The Hive JQ

The Hive is a community hub for Birmingham in an historic building, with an award-winning organic café and bakery, craft workshops, exhibitions and event spaces.

Students grow seasonal, organic-biodynamic food crops, herbs and flowers as part of their integrated Seed-to-Table/Table-to-Seed Curriculum.

They are involved in each process; growing, harvesting, preparation and cooking as well as serving meals and sitting down together with fellow students and staff to an organic lunch every day of the academic year.

In the Café and College we pride ourselves on using fresh, local produce. Each year the microfarm produces hundreds of kilos of vegetable and herbs just a few steps away, compared to the hundreds and sometimes thousands of food miles travelled by conventional food.

Worm Composting at New Standard Works

In the Hive Cafe and at Argent College. staff and students take their environmental responsibilities very seriously. Within the building, all food and green waste is selectively collected and composted.

Waste is taken up to the micro-farm and put in our Ridan-In-Vessel Compost Tumbler for 2 -3 weeks. Once complete, the compost then goes down to the basement, and into our customised Worm composter for 3 - 4 months, enriching it further.

The finished worm castings are returned to the vegetable beds on the rooftop to complete the cycle - creating nutrient-rich, organic soil for our produce to grow.

This cycle constitutes the "Table-to-Seed" part of our student curriculum, and is unique to the Ruskin Mill Trust educational provision.