The Great British Bean Project

When Nick Saltmarsh, Josiah Meldrum and William Hudson started investigating the potential for more locally grown beans or other vegetable protein for the Transition Norwich community group, they had no idea how far it would take them.

For the trial Great British Bean Project they bought half a tonne of British-grown split fava beans, packed them up at the kitchen table, and distributed them through community groups and local shops. Each pack contained a postcard with a short questionnaire on the back to collect feedback on the beans.

The response to the beans was overwhelmingly positive, inspiring the foundation of Hodmedod to continue and develop supply of British-grown fava beans and other products.

Hodmedod’s first product was the Fava Bean, grown in Britain since the Iron Age but little eaten in recent centuries. Fava Beans are delicious, nutritious and good for the soil and bees. Split Fava Beans are especially versatile and easy to cook as they don’t need soaking.

Since launching the first retail packs of dried Fava Beans in 2012 Hodmedod has been working to search out and develop production of other less well-known foods, like “Black Badger” Carlin Peas and Quinoa from the plains of Essex.

Great British Bean Project postcard
Postcard designed by Carol Kearns for the Great British Bean project