Yorkshire farm shop that has world's first egg restaurant shortlisted in National Farm Shop and Deli awards

A farm shop in North Yorkshire has been shortlisted for a national award for the second year running.

Yolk Farm, at Minskip near Boroughbridge has been shortlisted for Large Farm Shop Award at the national Farm Shop & Deli Awards 2024 and will find out at the awards ceremony being held at the NEC in Birmingham on Monday if they have been successful.

The business, which is run by Emma and Ben Mosey, won the same accolade last year and said they were pleasantly surprised to have made the shortlist once again.

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Emma said: “We found out about a month ago and it was a lovely surprise, particularly because we won last year and thought they might not shortlist us again.

Emma and Ben Mosey pictured with the award they won last year and are hoping for repeat success at the 2024 awards in Birmingham.Emma and Ben Mosey pictured with the award they won last year and are hoping for repeat success at the 2024 awards in Birmingham.
Emma and Ben Mosey pictured with the award they won last year and are hoping for repeat success at the 2024 awards in Birmingham.

"It is for large farm shop and we are amazed we are in that as we have had the business seven years and grown it quite a lot but are a small farm shop until last year so it is a bit surreal.”

The couple, Ben is a farmer’s son and Emma is a writer, took on the farm, which was then known as Minskip Farm Shop, after they had returned to the UK from travelling in Australia and Indonesia.

They have changed the business in that time and reduced the flock from 6,000 to 1,500, and then 500 after the outbreaks of avian flu over the last couple of years.

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They have opened the world’s first egg restaurant, stopped selling to supermarkets and now just supply their own shop and catering needs and have also opened Yard at Yolk which is a play barn for children in one of the old hen sheds.

The smaller flock is now housed in a mobile unit that is a little further away from the farm shop and restaurant and means that should bird flu be detected in the hens, it comes under a different farm number according to Defra and the farm shop and cafe can continue to trade.

Much of these changes were done last year with a lot of hard work but the couple say the award shortlist makes it worthwhile.

Emma said: “It does make it worthwhile and I love running the business but the recognition of a national award, particularly the Farm Shop & Deli Awards which is probably the most prestigious in the industry, is about the team really.

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"We have 35 people that work here and work really hard and it means a lot to them to be recognised by a national award body.”

Diversification has contributed to making their farm business viable and sustainable and Emma predicts that other similar sized businesses will have to do the same to survive or get bought up by larger farming corporations.

She added: “It will be interesting to see what happens with farming over the next few years. A survey says 49 per cent of farmers are planning on leaving the industry and things will go one of two ways.

"Farms will get much, much bigger as the larger farms swallow up smaller ones, or the smaller ones will have to diversify in the way that we have.”

Yolk Farm’s focus on developing the business over the next year is about educating customers, particularly children and young people about farming, animal welfare and food production.

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