British-grown beans available for purchase this World Pulse Day

New varieties of Britain’s favourite pulse are available for purchase this World Pulse Day (10 Feb). These UK Registered beans (URBeans) were created by Professor Eric Holub as part of his work to diversify British cooking using home-grown ingredients.

The URBeans varieties are named after iconic figures from the Stratford and Coventry areas:
- Capulet Bean, left - Inspired by the Capulet family from Shakespeare’s "Romeo and Juliet," this is possibly one of the most famous beans in the UK now, as it’s recently been tinned for the first time in a baked-bean style.
- Godiva Bean, right - This blonde bean has taken its name from Coventry’s Lady Godiva and has recently been prepared by cooks and taste-tested by kids in six Midlands primary schools as part of BeanMeals, a ’Transforming UK Food System’ research project.

A ready-to-eat Godiva Bean Chilli jacket potato is available from the University of Warwick’s campus SPUD van , launched last year as the first sustainable food offering on campus to move away from ultra-processed foods. The van’s design has been created by University of Warwick food historian, Professor Rebecca Earle - to celebrate the history of the potato and bring it to life.

A dry bean mix of Godiva and Capulet will go on trial sale this weekend from Zero Store shops in Stratford-on-Avon and Leamington Spa. Zero Store launched at the height of the pandemic and provides a friendly and educational place to buy everyday grocery items, from dry food ingredients to cleaning products, using your own containers, and helping you reduce plastic waste.

Bean creator, Professor Eric Holub from the University of Warwick, said : "To enhance public health, it’s imperative to foster stronger connections between chefs and farmers in Britain. While our traditional assortment of fresh produce, grains, and legumes is vital, it alone isn’t enough.

Pulses play a crucial role in providing essential nutrients like protein and fibre, making it essential to prioritise their growth within the UK for both dietary and environmental reasons. Pulses have a low carbon footprint, great biodiversity, water efficiency and soil health benefits. They also have great health benefits, including lowering cholesterol."

Owner of Zero Store, Charlie Demetriou said: "When Eric first mentioned this to me last year, I was super keen to be a part of it. It’s been a tricky 18 months for small retailers, so we are delighted to be part of such an exciting project whilst appreciating the years of work that have gone into it."

"Cooking and processing your own dry beans, you can save yourself a tonne of money. I love the fact they’ve gone with those names, too. It ties it in to the local area, also it’s fun and memorable, I think it’ll help customers to relate to them."