Schoolchildren enjoyed unique flavours of the fruits of the land during the Yorkshire Agricultural Society’s Apple Day at the Great Yorkshire Showground.
Some 65 primary school children toured the Showground’s best kept secret, its orchard of regional apple tree varieties in Harrogate this week, where they were inspired by a tasting session and got hands-on during a series of workshops.
Apple juicing sessions led by the Sellers family from East Yorkshire’s popular Side Oven Bakery as well as workshops to prepare baking apples for a treat to eat at home brought the topic to life.
This fun educational school trip demonstrated the versatility of apples, which are believed to have first been cultivated in British orchards by the Romans.
The Yorkshire Agricultural Society, as a registered charity that is committed to promoting and celebrating British food production, holds this annual event to inspire young imaginations about healthy eating and the connection between the food we eat and the countryside all around us.
Allister Nixon, Chief Executive of the Yorkshire Agricultural Society said:
Our Apple Day celebration is a lovely way of giving young schoolchildren a fun hands-on experience which allows them to explore food, nature and healthy eating in the great outdoors.
Yorkshire is a very diverse county for food production and our orchard here at the Great Yorkshire Showground is a wonderful opportunity for sharing just one part of this story.
It is so important that future generations grow up with an understanding of where their food comes from and how the countryside is managed to support our diets.
More than 7,500 varieties of apple are grown worldwide.
The Showground’s orchard is a showcase of varieties grown in Yorkshire, comprising of the 16 different varieties which make up the Yorkshire Heritage Collection, including Flower of the Town, Ribston Pippin and Dog’s Snout.
Schoolchildren who took part in Apple Day yesterday (Tuesday 3 October 2023) were from: North Rigton Church of England Primary School near Harrogate, Queen Mary’s School in Topcliffe near Thirsk and Silcoates School, Wakefield.
The educational event is run in conjunction with the Fruit Works Co-operative, a social enterprise helping communities in Bradford and Leeds to plant and maintain fruit trees.
Karen Ellis, teacher from North Rigton Church of England Primary School, said:
It’s been a spectacular day and a perfect opportunity because it links to our We Are Scientists project where we have been learning about healthy eating and having a healthy body. I would definitely recommend Apple Day to other schools.
The Yorkshire Agricultural Society is passionate about educating future generations about all aspects of farming, food and the countryside.
As well as hosting school visits to the Great Yorkshire Show, the Society offers a range of year-round educational events, shows and courses, including Countryside Days in June, and free outdoor education training for teachers.