Yorkshire food firm is to star on tonight's This Week on the Farm on Channel 5

Yorkshire food company Heck will appear on tonight’s This Week on the Farm on Channel 5 at 8pm.

Roving reporter, JB Gill, spends the day at the Bedale-based food firm’s futuristic vertical farm

The programme, a celebration of farming and British producers, sees roving reporter, JB Gill, spend the day at the Bedale-based food firm’s futuristic vertical farm, learning about the hi-tech growing method.

Mr Gill said: “It was great to visit Heck and see how a traditional farming family is now really investing in the future and being at the cutting edge of great tasting food.

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I really enjoyed it and learnt a huge amount."

Heck's co-founder, Andrew Keeble, added: “It was fantastic to host JB. We currently import 10,000 tonnes of basil from Spain each year, so the vertical farm immediately eliminates a huge amount of food miles.

"We are farmers turned producers, but now we’re able to look to the future of agriculture. There are huge benefits to vertical farming – no pesticides or herbicides, less water, no transport, less food waste, higher production, better shelf life – the list is endless.

"Our aim is to be able to produce a wide range of leafy veg and herbs that we can use across the range, delivering tasty flavours from farm, to factory, to plate.”

The £100,000 vertical farm allows the company to grow herbs and micro-greens that can be mixed straight into Heck’s popular ‘veg with edge’ vegan range.

Vegetarianism and veganism are growing in popularity and the trend is set to increase, with current food sales in the ‘meat-free’ sector worth £600m.

In the UK 41 per cent of consumers say that they don’t eat meat or are actively reducing meat consumption and the word ‘veganism’ is one of Google’s most searched. Now 14 per cent of the UK population are now following a meat-free diet. The many benefits to health and to the environment are feeding the phenomenon.

Heck was founded in 2012 and produces both meat and vegan sausages. An average of 50,000 vegan sausages are made every day, which is almost 13 million vegan sausages rolling off the production every year.