Friday, 30 July 2010

Food Preservation, Sustainable Tourism - the Paradox.

This is hydrangea season...it is shrub that does very well round here and I have a superb display at present in the big garden where the shades of vivid blue merging into pinky-purples is lovely.

The puppies are doing very well at just a week old with their two mums looking after them very conscientiously, but they are still not very photogenic.

Our friend the Climate Change Expert stayed with us last night and over breakfast this morning we had a very interesting conversation in which we discussed how the old tried & tested methods of food preservation, which have dictated our tastes, had become anachronistic in these days of refridgeration. Take bacon for example; making bacon developed as a method of preserving pig meat but we liked bacon so much that it has become a standard part of our diet, yet with refridgeration and the ability to preserve meat in a deep freeze we actually no longer need to make bacon, yet it is still a required food. The same can be said of cheese. Cheese making is another example of preserving protein against when there is a seasonal shortage.
For those us who still bottle fruit, preserve eggs, make jams & make our own cheese, we only do it because we choose to, not because we have to.

As I said a few days ago I have been occupied with the next season's advertising of the holiday cottage and have been going more & more towards the sustainable and green holiday market. Being an organic farm is huge plus and of course we run our house & the cottage as sustainably as possible using only environmentally friendly household products etc. Our water supply is from natural springs that occur at the top of the farm and most of the furniture has been made by the Farmer from our own trees and many of the soft furnishings have been made using local Welsh wool fabrics. So, our greeen credentials are quite good. We cannot turn the farm over to renewable energy sources at present as the electricity demand is so great for milking, though it is something we are looking into.
With the sustainable tourism movement there is a paradox in the whole issue in that while tourism can deliver great benefits to local communities the enviromental transport cost of getting to places for a 'green' holiday is inherently unsustainable. Whilst I do all I can to encourage people to come to West Wales I am very conscious that they all drive here and then spend so much of their time whilst in the area driving their cars from one lovely place to another. Yet we are all urged to live more sustainably. A paradox indeed.

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