Sister Julie Newman told a local radio host that she was “very upset” after a group of thieves broke into a convent garden “in the dead of the night” and purloined an entire field’s worth of Brussel sprouts. Brussel sprouts are biennial and take two years to reach maturity. Sister Newman said the theft was a huge setback for those who tended to the sprouts over the last two years.
“We had just been saying that we’d start harvesting this weekend for the farm shop and then continue harvesting right up until Christmas,” she told independent.ie. “We went up this morning, and they were all gone – completely stripped – the stalks and everything,”
She also believes her stolen crop will now be sold as high end organic produce for the Christmas market but is less concerned about the financial loss, estimated at around €300. “It’s not just the monetary value. It’s when you think of the effort that people went to in caring for them. I feel sorry for our staff. They have minded them and cared for them all along, and someone came in the dead of the night and stole all of them.”
According to Sister Newman, the farm has seen a bit of minor pilfering over the years but not nearly on such a large scale as the sprout heist.
“We would have the odd bit of pilfering of potatoes and onions, but this was deliberate. It wasn’t just someone looking for a few vegetables for their dinner.”
Not only did the thieves escape with the sprouts, they took a little pride with them.
“We were up there yesterday admiring the Brussels sprouts which we have on an eighth of an acre.”