Greenwell Farms

Matt Gregory, Greenwell Estates
Photo: Matt Gregory

SITUATION: The Greenwell Estate and Farms are situated on the east coast near to the Suffolk town of Woodbridge.  The coastal location of the farms gives a climatic advantage, both in early spring and late autumn in the fact that they are relatively frost free.
AREA: The farmed area extends to 1230 hectares, of which 800 hectares are currently included in a contract farming agreement with Velcourt Limited and Greenwell farms. A further 130 hectares at Hill Farm has been added to the above agreement under a Farm Business Tenancy with a further 235 hectares under a contract farming arrangement with Velcourt Ltd and Stanny House Farm. Annual rents and land swaps are also part of the business model allowing for expansion in potato area both for Ware and seed.

Cropping rotations are dependent upon soil type:

a) Silty clay loam rotation: sugar beet, wheat, wheat, wheat.
This is a typical rotation concentrating on sugar beet one in four years.  Having an area of spring cropping on this soil type requires a dry period to establish a crop of sugar beet, but a wet spring may mean that crop establishment may not happen until middle to the end of April.
b) The rotation on the lighter land revolves around 280 hectares of potatoes, 11500 tonnes sugar beet, 8,000 tonnes of dry bulb onions and land swaps between another local farm business meaning brassica’s, sweet corn and swedes are grown. A typical rotation would be:  potatoes, cereal, sugar beet/sweet corn, cereal, onions
280 hectares of potatoes are grown, made up of first earlies, early bakers, salad potatoes and second crop, which are marketed through ESP against contracts where possible.  Potatoes are grown no closer than 1 in 5 years.

Choose a location
Greenwell Farms
IP12 2BX
160 hectares of onions are produced (25 ha early sets and 135 ha main crop bulb onions). All production is stored on farm in boxes or bulk, cold or Ambient and is all grown for Tesco. This business is a member of G’s Growers.

Sugar beet is grown in conjunction with British Sugar and delivered to the Bury St Edmunds factory.

c) All businesses subscribe via CMI to ACCS, APS, F2F and LEAF marque.

Enviromental Aims

1. To maintain an environmentally acceptable environment on the Estates, whilst producing the maximum quantity and quality of produce from the land area by controlling the use of herbicides, pesticides and all other direct inputs.
2. Maintain the habitats present for nature conservation by non-intervention whenever possible.
3. Maintain footpaths and bridleways in good condition ensuring they are safe for the public’s use.
4. Maintenance and development of all environmental habitats on the Estate.

The other Farms that make up East Suffolk Produce: