Tiptree on TV – Robotics the future of picking?
Tiptree farm is working with Essex University on their research into the use of robotics for picking strawberries. This early stage of research was filmed by BBC TV for Look East and appeared on several news bulletins on Thursday 16 August.
Look out for Andrey explaining the split second decisions made by our pickers as they evaluate each berry to see if it should be picked or left to ripen for 24 or 48 hours.
Science Correspondent Richard Westcott and his cameraman Mark filmed on the farm and in the factory at Tiptree before investigating the latest robotic development at the university. Robotic use is challenge but it will be many years before it takes over from the experience and sharp eyes of our great team of pickers.
Permissive Path Closures at the Tiptree farm
Wilkin & Sons entered an agreement with Natural England in 2008 to create a permissive footpath on their farm. This agreement was for 10 years and comes to an end in July. We hope that many of our neighbours have enjoyed using this footpath over the intervening decade but as the number of people utilising this route has increased, along with the number of farm vehicle movements we have also become increasingly concerned for peoples safety as and when vehicles and pedestrians meet. It is with regret therefore that we have taken the decision to close this permissive path from the end of July which we hope you will understand. All of our other public footpaths remain unaffected.
Please find the below map showing the path closures in red, effective from 1st August 2018.
Fruit & Grain Trail for The Bakers
In July we welcomed members of The Worshipful Company of Bakers on their “Master’s Day Out” when they visited Tiptree and Cressing Temple to follow our Fruit and Grain Trail. The Master, HH Stephen Kramer QC, brought members and their guests to discover more about fruit growing from Chris Newenham, joint managing director, who took them on a trailer of discovery round the farm; there was a long stop tasting strawberries!
Entering the New Growing System (NGS) there was a huge amount of interest in the innovative system where alternate troughs of strawberries can be raised and lowered to allow space for picking, while maximising the growing space. This NGS is a first for strawberries the UK and is very effective. Tally Flack then guided the group round the museum and highlighted some of the more unusual pieces of equipment such as the very old cherry stoner.
A short cross country route took us all to Cressing Temple Barns, the oldest timber framed barns of the size in Europe and probably the world. After a hearty ploughman’s lunch farmer and countryman, Robert Bucknell, spoke about the history of the Knights Templars and their relationship with the City of London. The Bakers were particularly interested in the history of cereals from the early grains of more than 2,000 years ago to a sample of the previous day’s harvest. After a day of fruit and grain there was time to relax in the walled garden with the camomile seat, running water and traditional garden plants that thrive under the care of the gardener and volunteers.
No visitor to a Tiptree tea room can escape without enjoying a special cream tea and we celebrated the day with a welcome glass of Raspberry Gin Fizz.
We have strong links with The Worshipful Company of Bakers through Caroline Kenyon of the Bread Awards who is a member of the Company, and it was thanks to Caroline and the staff from the farm and the tea rooms that everyone had a day to remember.
Thankfully we were blessed with a warm day and a cool breeze.
The Little Scarlet Music Festival, July 2018
Nearly 1000 people enjoyed the music and the sunshine at the third Little Scarlet Music Festival on the farm at Wilkin and Sons in Tiptree. The Festival is a local event to thank the community for their support during the year. This year six bands entertained the crowd: Chopper 4, Band of Fools, Pet Needs, Hobo Chang, The Kopy Katz and the headliners were Frisco Monk.
A “busk stop” presented budding musicians with the opportunity to show off their talent by signing up on the day to sing along with local band Sound Mirrors in accompaniment.
KYDS, the local youth drama society opened the main stage, performing a song from their recent production 'Oliver'.
‘Gunpowder Gertie’ entertained the children with her wonderful interactive show, whilst the adults could sample a Gin Spritzer from The Gin Rummy Bar. Freshly picked strawberries were enjoyed in the sunny weather, and Meeleyhoops encouraged all ages to try hula-hooping! Local firm Millins provided the hot dogs and burgers and Colchester based ‘The Chickpea Company’ provided delicious curry.
Joint Managing Director Chris Newenham thanked everyone who attended and those who helped to organise the event raising valuable funds for The Child Growth Foundation – (research fundraising and supporting children, adults and families dealing with rare growth conditions) and the Friends of Columbus School & College (raising funds for fun experiences and days out for pupils with special needs.)
''High Flyers'' at the Tiptree Strawberry Race 2018
This year’s Tiptree Strawberry Race, for the fastest picker of the tiny Little Scarlet strawberry, took place on Ship Field on Wilkin & Sons’ farm. This was the first time pickers were faced with fruit at table top height, instead of crouching on the ground for the tiny strawberries.
The pickers: farm workers and visiting teams took the theme “High Flyers” to heart and arrived in various hats and costumes to reflect RAF100 and high flying machines. The celebrity “guest” was a replica of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang kindly brought to the field by Lodge Coaches which gave a splash of nostalgia and colour to the event.
Funds raised will be given to RAF100 and Aspire. Rebecca Davies of the RAF Association thanked everyone for taking part and said, “We are a welfare charity looking after RAF personnel and are part of the RAF100 appeal. Congratulations on the hats that look incredible and the fancy dresses are amazing.”
Hannah Wyatt from Aspire added her thanks and said, “Thank you so much for all turning up to compete for our charities. Aspire provides practical help for people with spinal injuries which enables many of them to return to their own homes.”
As he presented the prizes chairman of Wilkin & Sons, Walter Scott said: “This really is a quirky event with so many people raising money for two important charities.”
Best Hat: Pat Bembridge in a hat called “Another safe return”
Best Dressed Team: “The Quirks” from the sales office, Tiptree
Fastest Team: Thursday Cottage with 14kg
Fastest Picker: Slavcho Pavlov (Bulgaria) 4.28kg
We were fortunate that visitors from our German distributor, local businesses and HMKM – London designers of Tiptree Bond Street Chelmsford store were all able to join us
All the fruit picked during the competition hour will be chilled and made into Little Scarlet Conserve.
(Photo: Fastest Team: Thursday Cottage)
Little Scarlet Music Festival 2018
Now Open! Tiptree Jam Jar Bar at Fenwick, Colchester
Tiptree’s Jam Jar Bar at Fenwick, Colchester, is the perfect spot to relax whilst out in the town.
Choose from our fine selection of fruit gin liqueurs, wines, and bubbly. Better still, try one of our Jam Jar Cocktails – all with a Tiptree twist, or get creative with our 'Create your own Cocktail' to create something really unique! Soft drinks, coffees, smoothies, and shakes complement the offer, along with a selection of savoury nibbles and sweet treats. Pop in to say ‘hello’ when you’re in town.
Scott Goodfellow, joint managing director of Wilkin & Sons Ltd. said: “We are all very excited to see our first ever Tiptree Jam Jar Bar open at Fenwick, Colchester.
"Together, we’ve created a really smart space where friends can relax, catch up, and enjoy a tipple or two.”
National Cream Tea Day 2018
Celebrating a Great British tradition, this year’s National Cream Tea Day will be held on Friday 29th June.
The aim of this special day is to encourage charity fundraisers, family and friends to come together to enjoy a traditional British occasion – a cream tea with delicious scones, fine conserves and Cornish clotted cream. Naturally we believe there should be Tiptree Strawberry Conserve and Rodda’s Cornish Clotted Cream on the table.
The aim of the day is to encourage as many people as possible who have a passion for baking to get together with family and friends to help beat last year’s fundraising total of over £171,000.
This year we are delighted that Master pâtissier and Afternoon Tea author Eric Lanlard will be supporting National Cream Tea Day; Eric said: “As a huge fan and curator of many Afternoon Teas both across the UK, and all over the world, I’m delighted to support National Cream Tea Day this year. I’ve been having cream teas since I was a little boy, in my home town of Plomelin, Brittany – a region often named ‘the French Cornwall’. My London boutique patisserie, Cake Boy, will be giving out up to 100 cream tea boxes on the day itself in exchange for donations to our two charities, The Back Up Trust and the Teens Unite Cancer Trust. I’ll also be sharing two of my recipes – Bee Pollen Scones and Cocao and Raspberry scones – to inspire others to take part. Let’s make the 29th June the sweetest and most delicious day in the calendar!”
Managing director of Rodda’s, Nicholas Rodda, said: “National Cream Tea Day is one of the finest celebrations of the British calendar year. A cream tea is a memorable treat, passed down through the generations, and enjoyed amongst friends and loved ones of all ages. We hope that communities across the country will once again gather together to celebrate this wonderful British tradition, all in aid of a good cause.”
“Over a hundred charities benefitted from the Tiptree jam and Rodda’s cream donations in 2017 and we hope even more people will be involved in 2018.”
Scott Goodfellow, joint managing director of Wilkin & Sons Ltd, commented: “We were amazed and delighted by the number of people who were able to share a cream tea together while raising funds for charities, all thanks to the Cream Tea Society.
The Cream Tea Society is a community that shares in the love and enjoyment of this popular pastime, dating back to the 1840s. Founded by Wilkin & Sons Ltd Tiptree and Rodda's Cornish Clotted Cream, each year the Society pledges up to 50,000 portions of jam and clotted cream to charity cream tea events.
For more information on cream teas and a great competition:
Join in the conversation on social media using #NationalCreamTeaDay.
Tiptree at BBC Good Food Show
Delicious tasters will be available from the Tiptree trailer, stand F650, at the BBC Good Food Show on the 14-17 June 2018 at the NEC Birmingham. It is a great opportunity to taste and buy some of our latest products:
Sweet spreads: Salted Caramel, Banoffee, Coconut and all the Chocolate flavours
Fruit Gin Liqueurs: English Strawberry, Raspberry, Rhubarb and Damson
Fruit & Veg Crisps: fruit and vegetable - Beetroot & Parsnip, Tomato & Cucumber, Pepper & Courgette, Pineapple, Pear, Apple
Come and talk to the Tiptree team and taste some of our new products.
The new Tiptree Tea Rooms map is now complete with thanks to Michael Hill of Maps Illustrated
As well as making ‘Tiptree’ preserves, Wilkin & Sons also has a flourishing collection of traditional tea rooms across Essex, each with a unique character of its own. There is a common thread that runs through all of them and we’d like to describe that as good old-fashioned service, with care and respect. If we can make you comfortable with good quality service, food and drink, then say ‘goodbye’ in the knowledge that you’ll be back soon, we’ll have done our job. At our home in Tiptree, we also have a Museum of Jam-Making, a Gift Shop, and countryside walks around our fruit farm.
Have you visited all 10 Tiptree tea rooms or know someone who would? For more information on each tea room please visit https://www.tiptree.com/index.php/tiptree-tea-rooms.html
New Fruit & Vegetable Crisps from Tiptree
New Fruit & Vegetable Crisps have just been released in time for the summer market for a snack when travelling, at a barbecue or on a picnic. The range is: Beetroot & Parsnip, Tomato & Cucumber, Pepper & Courgette, Pineapple, Pear and Apple.
“Tiptree Fruit & Vegetable Crisps are light, tasty, and provide at least one of your ‘five a day’ portions. They are gluten and dairy free, retaining fibre and Vitamin C. There’s nothing artificial added, just 100% natural fruit and veg” said Scott Goodfellow joint managing director of Wilkin & Sons Ltd. “Air dried, not fried.”
A Timeless British Classic gets a Modern Twist
Tiptree Tea Room at Bond Street, Chelmsford.
A welcoming blend of simplicity and warmth, Tiptree’s first store and tea room in Chelmsford draws inspiration from the classic British farmhouse, resulting in a rich language that shapes the customer experience. HMKM created a confident new look for the beloved British brand, playing on the principles and values that have made it a home-grown success story. Read more
A new graphic language illustrates Tiptree’s long history, juxtaposing differently sized typography with vintage imagery and evocative, hand-drawn illustrations to create a lively in-store narrative.
On arrival, customers are greeted by a vibrant, orchard-inspired retail space, anchored by a dramatic central wall devoted to Tiptree’s iconic jam products. Slatted oak storage units alternate with apple-green shelving, nestling under large trestles heaped with the brand’s wide array of products. A playful market trolley encourages customers to explore and interact.
Upstairs is an elegant tea room designed to evoke memories of traditional farmhouse parlours – lined in gooseberry fool wall panels, flooded with natural light, and filled with comfy tub chairs in soft creams and moss-green tones.
For a virtual tour, visit the HMKM website.
“Is this a record - the biggest Belgian Bun?”
A huge one metre wide Belgian bun was made by Tiptree Patisserie to celebrate the launch of the new route from Southend (London) airport to Antwerp; a record winning bun perhaps.
The special bun was nearly a metre wide and weighed more than 17kg; created by Clarence Hayden, Tiptree Patisserie bakery manager, the ingredients included: 15kg flour, sultanas, yeast and 3kg of apricot glaze and 1.5kg of Tiptree Lemon Curd, plus fondant icing and 50 cherries.
Glyn Jones, chief executive from Stobart Aviation, joined Clarence and his team from the Patisserie at the airport to cut the huge bun that was share with their colleagues. Passengers taking the inaugural flight to Antwerp were given a mini Tiptree Chocolate Spread, made with Belgian chocolate, as a reminder of the link between the two countries.
National Toast Day
National Toast Day will be celebrating the nation’s love of toast and all of our favourite toast toppings on Thursday 22 February 2018.
In Britain alone, we consume toast 4.7 billion times a year, with butter, marmalade, jam, chocolate or eggs - some of the most popular toppings.
So, whether you reach for a nutty wholemeal, a raisin-fuelled fruit, a deliciously soft and fluffy white, or a modest gluten free, we will be toasting the toast. In 2017 toast popped-up on the Chris Evans breakfast show when toast guru, Professor Tim Jacobs revealed his fascinating research into producing the perfect slice of toast to millions of listeners.
We all have our preferred way of making toast: a simple one click toaster, under the grill where you watch it turn from golden brown to blackened bread in seconds or for those with an open fire thick bread toasted on a toasting fork when the logs or coals are warm enough to cook but not too hot that each slice will be flamed.
Away from home, hotels seem to have an interesting problem providing “warm!” toast at breakfast when the guest wants to eat it, which varies at each table. Part of a holiday experience is overcoming the challenge of the conveyor toaster where you select from an amazing array of rustic breads and commercial sliced wrap – the bread disappears into the machine and is thrown out to you a lighter shade of pale. Put it in a second time and the result might be a much darker shade of brown and disgruntled guests behind you waiting for space on the rack!
Be a part of the big toasty debate and share your ideas and photos on Thursday 22 February tweet @WorldBreadAward with the hashtag #NationalToastDay - it could be the trendiest of mornings.
Oranges from the orchards of the Seville region of Spain arrive at Tiptree from mid-January; and the process of marmalade making was captured by a team from BBC Essex. The clip shows oranges being split by hand and the busy mini line with individual portion jars being filled, labelled before being exported to hotels across the world. The Seville oranges will be followed by: lemons, limes, grapefruit and tangerines that will be made into many other varieties of Tiptree marmalade.
Tiptree Mulberry Jelly
Our ancient mulberry trees at Tiptree provide a rather erratic crop of this rich and much prized fruit. Some years we are unable to make any conserves using the fruit, but we did have some berries last year and you may have seen them being gathered on “TV “Countryfile” when Adam Henson visited the farm.
The jam factory has just released a limited edition of a new product: a small quantity of Tiptree Mulberry Jelly, “the unique taste of the fruit in the soft texture of the jelly lets it almost melt in your mouth”.
340g jars with a rrp of £6.99, available from the Tiptree jam shop, selected retailers and online – while stocks last. To view and order this product online please click here.
Feature in 'Best Brands 2017 - 2018'
Wilkin & Sons are delighted to appear in the latest version of 'Best Brands' where our jams and gins are mentioned.
Board Changes at Tiptree
Walter Scott, chairman of Wilkin & Sons Ltd is pleased to announce that Scott Goodfellow has been appointed joint managing director as from the 1st January 2018. Scott is taking over the role from Stuart James who retired from the post at the end of December 2017.
“Scott takes over at this most exciting time in the history of our Company, I wish him every success” said Walter Scott chairman. “I’d like to thank Stuart James for the work he has done as joint managing director and previously as financial director; Stuart will continue his interest in the business as a non-executive director.
“My job is an absolute privilege. The Tiptree brand is trusted throughout the world and our singular focus remains the quality of our products,” said Scott Goodfellow. “Working at Wilkin and Sons is more like being part of a family than being in a business. There is a fabulous blend of heritage, provenance, and tradition, mixed with a surprising level of innovation and forward thinking. We have achieved steady progress over the last 133 years, and we have a strong and committed team who will continue to move the business forward. We are particularly excited about growing our core conserves business, flying the flag for exports, moving into new product categories, and expanding our Tiptree Tea Room estate.”
Scott joined Wilkin & Sons as sales manager in 2008 and was appointed sales director in 2010.