ED­I­TOR’S LET­TER

NZ Life & Leisure - - Contents -

DO ALL CITY FOLK dream of up­ping sticks and go­ing to live in the coun­try? Does each and ev­ery one har­bour a se­cret de­sire to be be­yond the city noise and blus­ter, co­cooned in the peace of the coun­try­side? Lots of ur­ban­ites are of that mind­set judg­ing by the pop­u­lar­ity of our an­nual coun­try is­sue. It’s the favourite of many. It cap­tures the en­ergy of peo­ple mak­ing a liv­ing off the land. Some­times that’s all they’re mak­ing – a liv­ing and of­ten not a very ro­bust one. Don’t I know about that af­ter my four years as Madame Mizuna, dur­ing which our beau­ti­ful glasshouse pro­duced 400 kilo­grams of gourmet greens a week yet sel­dom even cov­ered the wages of the part-time staff. Thank heav­ens I also had this mag­a­zine, which I love so much. (And how happy I am to now own as well as edit.)

But I do miss coun­try life, es­pe­cially my big veg­etable gar­dens where I could grow enough fruit and veges to

¯ feed the house­hold and have some left to bot­tle, pickle and give away. I also still have ridicu­lous dreams that I some­times (fool­ishly) run past the for­mer Lord Let­tuce. He’s de­vel­oped a very poor at­ti­tude to such ideas. “The broom pad­docks next door to Lom­bardy in St Bathans would be per­fect for high- al­ti­tude high- health black­cur­rant pro­duc­tion,” I say. Up come his hands in a “Stop right there” mo­tion. “Don’t even think about it,” he says in a com­mand­ing tone not of­ten used and so not to be ig­nored.

I share the ex­cite­ment of this coun­try is­sue with you in se­cret an­tic­i­pa­tion of find­ing an idea with which I could sneak back to the coun­try to pur­sue. I love to read about the coura­geous peo­ple of the land who see what others don’t, who ex­per­i­ment with new ideas, who work with­out rec­om­pense or ac­knowl­edge­ment – of­ten for long pe­ri­ods – just be­cause they are pas­sion­ate about their goals. You will meet many such brave and vi­sion­ary char­ac­ters in the fol­low­ing pages.

Our be­lief in the value such men and women add to the coun­try is demon­strated by our de­ci­sion to be­come the me­dia part­ner of a new award to iden­tify and hon­our the coun­try’s out­stand­ing food and drinks pro­duc­ers. It is called ex­actly that – the Out­stand­ing NZ Food Pro­ducer Awards – and our food ed­i­tor Anna Tait- Jamieson and food writer Lucy Corry are both busy judg­ing and are thrilled to be in­volved. You can be part of the vot­ing process too by nom­i­nat­ing your favourites, whether they are a farm­ers’ mar­ket, a New Zealand food re­gion, a spe­cialty store or su­per­mar­ket, a food prod­uct or a food pro­ducer. If you haven’t yet voted, there’s still time (visit out­stand­ing­food­pro­ducer.nz). And in our next is­sue, you will be able to read about the win­ner, as full cov­er­age in NZ Life & Leisure is part of the supreme prize pack­age.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.