Terms and Conditions
Island wild food offers organised public foraging walks or private foraging events based on the following:
1. Health and safety:
By booking onto a course you agree to follow my instructions and safety precautions regarding wild food and the environment you are exploring. I will explain how to identify edible (and non edible) food but you are responsible for anything you choose to eat. Please check with me before you put anything in your mouth or take it home with you. I will often provide visual information to support your learning and will encourage you to take photographs but it is essential to understand that some species of plants and flower vary in how they look throughout the year and depending on what cycle of growth they are at so if in doubt do not eat. After a foraging walk, eat foraged food at your own risk. I do not accept any liability for this or if you inform or educate others (that have not attended a walk) of the edibility of a foraged item. I will carry out a risk assessment of all sites prior to each walk to deem suitability and safety but you are responsible for looking out where you are walking.
All foraging walks will go ahead in typical weather conditions (yes, wind and rain). If there are severe weather warnings, I will make a judgment call as soon as possible and in the unlikely event of cancellation will offer you a date on another future foraging course (please note this may not be for the exact original location/environment you initially intended for the course to be at). You are advised to check the weather on the morning of your course and dress accordingly. Even if it is sunny, suitable footwear such as walking boots or trainers are recommended. It would also be useful to bring waterproofs, sun cream, a sun hat and wear clothing that covers your limbs to protect yourself from bramble scratches/nettle stings or tick/insect bites. It is also advisable to bring some water although refreshments will always be available at the end of your walk.
3. Fitness to attend:
My ‘walks’ are essentially a gentle stroll; there is less emphasis on the actual walking but more the stopping, standing and chatting as I explain our findings and we discuss each foraged plant. Walks usually are less that 2miles but can be shorter than this. Many of my walks are on all terrains ‘off road’ such as muddy slopes, shingle/sandy beaches and wet grass. Walks may involve crossing styles or some gentle clambering as we veer off the well walked track to find something a little more hidden. If you are physically mobile and have a good level of fitness you will be fine. I will endeavour to try and accommodate any access or mobility difficulties but please discuss this with me first prior to booking as the decision is ultimately yours. Once you have booked your course it will be assumed that you (and everyone else you have booked for) can manage the route physically.
If you have concerns do contact me prior to booking to discuss further. As all walks are on the Isle of Wight countryside, by its very nature the walk may be open to hazards from the environment and weather (see above).
Children are welcome to attend but must be supported by a responsible adult. Children actually make excellent foragers as they have amazing attention to detail and are usually closer to ground level so spot items very quickly.
The adult who brings them has full responsibility for them for the duration of the walk and it is their responsibility to ensure that they are supervised at all times and listen to guidelines around safe foraging. If you intend to bring young children and babies a sling or kid rucksack may be a suitable carrying option due to the terrain of most of my routes. If you have any further questions around this or concerns please contact me directly prior to booking on a course.
5. Will we actually find anything?
The very nature of foraging is rooted in its seasonality and nuances of the particular year (I cant guarantee another ‘Beast from the East’ wont come a week before the planned course and freeze everything prematurely!) However there is always something to find. I won’t state how many items we will actually identify but it could range between 5-20 depending on a variety of factors. The surprise is part of the process for everyone!
Spring is usually good for seaweeds, spring greens and fresh growth.
Summer is the best time for seeds, fruits, and flowers.
Autumn is the best time to forage hedgerow berries, fruits, nuts, and seaweeds.
The above however is just a rough guide and foraging may also be influenced by the environment we are in (meadow, field, forest or beach). I honest couldn’t pick a favourite or typical location as interesting I always seem to find something unexpected.
6. Eating food!
On all my courses I like to bring along some tasters (usually I will bring something savoury, something sweet and a drink). This is an addition to the educational foraging aspect of my course and meant as a supplement to inspire you and give you an insight into how wild food can tastes and to give you ideas of how to cook with it. This is very much rustic homemade food either pre-made in my kitchen before the course or as part of the course itself (for example we often make wild garlic pesto or wild sorrel hummus on site with our foraged findings). It is all food that I eats myself at home. Due to the very nature of foraging and that we are trying new food which has flavours and tastes unique to anything you may have eaten before, consumption is at your own risk and discretion. Whilst extremely rare it is possible to have an adverse reaction to new food types so it is advisable to only try a small amount of any new food to see how your body responds to it. I will explain what ingredients are in each taster so that those attending the walk can make their own informed choices.
7. Dietary requirements:
When booking onto the course it is the responsibility of the person booking for both themselves and/or others to inform me of any necessary dietary requirements or food allergies or intolerances. Most of the food I will prepare will be vegetarian or vegan, both of which diets can be accommodated for. I will also need to know if you are gluten free, coeliac or have any food allergies or needs. Further discussion may be needed to ensure suitability for participants. For example if you have a severe nut allergy it would not be advisable to attend a walk where nuts may be encountered. This is your responsibility and you attend the walks and eat the food tasters provided at your own risk. Please see above for further information regarding tasting unfamiliar food.
8. Medical Information:
It is essential that you inform me of any health related medical needs that may impact your safety on the walk (such as, but not limited to asthma, heart disease, COPD, diabetes, epilepsy and allergies) and also bring any necessary medical aids, such as your inhaler or an epi-pen (please let me know where these are at the beginning of the walk). Please also inform me if you are pregnant. This will not impact your ability to attend a walk but just ensure your safety and allow me to tailor information accordingly (for example discussion of plants that should not be consumed if you are pregnant). This information will be kept confidential and not shared with anybody else.
9. Booking onto a course:
Your place is only guaranteed once full payment has been received. I also require the full names and email addresses for all attendees and names and ages of the children attending. Pertinent medical and dietary needs is also essential (see above). A phone number must also be provided with the booking. I will never pass on this confidential information to other parties. I will use the information to correspond prior to the walk and send out an email with essential details before the walk and after the walk detailing foraged finds. Correspondence will primarily be via email but should I urgently need to contact prior to the walk I will text or call you.
10. Price and numbers:
In order to keep the walks personal, educational and bespoke, I allows a maximum of 12 places on all courses (Children under 10 are an addition to this number but will be limited to a maximum of 3 per walk). The price of my walks is reflective of a pre-recce of the site, the time spent on food preparation for the walk, the walk itself, and correspondence before and after the walk. I will try to find walks near bus routes and with options for free parking nearby – if additional costs are needed I will inform you prior to booking. Cars are parked at your own risk.
My walks were very popular last year and every walk I put on sold out. To avoid disappointment please book onto a course and provide payment at the same time to secure your place(s).
11. If you really want to attend but finances are tight:
I think foraging is great and should be something we are all taught the skills to go out and do and gain confidence in, within the realms of our own comfort zone. It can open our eyes to the world around us and provide opportunities for us to easily supplement our diet without it costing the earth. It can also improve our wellbeing and awareness of the natural world around us. If you can walk to the supermarket and pick a few wild leaves on the way then great.
With this in mind I will offer two discounted spaces on each walk to those on a lower income and/or benefits. I will not ask for evidence of this or discuss it on the walk but I will let it be at your own discretion. Foraging should be inclusive to everyone.
Please note that if selecting this option at the time of booking, you are limited to only one foraging walk (at this reduced price) in the year to allow the opportunity for others to also book on at this reduced rate. If you have any concerns or questions about this please contact me directly.
Gift vouchers are available from this year. They must be redeemed by the expiry date on the voucher (November 2020). Ownership of a gift voucher does not 100% ensure attendance on a course. All foraging walks are from March – November but may sell out in advance so it is suggested that if you receive a gift voucher you book onto your course as soon as possible. This is because I only offer a finite number of courses (roughly one a month except August) but once they are booked up, they are booked up. It is the recipient’s responsibility to book themselves onto a foraging walk in good time to redeem their voucher.
If buying the voucher for a present it is worth noting that although the expiry date is at the end of 2020 year, I will only run foraging walks until November.
Vouchers are non refundable and not redeemable for cash in any way.
13. Cancellation policy:
If you cancel up to a 4 weeks prior to your booked course, I will offer a full refund (minus £5 admin fee for cancellation).
If you cancel between 2-4 weeks prior to the course date, I will offer a 50% refund. If you cancel less than 2 weeks prior to your course date the course is non-refundable. If there are extenuating circumstances, I may choose (at my discretion) to offer a partial refund or postpone your place to a future course within a year of cancellation.
In the unlikely event that I needs to cancel a course due to extreme adverse weather or illness, I will inform you in as timely a manner as possible (although this could be as late as the day itself). In these rare cases, I will offer a full refund or transfer your place to a later course in full discussion with you. I am unable to reimburse for any other costs incurred such as travel or accommodation.
If traveling from the mainland to the Island, it is essential that you manage this in a timely manner. Ferries are often delayed or cancelled due to bad weather conditions.
As a participant on a foraging course you consent to the right to be photographed and for these photos to appear on social media. If you do not wish photographs to be used please inform me before or during your walk.