WHERE ARE YOU BASED? WHY HERE?
London, as the Orchard Project's mission is to bring orchards into our cities, for people, planet, and wildlife
DESCRIBE YOUR CIDER CO IN 3 WORDS...
Community, Sustainability, Charity
WHAT MAKES YOUR CIDERS STAND OUT FROM THE CROWD?
Our Local Fox ciders are made from fruit that otherwise would have gone to waste, traditionally-pressed by volunteers within London. All of our profits are channelled back into our community orchards, via tools and training for local community members.
WHAT IS THE KEY TO PRODUCING GOOD CIDER/PERRY?
We think that the community-led aspect of our production process is vital to what we do. We use extremely hands-on, traditional rack-and-cloth pressing, carried out by our community volunteers. We think the care and sense of place that this creates is reflected in our Local Fox ciders. Our cider is small batch, low intervention, wild fermented, and a celebration of each year's harvest.
WHAT ARE THE MOST DIFFICULT CHALLENGES YOU FACE AS A CIDER-MAKER?
Being located in a city, we can sometimes have some logistical challenges! Shifting tonnes of apples around narrow London streets is an annual struggle, but we make it work!
IF YOU COULD CHANGE ONE THING ABOUT THE INDUSTRY, WHAT WOULD IT BE?
We support a move towards a more diverse, inclusive cider industry. We think that this can be done through further education of and within the industry, as well as the opening of more urban cideries, of which we are extremely proud to be one!
FAVOURITE APPLE/PEAR VARIETY? WHY?
At The Orchard Project, perhaps unsurprisingly, we are huge advocates of the restoration of British heritage varieties. These are what make our cider unique, and we are on a mission to save rare varieties - though we would have to say our favourite is our own specially commissioned variety, the Core Blimey!
HOW IMPORTANT IS CIDER EDUCATION FOR CONSUMERS FOR PRODUCERS LIKE YOURSELVES?
Extremely. Our charity's mission is to restore the wealth of orchard knowledge, and educating everyone on the huge importance of orchard environments, in terms of sustainability, diversity, heritage, community, etc.
WHAT ARE YOUR MOST EXCITED ABOUT THIS YEAR?
Getting out in our orchards with our volunteers - harvest season is the best time of year!
'THE CRAFT CIDER REVOLUTION IS COMING BECAUSE...
craft makers are working hard! It's a really exciting time for the resurgence of cider, with the launch of Gabe Cook's book 'Modern British Cider', showcasing the hundreds of producers up and down the country, each with their own USP, restoring cider's reputation!
DO YOU HAVE ANY EVENTS PLANNED THAT PEOPLE CAN COME ALONG TO AND BE PART OF?
We run events at our hubs in London, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Swansea and Manchester, find something local to you at: https://www.theorchardproject.org.uk/events/
Whats it like being a women in the Cider industry? And do you think more could be done to encourage more women in?
Amazing things are happening for women in the cider industry at the moment - especially due to the hard work of the Women in Cider group! They are doing amazingly at celebrating heritage, whilst also calling for further diversity and inclusivity, and championing the work of the incredible women, non-binary people, and trans people in the cider community. This box is a great opportunity to showcase just a small slice of that.