Food Fermenting Workshop

Saturday 12 May 2018

Spend a day in the breath-taking grounds of Sharpham Estate with Jon Howell, learning how to improve your immune system and gut health with the power of probiotic rich fermented foods.

Fermenting workshop at The Sharpham Trust

Ferments are highly nutritious and are an excellent way of storing food, with a compelling and complex flavour. On this workshop you will learn how to create nourishing ferments at home using a range of vegetables, explore how the fermentation process works to benefit your overall health and sample a variety of tasty fermented goods.

This event costs £45 per person for the day and is suitable for adults aged 16 and over. If you are looking for a course suitable for children, Click here to find out about our popular Family Forage Days.

Fermenting workshop at The Sharpham Trust

On this course you will learn:

•             The ways in which your gut bacteria help us throughout our lives, and how to introduce fermented foods into your diet in easy and accessible ways.

•             How the fermenting process works to make tasty foods from a variety of vegetables

•             About Probiotics and Prebiotics and why we need to incude both to stay healthy

•             About your body's Microbiome and how to look after it

•             How to prepare and maintain the right environment for 'good' bacteria to thrive in jars and in your bodies

•             How your immune system is linked to the diversity of your gut ecology

•             Common fermenting failures and how to avoid them

•             Some basic but really tasty fermenting recipes to get you started

•             How to use taste and timing to gauge when fermentation is ready

Examples of what you might expect to make:   

•             Sauerkraut

•             Kvass (a fermented drink – most likely from beetroot)

•             Fermented whole veg (e.g. carrot sticks)

•             Water Kefir (fermented drink)

Fermenting workshop at The Sharpham Trust

This day is for you if you are:

•             Keen to learn about nourishing, healing food

•             Interested in learning more about the natural world

•             Wanting to understand more about your health and wellbeing

•             Enthusiastic about learning new recipies and cooking

What should you bring?

•             A packed lunch 

•             Bottle of water

•             Waterproofs

•             Good comfy shoes or wellies

•             Paper and pen if you want to take notes

•             Camera if you want to take pictures

•             We will supply enough fresh organic veg for all the ferment types you'll be making, but if you'd like to add your own home grown (must be organic) or wild foraged produce them please bring it along

•             A few bail top jars if you have any at home.


Saturday 12th May 2018

The day runs from 10am to 4pm

Follow the signs to the woodland car park on entering the Sharpham Estate (at the top of the hill before descending steeply towards Sharpham House). Jon will meet you in the woodland kitchen, your base camp for the day, for an introduction and a cup of wild herbal tea.

This is followed by an introduction to the art of fermentation, how it works and why our bodies thrive from fermented foods.

We will learn by making a number of ferments together, using ingredients provided, using techniques as old as culture itself, but adding into the mix your own unique combinations of flavours.

We will each lunch together accompanied by a variety of fermented foods for you to sample - please bring along a packed lunch. 

At the end of the day we will close with final questions and a wild cup of something delicious.


The Kvass has been absolutely lush, as with the veggie sticks and the sauerkraut!! I cannot get over what a success they have been and the flavours, especially of the sauerkraut is amazing. Absolutely delicious  and so I am chuffed to bits about it all to be honest.

My little boy wasn’t really eating anything one day and then I opened the vegetable sticks and he couldn’t stop! We demolished the big jar I made in one sitting! Amazing. Addictive.

I learned a lot, tasted great food in a lovely environment and my gut bacteria feels happy!

I learnt a huge amount – am now very enthusiastic and hopeful about improving my own health and that of my family.

Jon is an extremely knowledgeable man but who pitches the course at your level in a way you understand.

Loads of stuff to take home.

Follow the signs to the woodland car park on entering the Sharpham Estate (at the top of the hill before descending towards Sharpham House). Jon will meet you in the woodland kitchen, your base camp for the day, for an introduction and a cup of wild herbal tea.

Click here for directions to The Sharpham Trust.

£45 per person for the day (age 16+), which includes materials and ingredients.

Jon Howell_Fermenting foods profile

Jon Howell_Fermenting foods profile

Jon is a nature connection guide, mentor and facilitator.

He creates safe spaces using natural settings as a mirror for our own inner growth and leads groups gently towards open-hearted, un-self-conscious realisation.  He is trained in group mentoring techniques and has many years' experience in rites of passage for men and boys and mental health recovery programmes. 

With a background as an engineer, Jon was head of Training and Global Customer Services with an international manufacturing company, but shifted priorities ten years ago knowing there was more to life. "Finding a more meaningful way to live and still manage to pay the bills is a real 21st century challenge requiring changing not less than everything". He now works with companies or individuals helping them to find a more authentic, purposeful way to go about their lives or business, preferably both.

Teaching Fermenting is one of a series of "How to" courses that Jon has developed in response to the question "What can I do?" This is the burning question as we awaken from the cultural slumber and wish to become more active but don't know where to start.  Jon has been keeping his family as healthy and as active as possible by making and eating fermented foods as a staple part of their diet.

Jon is also a wood carver, photographer, rock climbing coach and loving father and lives with his family in Devon.

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