A 3000 acre family run farming business growing both field vegetables and combinable crops. All crops on the farm are grown using Integrated Crop Management systems.
Farmer: Ralph Grindling
Address: Russell Smith Farms, Grange Road, Duxford, Cambridgeshire, CB22 4QF
Member since 1996 and LEAF Demonstration Farm since 2000
ACCS/APS/Sugar Beet Assurance/Field to fork/Tesco Nurture
College Farm is a 3000 acre family run farming business growing both field vegetables and combinable crops. Russell Smith Farms is a family partnership which has been farming in Cambridgeshire since 1938 and now specialises in high quality vegetable production alongside combinable crops and Sugar Beet. All the vegetables grown at College Farm are for the supermarkets. A range of potato varieties are grown including King Edward, Desiree, Charlotte to name a few as well as Winter Wheat, Sugar Beet, Onions and Oilseed Rape.
The farm makes every effort to reduce the need for crop sprays. A well balanced rotation helps to prevent weed, pest and disease build-up with Winter Wheat, Oilseed Rape and Sugar Beet acting as breaks between the vegetables. A Phytobac (closed system biobed) is used on farm to manage sprayer washings.
The farm works closely with the RSPB to increase bird populations. Hedgerows are trimmed every 2 or 3 years. Wild bird mixes/Pollen and Nectar mixes/Beetle Banks/Overwintered stubbles etc. are used to provide wildlife habitats and the farm is a member of several environmental schemes and an increasing area of the farm is managed for wildlife. The farm is also a Waitrose Demonstration Farm and regularly conducts trials looking at new varieties.
The farm engages with the local community through Open Farm Sunday, hosting visits to the farm and giving outside talks wherever possible, and is a host site for Let Nature Feed Your Senses.
LEAF Members have access to “Sustainable Soil Management at College Farm” in the LEAF Information Centre.
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