Liz Earle MBE on wellbeing, farming and being a mum in business

on 09 October 2017.

Liz_Earle_Wellbeing

Best known for her passion for natural health and wellbeing, Liz Earle is a best-selling author, established TV presenter, entrepreneur and a farmer. She lives with her husband and five children on their pasture-fed organic farm in the West Country.

She talks to Hungerford Townsite about her latest business venture, Liz Earle Wellbeing, how she manages her work-life balance and the simple joys of life on her working farm.

This exclusive interview highlights the current issues with intensive farming, tips to succeed as a mum in business and a love affair with nature that has lasted a lifetime for Liz.

The best part of Autumn on the farm?

“Autumn is my favourite time of year for foraging and using all the seasonal goodies for autumnal harvest feasts. Spiced pears and roasted pumpkins are two of my current favourite autumn recipes using seasonal produce. I love being a hunter-gatherer in the hedgerows, bringing in armfuls of mossy twigs and berries to add to a flower arrangement, making sloe-gin from the sloe-laden bushes or rosehip syrup from crimson hips.”

What started your love affair with natural ingredients?

“I inherited my love of nature and wild flowers from my father who was in the Royal Navy. The garden was his sanctuary when he came home and my earliest memories are of him in his vegetable patch, digging, planting and sowing. He is a practical man, so all his plants had to have a purpose such as medicinal, good to eat or scented. I’ve grown up with that in my DNA.”

What is important to you about sustainable farming?

“I’ve been talking about the importance of living sustainably for over thirty years and now I am a working farmer, I really feel I can really walk the walk. I’m passionate about finding alternatives to intensive farming which isolates animals in barns, living solely on hard feeds and soya concentrates.

As a working farmer in the West Country I’m able to put my beliefs into practice on my own farm and rear 100% grass-fed beef, which is better for the cattle, the environment, soil fertility and healthier for us as consumers too.”

What can we do to support local farmers?

“Britain needs more animals on the land ­ fertilising and enriching the soil to preserve both our countryside and sustainable food production.

If possible source straight from the farmer, such as local farmer’s markets but if not, I also am a big fan of The Co-op, which has committed to selling fresh meat exclusively from British farms, the first national retailer to do this. It will all make a real difference.”

How did it feel stepping away from the brand you created over two decades?

“It felt exciting to return to my roots as writer and researcher with a focus on nutrition, food and all aspects of healthy living in my magazine Liz Earle Wellbeing.

Liz_Earle_Wellbeing I had been promoting Liz Earle Beauty Co for 7 years as their global ambassador, following the company sale in 2010 and the time felt right to move away from that role and focus on my primary passions of health and wellbeing.

I truly believe that beauty and health go hand-in-hand with eating well, and I felt a drive to raise awareness of the small changes we can easily make to look good and feel even better.”

What’s the secret to succeeding as a mum in business?

“I am a compulsive list maker and rely on a series of small notebooks in which I try to write down everything so I don’t forget. I find forgetting something important amidst the juggling can compound any guilt, so being a compulsive list-maker seems to work for me!

I also make sure I get the important family dates such as school plays, concerts, holidays and parents’ evenings into the diary at the beginning of the year and then schedule work events around them wherever possible. That way family always comes first.”

Is there such a thing as work/life balance?

“I’m often asked if women in business can truly have it all and the answer is - it depends how much you want. I believe that a successful balance is getting most of it right. If most of it gets done and most people are happy most of the time, I would consider that to be a success.”

You can find out more about Liz and her fantastic quarterly Magazine “Liz Earle Wellbeing” by visiting her website www.lizearlewellbeing.com which is packed full of sensational recipes, expert beauty advice and wellbeing wisdom.

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