All Things Rural was started in July 2004 by Nigel Ford and Rebecca Harris, with both having previously run businesses in the Agricultural and Equine Sectors. Renting the 170 acre farm at Red Hill was the catalyst to combine their previous activities into one business. Initially, the business focussed on the wholesaling of straight grasses and forage crops to the UK and Irish retail mixing operations. By 2006, a small store had been established carrying stocks of key amenity and agricultural species. A small amount of mixing started in the spring of 2007 and this side of the business has continued to develop to date. The business has grown steadily from its inception and a policy of reinvestment has been a core to its strategy.
In 2010, a 6,000sq ft. store and 12 acres of land adjacent to the site was purchased and in 2011, further cleaning and packing machinery was invested in. On the farm we grow a number of wild grass and wildflower species including Black Knapweed, Oxeye Daisy and Yorkshire Fog to name a few.
In 2012 we purchased 30 acres of land in a nearby village and have developed All Things Wild Nature Centre www.allthingswild.co.uk.
We increased our mixing and packing capacity. Our new mixing plant has enabled us to work with bulk bags and has increased our tonnage output.
We completed our new storage shed and launched our new brand All Things Green aimed at customers who want a branded product without the cost of maintaining their own brand.
A lot of ATR’s growth has stemmed from our commitment to service and quality and a huge amount of effort has gone into maintaining standards. We have a young team (except me) of hugely committed staff and are investing heavily in their training. We believe they will enable us to continue to grow the business whilst retaining the high level of service.
2018 Nigel finally gives in to his ATR teams demands!
For 10 years we have been driving and developing our mixture business offering you exactly what you want, when you want it! Thanks to your continuous support and hardwork we have seen growth in our business and to support this we have made some changes for 2018.
- Production Plant 5 is a self contained mixing plant
- Our in house Seed Mixture Programme has had an injection of new technology
- We welcome new members to our team bringing with them new skills, enthusiasm and lots of energy!!
We are very excited about the future and look forward to receiving your orders and enquiries.
Working with Freudenberger
Feldsaaten Freudenberger has been selling and improving field crops since 1948. Shortly after the war, the company was looking for a promising product. This happened to be seed grain. In the post-war reconstruction period, securing the food supply was of fundamental importance. This hasn’t changed to this day because one thing never changes: Seed is a product with a future.
Therefore, the family-owned company from the Lower Rhine region is busier than ever in the area of research and development.
New varieties are tested and researched, and the untapped potential of plants is being discovered and harnessed. Optimisation and adaptation to different environmental conditions constantly brings new species and varieties into focus, resulting in new processing methods.
In our laboratory, the products are tested under repeatable conditions through to market maturity.
A few years ago, the company headquarters in Krefeld planted a test and show garden, with current test series and new products on display. It is managed by our gardener, Jens Triebels. In the garden, specific seeds and mixtures can be tested for practical applicability under various conditions.
Different parameters, such as drought stress and competition, can be tested under real conditions. The show garden is often used to offer customers an insight into our extensive range of plants. Visual differences between varieties are best shown in live demonstrations.This helps customers to make the right choice
Quality - a benchmark without a compromise
Our in-house testing laboratory ensures consistent and precise quality control. We strive to achieve a consistently high quality of seed. The six-member team led by Silke Eckers checks that all incoming batches and samples meet the specified standards in terms of health, germination, purity and foreign matter. This guarantees consistently high seed quality.
Grass and forage grasses, clovers, rapeseeds, various fodder plants and catch crop seeds are currently cultivated on approx. 35,000 ha worldwide for the company. Freudenberger has registered 160 varieties with the Plant Variety Protection Office. It is thus in a position to offer the right variety for every requirement and every application area. This broad range is maintained by working with reputable growers around the world and by having access to a huge gene pool. The high approval rate at the Plant Variety Protection Office confirms that this is the right approach.
The aim of propagation is to fulfil the public service obligation and to provide the consumer with seeds that are perfect from both genetic and technical points of view.
This is done by having preliminary seeds, foundation seeds and certified seeds grown by specialised propagation companies based mainly in Europe, as well as in North and South America, Canada and New Zealand.
The World is our field
The Lower Rhenish company maintains close contact with these highly qualified growers. Each area is individually looked after for optimum yield and quality in cooperation with Feldsaaten Freudenberger’s propagation technicians and agricultural engineers using advanced crop technology. The seed produced under the strictest quality criteria is then processed and certified at the production companies. In order to remain competitive, good seed carriers, alongside other genetic characteristics, are a “must”. This is because the profitability of propagation is compared to the contribution margins of competing crops. The propagation areas have to be located in different places around the world. This is essential for reasons of risk diversification. Uncertain factors such as weather conditions, costs and yield security are therefore diversified. In the case of crop failure due to climatic influences, the company can compensate for the loss of income through so-called intermediate propagation in the Southern Hemisphere (New Zealand). For Feldsaaten Freudenberger, propagation transactions mean a price and volume commitment over a longer period. These are sometimes highly speculative, because there are no guaranteed prices for the products. Furthermore, structural changes in agriculture and agricultural policy frameworks (subsidies, greening regulations, area aid, etc.) must be taken into account when preparing propagation forecasts. Precise flow control in production is a major challenge, because the “workshop” is nature itself and there are no templates.
- Expansion of the coated seed range by adding micro-organisms and nutrients
- Development and testing of diverse rhizobia strains that are sourced from cultivated legumes
- Researching new varieties
- Thorough selection procedure for testing new varieties
- Greening mixtures and crop rotations
- New varieties to control soilborne parasitic nematodes
- Use of alternative crops to create substrates for biogas power plants
- Testing mixtures for feeding wildlife