Good gift guide
Tuesday, 1st December 2020 by Chen
ethical gifts farmers market

If you want to keep it ethical and sustainable this Christmas, there are loads of fantastic local businesses and social enterprises to support. 

We thought we'd share a few of our favourites.

Check our our top books about food, farming and changing the world. We have updated the list with some extra suggestions since we first published it.

Stop press:  Made in Hackney are offering GC members 20% off all their online cooking classes in December. Coming up soon: vegan cheeseboard, Jamaican Feast and Thai street food, with many more to follow. Just use the code COOKVEG when you book. Code also applies when booking for MiH's Wild Food Walk on 19 December.

Make your own Christmas wreath with a kit from St Mary's church. Email to order then collect from the centre. £10 each.


Farmers' market stalls

Come along to St Paul's Church every Saturday until 19 December and treat yourself to thoughtfully produced organic food for the holidays or buy some for friends and family.

Meat from Galileo Farm. Complete an order form and hand it in at the market, or email Fabienne and pre-order for collection.

Fresh and smoked fish including smoked organic salmon from Yorwarths.

A range of award-winning cheeses including blue, Merry Wyfe and smoked mozzarella from Bath Soft Cheese.

Infused (or plain) ghee (plus raw milk, butter, beef annd yoghurt) from Hook & Son.

Mince pies and lots more from Aston's Bakehouse.

Honey, beeswax and candles from Eric at Honey Hydrant, Henry at Becontree Bees and Tim Cowen.

Truffles, salted caramels, mixed collections and gift cards from Niko B Organic Chocolates.

Preserves and ceramics from Alison Bond (every Saturday till 19 December).

ceramic bowls organic jam Christmas

Freh fruit, preserves, pickles and juices from Peach & Pippin.

Radical tea towels from Elspeth, who sells them to buy phonecards for refugees. (12 and 19 December only)



Absent friends

PaMa can't come to the market because they've been shielding since March, but you can buy their krauts, pickles and sauces online. Plus herb salts, bags, Krautrock T-shirts and gift cards. (And they plant 2 trees for each order they receive too!)

The Stour Valley Lavender Company are shielding too, so we won't see any of their lavender goodies, marmalade, candles or beauty products this year. But you can order from them by email.

Hempen are still producing CBD and other hemp products, but unfortunately the hemp is no longer grown on their Oxfordshire farm.

Olivocracy, a Hackney-based team who source rich and punchy organic and biodynamic olive oils and vinegars from small Italian producers, are offering GC members a 10% discount on much of their range. Log in using this link to see the discounted prices. 


Support people changing the food system

Landworkers Alliance 2021 calendar, featuring anther 12 beautiful, original lino cuts by Rosanna Morris.

Permaculture Association - membership, manual, courses T-shirts. Learn about and promote farming that regenerates people and communities.

Real Bread campaign - cookbooks, T-shirts, bags and more for the sourdough lover or soon-to-be baker in your life.


Local crafts and skills

Brush up your cooking skills with online classes from Made in Hackney

e5 Bakehouse have taken all their courses online for the time being. Choose from a range of sourdough courses, flatbreads, fermentation and jam-making. is a craft studio in Hackney Central that offers sewing, weaving and knitting courses and sells mending kits and craft materials.

House of Buckley, based in Woodberry Down, make vegan candles and scents and offer candle-making workshops.

Pap Yay is a Hackney sart-up that makes quality sustainable toys.


Local unpackaged shops

Get Loose at Hackney City Farm

Re:Store at Hackney Downs

Food for All on Cazenove Road

Mother Earth at Newington Green


Also we recommend the Living Wage Gift Guide - listing a wide range of products and ideas from people who pay their staff fairly.


And after all that, you might want to check out the Permaculture Association's guide to avoiding seasonal access.