Me and the Farmer
By Austen Dack
Cambridgeshire potato farmer Mark Gilbert contacted me recently after realising he was spending a weeks holiday very close to the UK’s No 2 and award winning fish and chip shop Shap Chippy. As part of the Isle of Ely Produce ‘Field to Frier’ platform, we have taken a few farmers to key shops in order for them both to find out a little more about their own respective processes.
Mark exchanged details and arrange to meet Matt Phillips (Ashley was out in the Shap Mobile) for a tour of the shop with his family. Mark was keen not only to take a socially distanced tour of the shop but also get behind the fryers himself and actually fry his own dinner!
Mark said. “Having heard lots about their shop i was keen to see first hand what it takes to be at the very top of the fish and chip frying industry. The shop and systems in place, particularly after the pandemic are first class. I was pleased to have a go behind the range, but not sure i would actually qualify for a job there anytime soon. Thanks so much to the whole team for inviting us in.”
Matt Phillips co-owner of the Shap Chippy says. ” It was so good to see Cambridgeshire Farmer Mark Gilbert and his family at Shap Chippy. We have visited his Cambridgeshire fields at the Isle of Ely Produce Open Day and know firsthand just how good the potatoes are grown in that area. We both now have a better understanding of each other’s roles.