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About Us

From a small holding into a large business farming over 600 hectares, we've got a story to tell.

Watts Farm is a family-run business which covers 10 sites in Kent, Essex and Bedfordshire. We farm over 600 hectares of land, growing 60 different crops and employing nearly 200 people. We supply over 500 restaurants (70% are within the fine dining sector) as well as working with major retailers, the NHS, other packers and a range of wholesalers.

  • 1952

    Our Story

    Donald Watts was a man that did things properly. From mucking out pigs to pulling rhubarb and planting strawberries he'd nearly always be seen in a shirt and tie. He made a great success of the farm. And, in fact, became colloquially known as the Kent King of Rhubarb.
  • 1970

    Our Story

    Donald’s wife, Joan, would sell much of the produce by the side of the road and eventually went on to run a green grocer's shop in Pet’s Wood.

  • 1990

    Our Story

    Avril, one of Donald’s and Joan’s daughters, took over the farm when her father died. She started trialling some herbs such as parsley and coriander. This was a new departure as very few farmers were growing herbs but London restaurants were in need of them. It was the start of an exciting speciality…

  • 2000

    Our Story

    Joe Cottingham joined our farm in 2000. He continued to expand our range and raised the farm’s productivity by introducing a wide range improvements. And his efforts were rewarded in 2008 when he was named Young Grower of the Year, aged just 34.

  • Today

    Our Story

    Today we grow over 100 varieties of vegetables, fruits, salads and herbs. Our interest in and development of chillies has meant that we’re one of the UK’s largest chilli growers!

Our history

Just after World War 1, Kent County Council offered smallholdings for soldiers returning from the war. Somewhat surprisingly, there wasn't much take up and the opportunity opened up to anyone that wanted to become a tenant farmer. Donald Watts, decided this was his chance. He'd grown up on a farm and had always dreamt of running his own.more

Just after World War 1, Kent County Council offered smallholdings for soldiers returning from the war. Somewhat surprisingly, there wasn't much take up and the opportunity opened up to anyone that wanted to become a tenant farmer. Donald Watts, decided this was his chance. He'd grown up on a farm and had always dreamt of running his own. He made a great success of the farm - bringing a natural knowledge of working the land with him.less

Donald and Joan had three daughters who would all help out when needed. Avril, his youngest daughter, was a keen horsewoman and loved the farming way of life. As Donald got older and frailer, Avril ran the farm herself. When he was in his early 60's, Donald sadly passed away. As the farm was in his name, it looked like Avril and her mother were going to lose it.more

Donald and Joan had three daughters who would all help out when needed. Avril, his youngest daughter, was a keen horsewoman and loved the farming way of life. As Donald got older and frailer, Avril ran the farm herself. When he was in his early 60's, Donald sadly passed away. As the farm was in his name, it looked like Avril and her mother were going to lose it. But Avril was going to have none of this. After a lengthy process, she went on to become the first female life tenant of Kent County Council Farm. The farm went from strength to strength.less

Avril invested in a lorry and had expanded into potatoes, cabbages and some cereals. But as is the way with farming, there are good years and not so good years. And it's rarely enough to be "just" a good farmer. It's crucial to possess other business skills too. "While it may be said that every woman needs a good husband," Says Avril, "It's also true that every farmer needs a good salesman!"more

Avril invested in a lorry and had expanded into potatoes, cabbages and some cereals. But as is the way with farming, there are good years and not so good years. And it's rarely enough to be "just" a good farmer. It's crucial to possess other business skills too. "While it may be said that every woman needs a good husband," Says Avril, "It's also true that every farmer needs a good salesman!" Avril met both in Mike. A while after their first meeting at a National Farmers Union conference, Mike joined the farm. Together they built a stronger business - increasing sales, production and continuing to invest in new machinery. Avril remembers the bagging machine they first bought, "It could bag up to 8 packs of spinach a minute, now the machine we have bags up to 40 and there's no need to do any hand labelling!" says Avril. "Farming is a lot of hard work, but keeping an eye on the market and continuing to trial niche products has helped us get to where we are today. And long may it continue!"less

you'll find us:

  • Offering highly specialised varieties

    We specialise in producing innovative new varieties, so you can find what you're looking for all in one place.

  • Able to supply produce year round

    Check out our product catalogue for a full listing.

  • Easy to do business with

    We’re a friendly team here who will do our best to make sure you have everything you need.

  • Assured and Accredited

    As you'd expect, our commitment to quality is backed up by the highest independent, industry evaluation.

  • Competitively priced

    As well as competitive, daily market prices, do talk to us about our fixed weekly and monthly options.

  • Supplying quality ingredients

    We know reputations live and die by the quality of produce - whether that's ours or yours. The premium quality of our produce is something that is always prioritised here at Watts.