When it’s just little old me working away, I can’t interrogate every single item of my ingredients’ supply chain. However, there are a few ways that I make sure the ingredients I buy have as little detriment to people as possible. So there are a couple of different accreditations/reassurances that I’m looking for.
All of my sugar is Fairtrade, from granulated and caster to light and dark brown. The Fairtrade badge means that food has been produced in a way that ensures good working conditions for farmers and fair prices for crops, and supports greater sustainability and environmentally friendly production processes. Nothing is perfect, but this is one of the best indications we have that food has been ethically produced. The chocolate I use will also either be Fairtrade or from sustainably farmed cocoa. I also make sure that my vanilla is responsibly sourced (and more broadly eco-friendly) from the fabulous team at LittlePod. The price of vanilla has increased for a number of reasons, and the industry is experiencing lots of theft and violence. Their #campaignforrealvanilla is so important, so do read more about them and why using real vanilla is the best way.
Finally, unlike some other cake decorators, and definitely unlike supermarket cakes, I add no preservatives, sweeteners or flavourings to my cakes (artificial or natural). They are as fresh and ‘pure’ as they can be. If you have a flavoured cake, let’s take raspberry for example, it comes entirely from real fruit. I also use an unrefined icing sugar , which means it is slightly ‘purer’, undergoing less processing (6 vs. 32 processes!). Being less refined also gives it a naturally caramelly flavour and colour, making it a luxurious, eco-friendly wedding cake.