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Tesco Farm to Fork Trail Feedback Thread

(13 Posts)
AngelieMumsnet (MNHQ) Fri 31-Oct-14 12:14:13

This thread is for the Mumsnetters who attended the Tesco Farm to Fork trails.

Here's what Tesco have to say, "In February, Farm to Fork Trails kick-started the launch of The Tesco Eat Happy Project. Since then, children from all across the UK have been on a trail in Tesco stores, exploring the freezer areas, baking bread rolls and even tasting stilton!"

"The Tesco Eat Happy Project is our long-term commitment to help children have a healthier and happier relationship with food. We believe that if children understand more about food and where it comes from, they can make better decisions about what they put on their plates when they grow up."

Below are a few questions for you to answer but please feel free to add any other comments you may have.

- Which Farm to Fork Trail did you attend?

- What was your and your DCs overall experience of the Farm to Fork Trail? Could you describe the day to non attenders?

- Did your DCs try any new foods or learn anything new?

- What was your DCs highlight of the Farm to Fork trail?

If you took any pictures on the day feel free to upload them onto this thread. Remember, however, only to take and upload pictures of your own children.

Every attendee who was recruited through Mumsnet and adds their feedback will be entered into a prize draw where one winner will receive a £200 Tesco voucher.

Thanks and good luck with the prize draw!


BigfootFilesHisToesInYourTea Mon 03-Nov-14 09:55:27

- Which Farm to Fork Trail did you attend?

We attended the Tesco in Newmarket Road, Cambridge.

- What was your and your DCs overall experience of the Farm to Fork Trail? Could you describe the day to non attenders?

Overall it was very well organised and presented and it packed a lot into the time. If I was describing it to non-attenders I would say it was a good opportunity for the kids to get hands-on with food and to get a look behind the scenes at a supermarket.

I thought it was very entertaining and my children really got a lot out of it. They made bread dough into shapes, saw the bakery and watched their bread go into the oven, then saw some more of the store and the bread was ready for them by the time we got on to making fruit kebabs.

I was expecting it to have a bit more content about where the food comes from, what happens to the food once it's been grown etc. From what I understood, if the children were older then there is the opportunity to visit a distribution centre, but it would have been nice maybe to have some pictures/visuals of the journey as I don't think the "from farm to fork" message came across.

Both my DC were very enthused about food afterwards, and they enjoyed eating the bread they had shaped for lunch afterwards. I can see why actually making the dough from scratch would not be feasible within the time-frame but it would have been nice perhaps to have shown them the ingredients that go into bread.

- Did your DCs try any new foods or learn anything new?

My DC didn't try any new foods but they did learn that food doesn't just arrive "on the shelf" at Tesco - they enjoyed looking round the bakery and chilled stores and seeing where the lorries unload.

- What was your DCs highlight of the Farm to Fork trail?

DS liked seeing the fish on the fish counter. The fishmonger had a great sense of humour with his "moving" salmon! DD liked making the bread and fruit kebabs best.

It was a lovely morning, and Emma was great with the children. Thank you for the opportunity to attend!

Motherscare Mon 03-Nov-14 10:01:07


Motherscare Mon 03-Nov-14 10:06:59

My mother took my two children on the Farm to Fork Trail at Tesco in Leyton. This is her write up of the day.

We met up at Customer Service. There were supposed to be 7 kids, but in the event, only 5 turned up. There were two children aged about 9 and 7, I think; a couple of small boys who were about 6 and 5, and my Boy (DGS1), who is 4. I'm not sure how well the wide range of age and ability worked - the co-ordinator, Stacey, said that normally you have a class so everybody is at about the same stage of reading and writing. This lot ranged from total fluency, to DGS1 who is only just beginning to read, and although he can write his name, it takes a very long time and much concentration!

We were taken up to a room in the back of the building, where the children were asked to put on hi-vis vests which had a picture of some vegetables or fruit on the front and "I'm learning where my food comes from" on the back. They were then given paper hats to decorate and write their names on - DGS1 did write his name, but also drew a picture of a carrot and a loaf of bread, both recognisable once you knew what they were. He slightly threw everybody by insisting that black is his favourite colour, a theme he continued the rest of the day!

With their hats and high-vis vests on, the children were marched (literally) down to the main floor of the supermarket, and thus to the bakery department. There, they discussed what things go into making bread, and marked them off on their worksheets (the three youngest needed help with this), and were given some dough to knead and play with. "What", asked the eldest child, "was going to happen to the dough?" and she was told that this particular batch would be used for animal food as they hadn't washed their hands before kneading it.

They had to wash their hands afterwards, and this took a bit of time as the dough was very sticky! Meanwhile, the bakery manager had brought in some "Weirdoughs" for the children to taste - mini-doughnuts flavoured with bacon (surprisingly nice - I shared one with DGS2 (aged 13 months), who enjoyed his half) and salt and vinegar. I passed on that, but DGS1 had two! And a slice of "pizza bread" as the children christened the Mediterranean bread they were also invited to try. That was delicious, and I looked for some afterwards to buy, but they had sold out. Still, I shall look for it in our Tesco's.

Onwards, then, to the fruit and vegetable department, where between them they looked out for fruit and vegetables in all the colours of the rainbow, and the older ones were asked to look to see where they came from.

They also had their picture taken with Bananaman, who "happened" to be standing by the eponymous fruit.

Then it was back off the shop floor, through the door marked "Staff only" ("You can only go there if you work there," as DGS1 explained to his mother afterwards). We looked at the huge warehouse and then there was a visit to the cold store, which was - cold! DGS1 covered himself with glory by answering, when asked what was kept in the fridge, "Yoghurt". And, indeed, yoghurt, milk, butter and ham featured prominently in the trolleys. Apparently the law requires these to be stored at no higher than 8C, but Tesco's internal regulations say they must be no higher than 5C. In any case, the temperatures were nicely below that, so that was all right.

Back upstairs (DGS2 and I used the rather claustrophobic lift, which was too badly lit for my taste, but I wasn't going to carry both him and his pushchair upstairs!) to the conference room, where the really hands-on part of the day started. First of all, the children - and the adults - were offered "Spooky Satsumas" ("They aren't spooky," said the Eldest Boy scornfully. "They're just ordinary satsumas in a special box." Poor Stacey had to agree that this was so!). After this, they were given the opportunity to decorate, with more or less help from Stacey, a cupcake and a gingerbread man.

After which, they were invited to taste goats' cheese and Cheddar, and compare the two, and then they were given a fruit kebab to eat. With the various cries of "But I don't like...." whatever (raspberries and blackberries in DGS1’s case) I felt faintly sorry for Stacey, but they mixed and matched. We adults were given a kebab, too, and I shared my blueberries with DGS2, who loves them. I'd got him out of the pushchair, and he was happily sitting on the floor eating raisins and such largesse as people gave him!

The final act of the day was for the children to make sandwiches to take home for their lunch - basically cheese and salad, though I don't think a single child used any of the lettuce that was provided! DGS1 said "I don't like salad!" but made his sandwich with tomato, cucumber and carrot, and later enjoyed it very much. The sandwiches were bagged up to take home in a goody-bag which included a banana, raisins, some recipe sheets, some stickers, their worksheets and hats.

I was glad to have gone on the "trail" myself, as I was interested, but had had my doubts as to whether DGS1 was really old enough to enjoy it, but in the event he did, very much, and was very full of it afterwards. I am not sure how much he will remember of what he learnt, but it was a fun outing for half-term. All the same, I think it was as well we weren't a bigger group, as it was hard enough for the co-ordinator to cope with the different ages and abilities as it was.

MrsDeVere Mon 03-Nov-14 15:22:01

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WhoLetTheDogsOut Mon 03-Nov-14 20:43:40

- Which Farm to Fork Trail did you attend?

We attended the Trail in Cambridge

- What was your and your DCs overall experience of the Farm to Fork Trail? Could you describe the day to non attenders?

We enjoyed the morning. From an adult point of view it was well organised with plenty to keep the children interested. Once everyone had arrived we were taken by Emma (the Farm to Fork Trail leader) to the training room where Emma asked the children some questions about where they thought food came from. Emma was very good with the children and was careful to word the questions in a way that all of the children would understand.

The children were given some dough and made Halloween shapes with it (with or without seeds on top) to be baked later on. There was plenty to go around! Thinking back, it was a bit surprising that the children weren't encouraged to wash their hands before starting to knead and shape the dough (or make the fruit kebabs later on).

The bread rolls (now in all sorts of fantastic shapes) were then taken by Emma with us all following along to be baked in the ovens in the Bakery. Once the bread was in the oven and the timer set the bakery assistant gave us a tour of the bakery, including all of the various machines, bread cutter, bag sealer, doughnut type machines, etc.

Next we visited the Fishmonger who filleted a fish for the children and they were able to hold it (plastic gloves provided!) to take a closer look.

Emma then took us to look in the Freezer, fridge and stock room and from an adult's point of view it was very interesting to see what happens behind the scenes in a big supermarket.

Finally we went back to the training room where Emma had prepared some fruit for the children to make fruit kebabs. Our freshly baked rolls were delivered back to us.

When it was time to go, Emma handed out some bags with leaflets/recipes/stickers and a couple of pieces of fruit in them. These went down well with the 5 year old, she spent the afternoon putting stickers everywhere, but the 11 year old wasn't really interested in them. Perhaps the bags could be altered to different age groups - maybe they usually are as presumably usually if on a school trip they are all the same age whereas there was a big range of ages in our group.

- Did your DCs try any new foods or learn anything new?

They didn't try any new foods. Looking at some of the other feedback it seems that trying different foods is sometimes part of the trail, but it wasn't with us. They certainly learnt quite a lot, possibly not so much about where food comes from as I think they already knew, but more about the bakery, fishmonger and what happens behind those "staff only" doors in Tesco!

- What was your DCs highlight of the Farm to Fork trail?

I think the part they like best was shaping the dough. There really was plenty to go around so they were able to make quite a few different shapes.

Thanks very much to Mumsnet, Tesco and Emma for a great start to half term.

sarahjchristie Mon 03-Nov-14 21:21:17


sarahjchristie Mon 03-Nov-14 21:24:15

Which Farm to Fork Trail did you attend?
We attended Padiaham Lancashire

- What was your and your DCs overall experience of the Farm to Fork Trail? Could you describe the day to non-attenders?
The event was run by the fabulous Sabrina who first told the children how to act safely in store, gave them all clipboards and handouts, she then showed us to the fruit and Veg aisle. Here Sabrina told us all about the fruit and veg and discussed how to identify where food comes from.

She then gave the children a treasure hunt where they had to find different fruit and veg and where they came from. Joe loved this, he really enjoyed finding out which countries all the fruit and veg came from.

Sabrina then showed us the fish counter, talked about fresh fish and let them all hold a crab. She explained how the crab ate a digested food.

We then visited the cheese aisle and tried different cheeses. From this we went on to the bakery where the children got to watch a baker mixing dough. They talked about how many loafs the bakery made in a day. The children were them able to decorate biscuits.

From here Sabrina showed then the freezers and fridges and told them what temperatures Tesco stored items at.

- Did your DCs try any new foods or learn anything new?
Yes Joe tried some new types of cheese. He already eats all fruit and veg but there was a large selection to try.

- What was your DCs highlight of the Farm to Fork trail?
Visiting the freezer, He was amazed at the size of it and the temperatures food was stored at. Joe also loved the crab.

Thank you Sabrina, we had a great day. You made it lots of Fun for the Children.

sarahjchristie Mon 03-Nov-14 21:28:21

Photos from the day.

bloomsbrie Tue 04-Nov-14 11:55:22

- Which Farm to Fork Trail did you attend?
Leyton Tesco's

- What was your and your DCs overall experience of the Farm to Fork Trail?
It was a fun 2 hours. The 2 children were very engaged in all that was going on. There was a lot of variety, so it never got dull. There was a nice mix of on the shop floor (making a rainbow out of fruits and vegetables - and discovering where they all came from), behind the scenes - in the bakery and the chiller room, and at a table, decorating biscuits and making a sandwich. There was plenty of hands-on along the way and a fair bit of a chance to taste this and that. I think that it was pitched at the younger age end of the group, which was around 6, my DS's age - but my DD, the oldest one there, went along with it gamely and did enjoy it - but she has a very positive attitude in general. I would be interested to see how the guide would have pitched it for an older group. Perhaps the parents were the ones more interested in going behind the scenes – I love going behind the scenes – but I think in general it is good to show children workplaces and for them to get a greater sense of how things get to the supermarket and onto the shelves and who is behind it all. I must say that everyone at Tesco’s was very friendly to this bunch of children and their slightly loose wheel parents!

Could you describe the day to non attenders?
We were greeted upon arrival by our guide who then took us upstairs to leave our clobber and to set up the day. She interacted very well with the children who were a range of ages. She got them talking right away, by asking questions about what they expected, what they liked. We were told that we would find out about food and about the way that things happen in a supermarket. We were taken to the bakery to learn about the ingredients for bread and to taste some 'weirdonuts' and speciality bread. We went to the fruit and veg to find different coloured produce and to note their countries of origin. We experienced the cold in the chiller room and found out about why some things need to be kept cold. We went back to the seminar room through the works canteen to decorate gingerbread men, have a fruitshoot, have a fruit kebab, try two cheeses, and make a salad sandwich. Our guide stayed focused on the DCs throughout and it was a fun learning experience! I imagine that this could work very well with a school class, all the same age, and perhaps linking into their schoolwork.
- Did your DCs try any new foods or learn anything new?
The weirdonuts were new – maybe not to be repeated! The Mediterranean bread was new and a huge hit. I think that the focus on different countries was eye-opening for my DC.

- What was your DCs highlight of the Farm to Fork trail?
Kneading the dough and getting really sticky! Also they loved decorating the gingerbread men with so many different sweeties and so on.

katyk81 Fri 07-Nov-14 21:26:55

We visited the Newmarket Road, Cambridge Tesco for our farm to fork trial.

Having got quite lost en-route we arrived a couple of minutes late but the staff in store were obviously expecting us and the security guard quickly registered the car and directed us towards the room we needed to be in. We were warmly welcomed by Emma and introduced to everybody else before settling down for a chat about food.

The ages of the children seemed quite varied- from my daughter, the youngest at three, to a couple of quite a bit older children (although I am rubbish at judging ages!) so Emma had her work cut out for her in appealing to the whole group. We began by discussing what fruits grew on trees, what vegetable s grew in the ground and what animals lived on a farm before moving on to getting stuck in to something practical. The children then had the opportunity to make spooky Halloween shaped bread rolls from pre-prepared dough. My two had great fun with this and both my son (6) and daughter (3) got stuck in with equal gusto. There was plenty to go round and lots of seeds to decorate the rolls with. It was a lovely activity to do without the normal waiting around that comes from baking your own bread!

We were then taken down to the bakery and after we had put on our hats were able to go and see the huge ovens that our rolls were to be cooked in before having a tour of the bakery- whilst it is clearly a busy place there wasn’t a lot of machines going at that moment but we were told what they all did and then shown the sweet treats which was quite interesting. It was then on to the fish counter. The Fish Monger was great- all set up and ready to talk to the children, he even showed them his trick to make the salmon move which my two thought was really funny. We were taught how to fillet a fish- amazingly my son loved this and has since been found shouting at a contestant on a cookery show for doing it wrong. The children were given gloves and given the opportunity to hold the fish too which was a new experience for them.

Next we moved on to a tour of the warehouse- a very cold visit to the freezer , a slightly less cold trip to the fridge and then a tour round the actual warehouse and loading bay. I found this more interesting than the children and was surprised at the level of stock held as it was less than I imagined but I suppose they must have constant deliveries from the distribution centre and it probably keeps wastage to a minimum.

Finally we moved back to the original room. Emma had prepared loads of different fruits and the children got stuck in to making fruit kebabs. They were incredibly generous with the amount of fruit available and the children had a lovely half an hour getting sticky and making up different combinations. During this time there was great excitement as the bread rolls arrived back too.

Emma was very organised with sandwich bags so we were able to pack our goodies away to bring home and then the children were given goodie bags to take home with information, stickers and some more fruit so they were kept busy with these for the afternoon.

Neither of my children tried anything new but my daughter was prepared to be more adventurous than normal and ate blueberries and pineapple which she claims to hate! They loved the rolls and demolished these when we got home with soup for lunch and fruit kebabs to follow and thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience, the highlight for my son was learning how to fillet a fish and for my daughter was making the fruit kebabs which she really loved.

I had been a bit dubious before we went as I had read several reports from people saying there children had attending and it had really just been a marketing exercise for Tesco and their children hadn’t enjoyed it. However, I felt that, other than the goody bags having their name on them (and quite reasonably so!) at no point was Tesco or their thoughts and philosophies forced upon us at all and Emma really just seemed to be very enthusiastic and wanted the children to enjoy the experience and have a love of healthy food.

If I had to find a criticism it would be that I didn’t really feel the session followed the whole ‘farm to fork’ process and was more about different activities with a bit of information BUT this could have been down to the differing ages of the children making it difficult- certainly I whilst I am keen for my children to know where their food comes from I am not sure I would want them seeing images of abattoirs etc. at this stage! I know Emma mentioned that older children could go to the distribution centres and do different activities , which my son would really like to do so perhaps the older children have more farm related information.

We really enjoyed the morning, it was a different way to spend the first day of our holidays and gave the kids chance to do some fun activities without me having to deal with the mess! Thanks to Emma, Tesco and Mumsnet for the chance to join in this experience.

tenlittlebuns Mon 10-Nov-14 19:12:36

- Which Farm to Fork Trail did you attend?
Cambridge Newmarket Road

- What was your and your DCs overall experience of the Farm to Fork Trail? Could you describe the day to non attenders?
The DC had a great time. They had lots of fun and found the whole thing interesting and entertaining. They got to see behind-the-scenes at a supermarket they are very familiar with, with visits to the bakery, fish counter, huge storeroom freezers etc.

- Did your DCs try any new foods or learn anything new?
They didn't have the opportunity to try new foods, but they did get to shape bread rolls and assemble fruit kebabs. While they had a great time, the content was maybe a bit light, and there wasn't that much of the farm to fork focus; more the 'fork' side of things! So they got to shape bread rolls, but from a food education perspective, it might have been more informative to mix the ingredients, and to consider where the flour had come from etc. I feel that my children have a fairly good grasp of where food comes from so maybe this is why the content didn't seem very challenging/informative. Maybe for some children it would be a good gentle introduction to thinking about how food arrives on our plates.

- What was your DCs highlight of the Farm to Fork trail?
They particularly enjoyed the roll making. They were delighted to bring the rolls home, and my daughter had added huge quantities of seeds to the middle of hers, which she was particularly excited by. My son found the visit to the fish counter the highlight, with the fish that the fishmonger made open its mouth!

AngelieMumsnet (MNHQ) Fri 05-Dec-14 09:19:45

Thank you for all your feedback smile

The winner of the prize draw is motherscare - congratulations! I'll PM you shortly for your details.

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