The “King of Carrots” Clem Tompsett of Tompsett Burgess Growers, has been farming carrots for over 50 years. The family company produces over 75,000 tonnes of carrots and 9,000 tonnes of parsnips a year. TBG is based at Whitehall Farm, Isleham near Ely, Cambridgeshire. Their land base is Suffolk, Norfolk and the fens of Cambridgeshire and to enable supply 52 weeks of the year, late crop grown in Tayside region, Scotland.
The land used for growing TBG’s crops, carrots, parsnips and onions is managed by the Farming Director, Ian Hall with a team of dedicated crop managers.
Clem has been farming since the early 1950′s and Willow Farm, where it all started, is made up of 1050 acres of prime fen land, almost all of which falls into the parish of Isleham. Clem’s daughter Jackie works at the hub of the business and is gradually taking a more active involvement in the direction of the company under the continued leadership of her father. TBG has an extremely loyal workforce and are considered an extension of the family, some of whom have worked for Clem over 25 years.
Caring for the crops and seeing them develop from seed to harvest is very satisfying. Clem says: “A major part of being a farmer for me is the opportunity and responsibility to enhance the environment; have planted 40 acres of woods at the “home farm” Willow Farm and have created areas of natural beauty including reservoirs which are a haven for wildlife. We have diversified to allow part of the farm to be developed into an Eventing Complex which is used by the local community by being the home to the Soham & District Branch of the Pony Club” and also hold the first event of the British Eventing calendar yearly.
Clem’s work also involves fundraising and for his efforts he has been awarded an MBE for services to agriculture and the local community.
TBG has worked very closely with Produce World [Isleham] and have formed a strategic partnership supplying conventional carrots all year round to the UK retailers, and early season organic carrots and also closing the gap for imported parsnips.