My personal experience starts on a search for Organic Food in 1985 when my partner at that time, Pam, was diagnosed with a recurrence of cancer.
As conventional medicine had failed her previously, and our lifestyle was generally veering to alternative ideals, we researched for alternative methods of treating the disease.
After many hours, days and weeks this search led us to a clinic in Upton, near Chester, where I picked up a book from one of their shelves called The Gerson Therapy .
Briefly skimming the pages we felt this was the way to go. Using organic food was the essential ingredient for this detoxification therapy. Unfortunately the produce was almost impossible to find in 1985, even in a major city like Manchester.
Once a week I would travel to ‘Geoff Nicholls’ Organic farm just outside Chester where Geoff allowed me to dig 40kg of carrots and 5 dozen lettuce each week. I brought them home, re-planted the lettuce temporarily, and we started scrubbing carrots ready to make the essential fresh organic juices!
We would order other bulk items from a wholesaler who traveled all over the country picking up and dropping off produce. At this time there was only one health food shop in Bury, on the outskirts of Manchester supplying Organic Food, so different from today’s situation!
The Gerson Therapy was not easy. I was working full time in the day, and digging for food! and my partner was taking care of both a five year old and a new born. The need for plenty of rest made the two year period a time of dedication for all. Getting better was very hard work!
Two years later Pam received the ‘all clear’.
This experience caused me to carry on with my interest in Organic Food and start up a wholesale and retail business. Pam and I worked this together, with me doing the driving and picking up, and Pam, in those days, needing to explain to many health food shops just what the difference between Organic Food and conventionally grown food was, before we could go on to sell to them!!
Again, a far cry from today, when Organic Food has become almost commonplace. We stopped this business after a few years, when our circumstances changed and Pam left and became interested in writing.
In 2001, after several years helping to establish and managing the day to day running of a wholesale organic food co-op, I decided to set up my own Organic Food business wholesaling from Manchester Wholesale Fruit & Vegetable Market and called it Original Organics (Manchester) Ltd. This is where my heart lay, and I hope that my sense of good business practice matches my genuine feelings about Organic Food and its high principles. This I can pass on to my valued customers, the retailers.
I have developed many links with growers over the years since my first venture, and am now proud to say that I became one of three directors who bought ‘Blairs Organic Nurseries’ – with a vast two acre glasshouse that had been growing Organic tomato, pepper and cucumber since 1968, and a reputation nationwide for Organic Produce of the highest standard. As well as supplying my retailers with an abundance of high quality, fresh home grown produce, being a grower myself now, gave me a greater understanding, and even better relationship with some of the best, very hard working and principled growers who supply Original Organics today.
Posted by Nev Dunn