Raw juice is healthy and tastes great 

kin juiceThe most recent producer member of Stroudco is Cheltenham-based family start-up business, KIN Juicery specialising in cold-pressed fruit and veg juice.  Supermarket fruit juices have gained a bad reputation in recent years for their high sugar content and low nutrient value.  This kind of juice often contains additives, preservatives, extra sugar and not much good stuff. They are also pasteurised which involves heating the juice to over 75 centigrade – a process which kills many of the good enzymes and nutrients contained in the fruit.  As an alternative you might have tried to make your own juice at home using a centrifugal juicer and ended up with a layer of foam to get through before you actually get to the juice. Foam is fine on a latte but not so nice on your juice!  So where does cold-pressed juice fit into all this?

Cold pressing is a very old, artisan process of extraction that has gained popularity again in the last few years.   It involves slowly grinding the produce into a fine pulp and then pressing the pulp to extract as much of the juice as possible. The pulp from a cold-press juicer comes out totally dry.  This is a slower and gentler process that that does not involve heat and therefore retains the nutrients and enzymes from the fruit and veg.   It also prevents the oxidation which happens when the juice is heated or exposed to air.  Oxidation also speeds up nutrient loss and makes the juice ‘go off’ sooner.  Most domestic juicers use centrifugal mechanisms which make juice that oxidises very quickly so has to be drunk immediately before it loses its goodness. The beauty of cold pressing is that it produces a clean, fresh, raw juice with minimal oxidation and no need for pasteurisation. The shelf life is short, 3 days from the time of production, but the drink is a nutrient and enzyme-rich raw juice that your body can absorb within 10 – 15 minutes of drinking it.  A hit of vitamins that wakes you up and gets you going!

Most of the KIN juices contain more vegetables than fruit to keep the natural sugar content low and avoid the ‘blood sugar crash’ that can follow high fruit-content drinks.  All the fruit and veg in KIN juices are organic, sourced as locally as possible and pressed for Stroudco on the Saturday morning for delivery to the school that day.  The KIN team (four siblings) have spent months taste-testing to come up with a range of recipes which maximise taste and goodness.  My favourite is their Beetroot, Carrot and Orange Juice, but why not try them for yourselves?

To see the full range of local produce available on Stroudco Food Hub or to download a catalogue go to www.stroudco.org.uk or just pop in and see the food hub in operation any Saturday from 11am to 1pm at Stroud Valleys School on Castle Street GL5 2HP

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Raw Milk boosts interest in Food Hub     

We have seen a sudden upturn in the number of shoppers at the Food Hub since we started offering unpasteurised Jersey milk from John Barron at Beaconhill Farm.  This has had a knock-on benefit for many other Stroudco producers because shoppers often order other products when they are putting in their weekly milk order.

Stroudco is the only retail outlet for unpasteurised milk in Stroud and it seems that lots of people are questioning the wisdom of pasteurising milk.  Of course, subjecting milk to high temperatures kills the bacteria that may result in serious illness but studies have shown that the risk of contracting these illnesses from raw milk is exceedingly small: about 1 in 6 million.  There has not been a single case of food poisoning related to unpasteurised milk in the UK since 2002 and this is despite the fact that many thousands of dairy farmers drink their own milk raw and there has been a steady rise in the consumption of unpasteurised milk across the UK.

Part of the reason for the growth in popularity of raw milk is the fact that the heat treatment involved in pasteurisation damages many of the minerals and vitamins contained in raw milk and encourages the growth of harmful bacteria in the pasteurised milk.  Pasteurisation also denatures some milk proteins and makes most of the calcium contained in raw milk indigestible.   Some studies show that switching to raw milk can help reduce digestive intolerances, allergies and asthma.

All the Beaconhill Farm cows are Jerseys who produce a milk which is naturally higher in calcium than milk from other cows.  The milk won a Gold Medal at the Royal Welsh Show, has been endorsed by master chef Ed Baines and it tastes delicious!  Part of the reason for this is that John’s Jersey cows are mainly pasture-fed.  Cows are natural herbivores and are healthiest when they eat grass.  A lot of supermarket milk comes from cows which have been fed largely on grain.  John does not use artificial fertilisers, sprays, pesticides or prophylactic antibiotics.  Any feed he purchases is certified free of GM.  Try John’s Jerseys’ milk and you will be hooked!

To see the full range of local produce available on Stroud’s publicly-owned not-for-profit co-op or to download a catalogue go to www.stroudco.org.uk or just pop in and see the Food Hub in operation any Saturday from 11am to 1pm at Stroud Valleys School

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Paleo snacks and treats now on Stroudco Food Hub

Stroudco’s latest producer (number 65!) is a new family business based in Stonehouse which recently won a national award for their Cinnamon Nut Crunch grain-free granola.

primal crunch

We are particularly pleased to welcome Sarah and Justin Mace to our not-for-profit co-op because their business, Primal Joy Foods produces handmade and home-made ‘paleo’ snacks and treats in as natural state as possible and with minimal processing.

The increasingly popular Paleo or Primal lifestyle incorporates a diet based on natural unprocessed foods without modern grains and sugars.  Primal Joy Foods’ grain-free granola, paleo snack bars, fruit & nut balls and rich chocolate brownies are proving popular with people who have food allergies and intolerances and those with auto immune and inflammatory illnesses such as Coeliac disease, Crohns, arthritis, asthma & eczema

Sarah and Justin came to primal/paleo eating after realising their health, energy and vitality were being sapped by what they had thought were healthy eating habits.  After switching to a paleo diet, they started to feel and see the benefits almost immediately.

TammyLynn.co.uk

To bring variety, indulgence and convenience into healthy eating, they started making things like bars, muffins & lunch box snacks some of which were a way of sneaking veggies and other good stuff into their children’s daily diet.  After refining their recipes based upon trial and error, as well as putting in plenty of research on the ingredients, they realised that they had some really good end results and that maybe people would be interested in buying them so approached Stroudco to help with local distribution of their products.

Primal Joy Foods never use grains, dairy or refined sugars. Their delicious snacks are sweetened with dates, blueberries or cold spun honey and they use coconut oil as a source of healthy fat. By not using grains, all these snacks are gluten free and without other substances that can cause intestinal discomfort or sensitivity.

To see the full range of local produce available on Stroudco Food Hub or to download a catalogue go to www.stroudco.org.uk or just pop in and see the food hub in operation any Saturday from 11am to 1pm at Stroud Valleys School on Castle Street GL5 2HP

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Not just unpasteurised cow milk. Raw goat milk too!

As Stroudco grows, we can offer an increasingly wide range of products.  You will have seen below that you can now buy raw (unpasteurised) Jersey cow milk from Beaconhill Farm through Stroudco.  This complements the wide range of organic pasteurised unhomogenised milks, creams and yogurt offered by Jess’s Ladies dairy which has been farming at Hardwicke Farm for 3 generations.

 

To complete the range of milks, Stroudco also offers unpasteurised goat’s milk from Wharf Farm.  Lots of people switch to goat’s milk because it can improve gut health, resolve skin complaints, reduce mucous production and some people find it less allergenic than cow’s milk. 

goat milk goats 

Another benefit of goat’s milk is that it is naturally homogenised. Fresh cow’s milk will naturally separate with the cream floating to the top. The great thing about goat’s milk, is that it’s naturally homogenised – smooth and consistent without undergoing a man-made process.  It also contains less lactose (a milk sugar which some people find difficult to digest) than cow’s milk.

 

All 3 of Stroudco’s milk producers have met the very high animal welfare standards required by the Food Hub.  This means that they are all as good as organic – even though 2 of them are too small to be able to afford the certification process.  In common with all Stroudco producers they are willing to answer online questions about their production process and invite Stroudco shoppers to visit their farms.

 

To see the full range of local produce available on Stroudco Food Hub or to download a catalogue go to www.stroudco.org.uk or just pop in and see the food hub in operation any Saturday from 11am to 1pm at Stroud Valleys School on Castle Street GL5 2HP

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Appreciation for Unpasteurised Jersey Milk on Stroudco

We just had this email from Stroudco shopper, Ellie Moffat: “The food hub is having more and more great foods on it! We love it! Great news about the raw cow’s milk. We feel so fortunate to have the food hub! Thank you for all your hard work”.

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Raw Milk comes to Stroud – come and taste it 30/8/14

jersey cow

Stroud’s publicly-owned Food Hub will be hosting a visit from John Barron, a farmer who will be offering Stroudco shoppers a regular supply of Milk and Cream from his Ledbury-based herd of Jersey cows.  The reason the not-for-profit co-op is introducing a new dairy producer to its already thriving community of local food producers is that Beaconhill Farm does not pasteurise its milk and cream.

Lots of people are beginning to question the wisdom of pasteurising milk.  Of course, subjecting milk to high temperatures kills the bacteria that may result in serious illness but studies have shown that the risk of contracting these illnesses from raw milk is exceedingly small: about 1 in 6 million.  There has not been a single case of food poisoning related to unpasteurised milk in the UK since 2002 and this is despite the fact that many thousands of dairy farmers drink their own milk raw and there has been a steady rise in the consumption of unpasteurised milk across the UK. 

Part of the reason for the growth in popularity of raw milk is the fact that heat treatment damages many of the minerals and vitamins contained in raw milk and encourages the growth of harmful bacteria in the pasteurised milk.  Pasteurisation also denatures some milk proteins and makes insoluble most of the calcium contained in raw milk.   Some studies show that switching to raw milk can help reduce digestive intolerances, allergies and asthma.

From this weekend Stroudco will be offering raw, unpasteurised Jersey cream and milk – which is naturally higher in calcium than milk from other cows.  The milk won a Gold Medal at the Royal Welsh Show, has been endorsed by master chef Ed Baines and it tastes delicious!  Part of the reason for this is that John’s Jersey cows are mainly pasture-fed.  Cows are natural herbivores and are healthiest when they eat grass.  A lot of supermarket milk comes from cows which have been fed largely on grain.  John does not use  artificial fertiliser, does not use and sprays or pesticides and we does not use prophylactic antibiotics.  Any feed he purchases is certified free of GM.  Try John’s Jerseys’ milk and you will be hooked!

Stroudco also hopes soon to be offering ice cream (pasteurised) and cheese all made on-farm from John’s Jerseys’ raw milk.

Jenni Willis, a Stroudco shopper said “I used to be nervous about drinking unpasteurised milk but since realising how much damage is caused by the pasteurising process, I am convinced that the health benefits of drinking milk in its natural state far outweigh the tiny risks involved.  I am particularly reassured by John Barron having seen how careful he is with dairy hygiene and the lengths he goes to in making sure that his milk is completely clean.  Once I had tasted the milk I was completely converted!”

John will be selling his products and offering tastes of his milk and cream – which is 65% butterfat – so thicker than clotted cream – at the regular Stroudco Food Drop at Stroud valleys School, on Castle Street GL5 2HP this Saturday 30th August from 11am to 1pm.  John says “I have always been fond of Stroud and we are very pleased to have been welcomed by Stroudco which works as a co-operative jointly managed by the producers and the shoppers.  I will be offering free tastes of my milk and cream which comes direct from my carefully-managed Jersey herd.  I believe in keeping as close to nature as possible.   The cows eat my grass and produce the milk, we milk the cows and then bottle the milk for you. We like to refer to it simply as “fresh milk” although it is often referred to as “raw milk” or “clean milk”. It has not been heat treated or processed in any way to alter its structure and destroy its goodness.

To meet John, taste his milk and cream and see pictures and videos of his dairy production everyone is welcome to call in to the Stroudco Food Drop between 11am and 1pm.

To see the full range of local produce available on Stroudco Food Hub or to download a catalogue go to www.stroudco.org.uk or just pop in and see the food hub in operation any Saturday from 11am to 1pm at Stroud Valleys School

More details on the benefits of raw milk:

http://johnsjerseys.co.uk/our-dairy-products/unpasteurised-milk/

http://www.realmilk.com/health/raw-milk-vs-pasteurized-milk/

http://www.raw-milk-facts.com/raw_milk_health_benefits.html

http://www.realmilk.com/

http://www.realmilk.com/

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Stroudco wins South of England Enterprise award in Towns Alive

Stroudco has won the South Zone Enterprise Category in the 2014 Towns Alive Awards.

Judges’ comments:

“A hugely successful and collaborative scheme which benefits local consumers and businesses alike. The online tools are available for others to use, and there is evidence of the scheme being replicated elsewhere.”

For more details see http://towns.org.uk/2014/08/17/win-for-stroud-in-towns-alive-awards/

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