Meet East London's radical experiment in food growing and community building offering a shop/cafe/meeting place and farm all-in one.
There’s a growing number of city lovers reshaping the way they source their food. 20 Dalston Lane in the heart of East London seems an odd address for a farm. But Dalston’s Farm: shop is literally a farm in a shop. The shop is now a shop/cafe/meeting place and farm all in one. It is home to hundreds of growing plants arranged in every setup imaginable from a backyard polytunnel to hydroponics setup where plants are fed by the fish. It is even home to a flock of rooftop living chickens.
Farm:shop is the brain child of three eco creatives, Andrew Merritt, Paul Smyth and Sam Henderson of designer agency Something & Son. Bringing together their knowledge in art, engineering and business they came up with the ingenious social initiative Farm in 2010, a concept which aims to encourage farming in the city and involves inspiring Londoners to grow their own food, fabric and medicine with the potential aim of selling it in the Farm:shop. Housed in a once derelict store, the shop grows-its-own and both sells what it produces and uses it in its shop café.
Londoners should definitely check this treasure out. In addition to being a fun and extremely welcoming place the Farm:shop also offers the best BLT and halloumi cheese sandwich in town!
Words: Magali Elali
Photography: Bart Kiggen
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