“I try to use organic things,” says Fulton, a long-time supporter of Greenpeace, an activist against genetically modified foods and a great worrier – now warrior – about climate change and the future of the planet. “I like organic sugar and organic tea. And you can be quite insistent. Are you organic in your own home, Tim?”
“Look, we try to be,” he replies. “It’s only in the last 12 months that we’ve stopped buying meat and vegetables at the supermarket; well, perhaps two or three years ago I stopped buying meat there because we found a very good butcher . . . He knows where all of his produce comes from. He can tell me how they’ve lived and all the rest. All of his beef is grass-fed, which I much prefer.
“We also have a farmers’ market on a Thursday. There’s an old Italian bloke and I just buy whatever he’s got because it’s grown about a kilometre away from where we buy it and it’s all wonderful. But I’m just so busy I don’t get the time to get down there all the time.”
“Yes, but you’re at least conscious of the difference,” Fulton says. “Eating a chicken that’s been raised in a battery is like eating a bit of pap,” she says. The flavour of a chicken that has scratched around a bit is absolutely different . . . it’s the same if you make carrot soup from organic carrots. And if a tomato doesn’t taste like a tomato what’s the point?
“More than that issue, I think it’s ridiculous that we expect asparagus nine months of the year. What’s the matter with waiting for those few short magical weeks? Same with raspberries. It’s just so gorgeous, it’s like a fairy coming down and saying ‘twinkle twinkle’. It’s lovely.
“What we used to have was that wonderful anticipation of the seasons and now the seasons don’t matter any more. What are we taking away from ourselves? What are we trading when we don’t have chickens that taste like chicken?
“A lot of the big supermarkets do respond to people asking, asking, asking (for organic produce). You’ve got to go over and over and over . . . where the local people go at it they can make a difference.”