On his small farm he specialises in growing a range of old varieties of cereal – to what our ancestors were eating over 10,000 years ago. John produces a range of flours that have been categorised into historic time periods; Iron Age Blend containing Emmer wheat and a Medieval blend of wheat and rye known as Maslin. With more than two decades of experience growing these ancient crops, he has learned not only the secrets of their successful cultivation, but also how to process the grains to produce high quality flours. These flours are in increasing demand from artisan and home bakers who are keen to try something new.
“A key feature of a medieval wheat field is that genetically each plant functioned a bit differently – different tolerance to cold or wet, different root depth or stem height.” It’s these differences that make the ancient cereals a more resilient crop, something that might prove to be important in a world where extreme weather fluctuations are becoming more common.