Our Strategy

Our Strategy

We aim to be an inspiring model of community-oriented small-scale farming, demonstrating exemplary environmental, social and financial viability. After more than a decade of being a community farm, we’ve achieved enough financial and organisational stability to think about how we can thrive, instead of just surviving.

In 2021 the team formulated a new strategy for the future of the farm, which involved dreaming, discussing, researching, and consulting with our key stakeholder groups. We now have this strategy in place, and a much better understanding of what we do well and what we should do more of.

The Planning Process

We started our planning process by thinking carefully about what we already do and the benefits of doing it. This laid the groundwork for our planning process:

  1. The first step was to map all of our activities.
  2. Then we identified the short to medium term outcomes of those activities taking place. 
  3. Following this, we thought about the longer term beneficial impacts that occur as a result. 

Understanding all these component parts provided clarity of direction, enabling better decision-making, and making the best use of our time and effort as a community enterprise.

The process involved consultation with our three key stakeholder groups: staff, volunteers and customers. We identified two key areas of impact: social and environmental. To a varying degree staff, volunteers and customers all experience the following social benefits:

  • Improved wellbeing
  • Learning and knowledge
  • Improved skills
  • Feeling part of the farm community
  • Inspiration: broadening horizons
  • Behavioural change in relation the food system, eg. eating seasonally, eating less meat, wasting less food, using less disposable plastic

Our farm also has significant environmental benefits, which include: 

  • Contributing to a sustainable farming system
  • Improving the soil
  • Enhancing biodiversity

Our business model includes buying fresh produce from other organic farmers and selling this food via our VegBoxes. By supporting other sustainable food producers, we increase our positive environmental impact beyond the confines of the land we farm.

Plans for the Future

The core activities we have developed, and plan to continue to offer, are:

  • Selling fresh fruit and veg through our online shop
  • Growing fruit and veg, including continuous improvement of site and agroecological growing practises
  • Offering volunteer sessions
  • 20-month paid Growing Traineeship – skilling up new entrant growers to learn how to grow food commercially in a community setting
  • Offering supported volunteering opportunities for people with learning disabilities
  • Hosting public events and other farm events for volunteers or Members

Our aim is to increase our customer base, so that we generate more income. This income will allow us to increase the range and extent of community benefits from our activities. A bigger customer base will enable us to grow as an enterprise as all ‘profits’ are reinvested in the farm.

Some of the new activities we plan for 2022 are:    

  • 6-month placements for people to learn about growing food
  • Anti-racism work: increase diversity of volunteers and continue to embed better practices with staff recruitment processes and other internal ways of working
  • Establishing agroforestry on the farm: planting fruit trees in between our crop fields to increase productivity of the land, boost soil fertility and enhance biodiversity
  • Organic certification: while we already follow organic farming methods, we are not formally certified. Certification will make us more accountable, and it will better connect us to the wider organic movement

More Information

You can view a summary of our strategy process and outcomes on the Mural link below. You might find it easier to navigate in Mural itself: SCF Strategy Summary 2021 (no sign up required)

View our full Theory of Change diagram here

If you would like further information, please feel welcome to email us.