The Yorkshire Baker

Treat yourself to a Christmas feast fresh from the farm in North Yorkshire

While Christmas shoppers are already pre-ordering their festive feasts and hampers from the supermarkets, savvy shoppers in North Yorkshire are cutting out the middleman and going direct to source – the farmers themselves – to order their seasonal showstoppers this year. 

That’s because, thanks to Visit Ryedale’s new online Christmas portal Made in Ryedale, it’s never been easier to seek out the very best and freshest festive food for the family, direct from the farm.

“Ryedale’s blessed with an astonishing bounty of produce and multi award-winning producers so – as Christmas approaches and everyone’s thoughts turn to feasting – we created Made in Ryedale to signpost shoppers to the very best places to buy – like our farm shops,” said Phillip Spurr, Programme Director for Place and Resources at Ryedale District Council.

“In a rural area like Ryedale, family-run farms don’t just grow food – they’ve become mini-Christmas markets, championing top-quality and trusted suppliers. They stock food of the highest quality –produce that’s won international awards or graces the tables of Michelin-starred restaurants; but most people are drawn to farm shopping because it’s a great way of trying something different and having fun exploring the district through the tastebuds!  

“Ryedale’s farm shops are perfect places to stock up for the ultimate family feast as you’ll be experiencing flavour and quality that you’d simply struggle to find in your average supermarket.”

While traditionalists might order local herb-fed, free-range turkey, Ryedale’s farm shops also stock Britain’s best game-birds and award-winning rare and native-breed beef and lamb, all home-reared. 

For those bored of Christmas Cake, try a towering Croquebouche made by Britain’s leading pâtissier, accompanied by the one of the world’s best mince pies from local bakers; make a toast with spirits handcrafted by the one of the world’s top distiller, or Ryedale’s very own champagne; and for the grand finale, chocolates handmade by masters with Willy Wonka-esque flavours, and home-roasted, ethical coffee.

Whatever the dietary need, appetite, or budget, there’s so much to discover, and it’s never been easier to source.

What’s more, with farm shop produce being ‘field to feast’ – hand- baked, brewed, reared or grown locally or at source – there’s far fewer food miles involved, making it the most ethical, eco-friendly feast anyone’s likely to eat this year. With ample, free car parking, no traffic queues, beautiful scenery, play areas and in-house cafes, a shopping trip is also a refreshingly stress-free experience.

In addition to farm shops, the Made in Ryedale portal also provides a signpost to some of the district’s leading independent food makers, from honey-makers to the Chilli Jam Man, so that shoppers can source the highest-quality, individual items for their Christmas menus, stockings or hampers direct.

To find out more about local farm shops or to buy online, head to the Made in Ryedale portal at www.ryedale.gov.uk/made-in-ryedale/ or you can see Ryedale’s food heroes in action in their stores, during behind the scenes tours, or by meeting them in person at local Christmas festivals or markets.

Notes to editors

Where to buy a farm-fresh ‘Made in Ryedale’ Christmas Hamper:

  • On the Avison family farm, multi award-winning Cedarbarn Farm Shop (nr Pickering) is regularly ranked amongst the North’s best farm shops (including a National Red Ribbon ‘Best of British’ award, and FARMA’s Best Farm Café and Restaurant). They’re deservedly proud of their home-reared Aberdeen Angus beef and home-grown fruit and veggies, and it’s one of the best places in Yorkshire to order your locally-sourced Christmas hamper.
  • Castle Howard Farm Shop (nr Malton): it might be best known as one of Britain’s finest stately homes, but ¾ of the Howard family’s magnificent country estate is farmland. The Farm Shop is a mini-supermarket of local producers, where you can buy everything you might need from bread to beer, but the Farm Shop’s butchery is one of the region’s best.  It stars a roll-call of the top local farmers, including Mike Fargher who supplies his celebrated Aberdeen Angus beef, and - with an extensive Countryside Stewardship Scheme in place on the estate - only stocking meat of the highest environmental standards and quality. 
  • The Whole Hogg Farm Shop (nr Malton) is on the traditional working farm of the Hoggards, and is considered one of Yorkshire’s finest with its own butchery, delicatessen and farmhouse produce including home-grown organic vegetables, home-baked bread, cakes, quiches, and even Christmas trees!
  • The Rooke family’s Beadlam Grange Farm Shop (nr Helmsley) is multi-award winning and packed with fresh local choice, from their deli to their veg, to smoked fish from the nearby Yoadwath Mill Trout Farm. Unique to Beadlam Grange is their award-winning homebred Limousine beef, perfect for Christmas or Boxing Day Roasts!
  • The Balloon Tree Farm Shop (Gate Helmsley) is one of the region’s largest farm shops, working with a huge range of award-winning local producers – supplying everything from pork pies to bread – and famous for its range of home-grown fruit and vegetables. Their Christmas Hampers are deservedly in demand, and they’re already taking orders.
  • In the region’s market towns, local delis Hunters of Helmsley and Malton Relish also stock heavenly hampers for Christmas, brimming with local produce.
  • Award-winning Christmas Markets in Malton (3 & 4 December) and Hovingham (17 December) are also joyous ways to stock up the Christmas cupboards, whilst meeting local food heroes face to face (and enjoying the odd sample and food demo along the way!)

    Visitor information

    Information about where to go and what to do in Ryedale is available at www.visitryedale.co.uk – part of the destination development initiative from Ryedale District Council.

    Ryedale District Council’s destination development project supports the growth of responsible tourism in the district, and helps to attract seven million visitors annually, and a £281 million total visitor spend.

    Further information

    For more media information, interviews or photographs, or to arrange a press trip to Ryedale please contact:

    For media information about Ryedale's destination development plan, please contact Jaelithe Leigh-Brown at jaelithe.leigh-brown@ryedale.gov.uk or 07435 934 952.