So…we tentatively entered this years Dragon’s Glen at Lochaber Ideas Week (a local entrepreneur event organised by the Lochaber Chamber of Commerce). We entered with a local rye loaf, which we previously touched on in blog-posts here and here.
And we’ve been invited to pitch our idea at the Semi’s on 15th November 19:00 at the Moorings Hotel!
So we thought we’d share out pitch with our followers, so a) you can egg us on and b) you can throw us any ideas questions which might support our pitch.
Here’s our 3 minute video submission:-
And here’s the pitch proposal:-
The business proposal is to start growing rye grain in Lochaber and produce a Lochaber Rye loaf.
Doughies is a family partnership trading as a small sourdough micro-bakery out of a co-owned croft in Muirshearlich, Fort William. We’ve been trading for a few years now, and the focus has always been sourdough. There’s not a lot in our bread – a range of flours plus salt and water. Its real bread, the way it used to be. There is though a misnomer to branding our bread local – and that is the origin of the grain in our flour. Although we work with good stone ground milled flours from millers we trust & know by name, the truth is the vast proportion of the grain used in the flour in our bread comes from overseas, and has a heavy environmental footprint.
And for a lot of the loaves we do, that is inevitable as the highlands is not suited to growing high strength wheat. But that is not true of one of our most popular loaves – our 100% rye loaf.
Because you can grow rye in the Highlands. How do we know? Well a) geography says we can (we’re the same Latitude as the Eastern European rye belt), b) historically crofters in the highlands and islands used to grow a mixed landrace of oats, bere and rye grains, and c) we’ve tried it! – in 2016 we grew a stand of oats, and in in 2017 we grew a stand of rye.
So we want to start growing rye grain in Lochaber for bread production. But there’s in investment of time, skill development, energy and equipment to kick start a local grain movement. The proposal to kick start it is to do a community supported agriculture model – by getting 30 local people to invest in local rye bread supply for one year. We will then plant an acre of rye, grow it, harvest it, store it, mill it and bake it – and supply those 30 pioneers with a truly local loaf.
To find out more, join us at the Moorings on the 15th Nov as we go before the Dragons…..