An industry podcast has helped a Welsh farming family to launch a new pick-your-own pumpkin venture, creating a new income stream for their business.
Sheep farmers Tom and Beth Evans welcomed the first customers to their farm over the weekend as Pwmpenni Pendre opened for business.
The diversification has been established at Pendre, a 24-hectare holding at Llanfihangel y Creuddyn, Aberystwyth.
A Farming Connect Ear to the Ground podcast, an episode which gave key advice on how to establish a PYO pumpkin business, played an integral role in launching the enterprise.
“We listened to this podcast over and over again," said Beth, “When there were times we were unsure or had reservations we would listen again and that gave us the reassurance to continue.’’
For their new venture, Farming Connect, which is funded by the Welsh government, stepped in with a package of support when the couple needed it.
They took advantage of a one-to-one surgery and mentoring advice from agricultural diversification mentor Gary Rees.
“All of these in combination made us go for it, and we are so pleased that we have," Beth said.
There was also assistance from horticulture support body TyfuCymru to set up a booking system and website, and advice from Chris Creed of ADAS.
The Evans family are now part of a Growers Group. “This is great for networking and sharing ideas and problem solving," explained. Beth.
A new episode of the Ear To The Ground podcast is released every fortnight and covers a range of topics.