Vine House Farm - Environmental Policy

Recycling and the environment

Here at Vine House farm we are committed to helping the environment and our natural resources wherever possible. We are already very well known for all the conservation work that we have carried out on the farm.

For more information about our wild bird friendly measures visit our conservation page.

It is not just the farm land conservation that we are concerned with here at Vine House Farm. We are very much aware that as a population the human race has had a very damaging effect on the world that we live in. Our natural resources are being consumed at an ever faster rate with the effects being felt worldwide. We aim here to protect and recycle where possible and have been carrying out some of these measures for many decades.

Recycling

Many of the products that we buy in for our bird food come already packaged. We aim here to recycle all of this packaging in one way or another. Many of the boxes that arrive we are able to reuse for our customer orders, thus ensuring they do not need to be recycled but can be reused straight away without having to go through another process. Our bird food bags are strong, robust and fully recyclable (PP7). Many of our farm shop customers bring these back. We are able to reuse these on our farm for a number of different jobs and for packaging customer orders for items that we package together rather than using a new bag. So please excuse us if our packaging isn't always perfect! We shred unwanted card and paper and use this when packaging orders to ensure they arrive safely. We also send other plastic and cardboard to our local recycling centre.

Heating

The farmhouse at Vine House Farm and our original farm offices have been heated by the farm wood burner since 1980. We are able to use broken wooden pallets, straw and other waste wood to heat the house. We have recently also installed a waste oil burner in our bird food warehouse for heating purposes. Rather than sending waste oil away we will be able to reuse all the old tractor and machinery oil from services to heat the bird food warehouse. As a farm we also run a potato cold store here at Vine House Farm. This cold store produces excess warm air when keeping the cold store at the correct temperature. We are able to funnel this warm air as heating into our bird food warehouse, therefore reusing warm air that would otherwise be lost.

Water use

We collect water off our farm buildings and bird food warehouse rather than much of it going into drains. This water is reused for toilet water in our new canteen area. Our farm sprayer also uses the building run off water when spraying.

Lighting

Any new building that we put up is now installed with skylights enabling us to reduce our need for electrical lights in buildings. We have recently also switched many of our old lights to new energy efficient lights and bulbs.

Electricity

We have three two megawatt wind turbines on the farm here at Vine House Farm. They were built in 2006 and each is able to produce enough electricity for about 1000 homes, these turbines feed directly into the national grid. Please visit our renewable energy page for more information. In 2012 we also installed two further smaller turbines on the farm at Baston Fen both of which are 75kw in size. We also installed solar panels at three of our farm sites in the last 2 years, all of which are on south facing farm buildings totalling 200kw. The excess energy that is produced is fed directly into the grid.

Reducing food miles


As much of our seed as possible is grown on the farm in Lincolnshire helping reduce food miles to a minimum. Bird seed that we grow includes black sunflowers, red millet, white millet, canary seed, wheat and oilseed rape.

Waste seed

Our home grown seed is dried and cleaned before entering our bird food warehouse. We only like to use the best of the seeds for our bird food mixes so we do produce waste seed. We feed a lot of this seed on our own farm to our farm land birds. We also have local reserves such as Rutland Water come and collect this waste seed to feed on their reserves.

Local staff

We aim to recruit and employ local staff where possible. Six of our team live in the local village and are able to walk or cycle to work while many of the others live in the local town of Spalding.

Buildings

All new buildings are designed with the environment in mind. Our bird food warehouse was built with insulated panels to help reduce the need for heating. By investing in a larger warehouse and bulk storage facilities we are also able to take in larger deliveries at any one time making our deliveries more efficient.

On the farm

We are well recognised for many of the conservation measures that we carry out here at Vine House Farm. We also aim to farm responsibly and reduce inputs and waste where possible. We regularly field walk our crops to make sure we apply the pesticides and fertilizers that are required. We have also invested in boom irrigators for our potatoes. These booms apply water more efficiently than the more traditional gun irrigators.