we're based and the Transition part is about doing what we can, on a local scale to tackle the global problems of climate change and food security for our community.

A Community Interest Company is a business that is 'not for profit' and any money we make, over and above our running costs, must be used for the benefit of the community either by reinvesting in the business to help it grow, or for other community activities. We have a voluntary Board of Directors, made up of local people who live in Sandness or other areas of the west side of Shetland and most of our vegetable production workforce are also volunteers.

We have been experimenting with growing vegetables in Shetland's wild and windy climate since 2008. Not only are we trying out ways of creating growing conditions that make our plants happy, but we're using a combination of permaculture techniques, hardy plant varieties, modern technology and good old traditional methods of farming. It means a lot of hard physical work with hand tools and using pigs and spades to clear our ground. In 2015 we invested in training and equipment to use horsepower to work the land, which allows us to cultivate larger areas. We use no chemical fertilisers, pesticides or herbicides, just muck and seaweed with plenty of attention to keep the bugs at bay. Minimal machinery and keeping things local reduces the environmental impact of what we do, it also helps to lower the carbon footprints of our customers.

Making fresh, healthy, local food available in Shetland is important to us and growing produce for you to buy is one way of doing that, but we also like you to have a go at 'growing your own'. From herbs on the windowsill to a whole rig of tatties, we think you can't beat that just harvested experience. We love hearing about other people's ways of growing in the isles and like to pass on what we've learnt about what works and what doesn't.

In 2013 we were successful in securing a Climate Challenge Fund grant to support the development of our Carbon Classroom initiative. The project supported local residents and communities to reduce their carbon foot prints by growing more of their own food, making better buying choices, reducing food waste and composting more. The Carbon Classroom continues and we can help with information, support and advice on growing in Shetland.

The more food we can produce as a community, the less we have to rely on imported goods and we make Shetland a more sustainable place to live. The more we can reduce our personal and community footprints the less damage we do to the climate, helping to slow climate change.

"I don't like being faced by a range of vegetables from all over the world when I go shopping"


"The ability to purchase locally grown fresh, seasonal and high quality vegetables is a huge asset
to our community, particularly when considering the issue of food miles"


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