Shove your feet into a pair of wellies, grab a trowel and prepare to get muddy! Chef, Richard Corrigan is on a mission. He has enlisted 23 volunteers to become self sufficient and learn how to grow their own produce and rear their own animals. Corrigan wants to spark a food revolution and is championing everyone’s right to an allotment.
Richard Corrigan and RTÉ Cork have teamed up with Cork City Council who have provided two brown belt sites right in the heart of Cork city – one located in Blackpool and the other in Mahon. These will become Corrigan’s City Farms.
At the Blackpool Farm the series volunteers will concentrate on growing seasonal fruit and vegetables, including strawberries, currants, carrots, parsnips, potatoes and onions. At the Mahon Farm the volunteers will focus on rearing animals including pigs, chickens -both layers (for eggs) and broilers (for the dinner plate) and bees.
Richard Corrigan grew up on a small holding in County Meath, so he’s just the man to help our volunteers take on this amazing and life changing challenge.
Can our inner city, inexperienced volunteers rise to the challenge and transform a plot of derelict wasteland into a lush and fertile smallholding? The benefits could be considerable - fresh air, exercise and seasonal food, not to mention the savings that can be made in their weekly shopping bills.
The families will have to do all the hard, manual work, clear the plot and plant it up. Are they up to the challenge? Expect a lot of pain and a lot of joy as the inevitable happens; bees will die, pigs will escape and caterpillars will decimate the cabbages – but there will also be huge successes and immense pride as Richard helps the families cook what they have grown. Cheap food is a wanted commodity but intensive farming has a high price. BSE, Avian Flu and dioxin in pork are just some of the issues consumers have had to face up to recently. Richard is convinced that it's possible for everyone to have a slice of fresh country life, even in an urban environment. These novice gardeners will be getting back to basics, growing fresh, seasonal food while fighting everything from drought to greenflies. Richard is convinced he's found a viable and economic blue print which any community can recreate.