My Perfect Picnic – Jersey’s Best

John tells us about his best picnic, showcasing the diversity and quality of Jersey’s local products.

His picnic serves as a reminder that our choices, such as supporting local producers, directly contribute to the ongoing conservation of Jersey’s stunning natural beauty.

John Garton, Genuine Jersey.

I’m John Garton, the chief executive of Genuine Jersey Products Association. 

We boast a loyal and enthusiastic membership of 180 producers who all have the ambition of promoting the diversity and quality of local produce. While some of our members ensure the survival of Jersey’s heritage and traditions, others are at the forefront of introducing pioneering farming methods, new crops or exploring previously untapped international markets. The best thing about our Membership is that when you buy items carrying our mark you know that they have been either grown, reared, caught or made on the Island.

Q – What’s your favourite picnic location in the Park, to enjoy Jersey’s best products?

The Jersey National Park offers up so many incredible location options, but for me it would have to be the slip at Le Braye, sheltered when the wind is blowing but you still get a great view of the Bay and it’s easy to cycle to too, which for me is a bonus.

Q – Can you describe your ideal picnic spread that showcases Jersey’s ‘best’?

Not one to shy away from a challenge, I set about creating the perfect picnic using only locally sourced products and ingredients. I wish I could say it was a greater challenge than it was but at this time of year we’re spoilt for choice thanks to the hard work of our local farmers, there is fantastic seasonal produce in abundance. Starting in St Helier we have three incredible bakeries within our Membership. Dandy on Colomberie, Four on Bath Street and Vienna in the Central Market, all of them offering up delicious baked goods which make the perfect base for any picnic basket.

Seafood would probably be the star of the show. You can’t get much more Jersey than buying a cooked crab from any of our local fisherman and picking it yourself whilst drinking a glass of something chilled and admiring the views within the National Park. 

But why stop there when you’ve also got a huge list of vegetables on offer, including our most famous, the Jersey Royal. Now that the export season is over we get to enjoy all of the Royals our farmers are producing on the Island. You’ll notice they’re a little bigger which means they’re full of flavour and simply perfect boiled in water with some Jersey Sea Salt from St Catherine’s Bay and topped with the yellowest of Jersey Dairy Butter. My choice of salads can be made from seasonal products you will find in a number of hedge veg boxes or on the shelves of our local supermarkets.

John Garton’s Perfect Picnic…

– Chargrilled courgette ribbons dressed with lemon, mint and chill

– Tomato, red onion and basil salad

– Roasted za’atar aubergines 

– Roasted peppers

– Freshly picked leaves simply dressed

– Padron peppers, they’re starting to get a little feistier as the season progresses

– Mayonnaise made from local eggs (we sadly don’t have an oil producer yet)

– Tzatziki using local yoghurt and cucumber

Q – How does supporting local producers contribute to the conservation efforts in Jersey National Park?

By supporting local producers, you are ensuring that the Island’s characteristic landscape continues to be preserved and that the industry remains sustainable. 

Buying local and fresh produce means we can reduce excessive and expensive packaging – all you need is a shopping bag or basket! Good farming methods also help preserve the natural environment and keep Jersey looking amazing

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