Did you spot our April Fool's story 'revealing' a major farming breakthrough had been made here in Suffolk?

No, Ben Woolf of Oak House Farm in Sproughton is not actually growing rice in his fields.

Mr Woolf approached us with the idea for the gag, which we thought our readers would find amusing.

We hope you enjoyed the 'story'. For those that missed it, here it is in full:

A farmer based just outside of Ipswich has taken advantage of the wet weather of the last few months – by growing RICE in his fields.

Ben Woolf, of Oak House Farm in Sproughton, has been facing difficult conditions over the autumn and winter, like many others in the industry.

But he has taken the unusual step of growing a crop unfamiliar to Suffolk's fields, with rice being one of the most widely grown cereals in the world.

In excess of 775million metric tonnes of rice are produced every year, with more than 90% coming from Asia, but is not a common sight in the East of England.

Ipswich Star: Ben Woolf with the riceBen Woolf with the rice (Image: Ben Woolf)

Mr Woolf said he is the first farmer to begin growing rice in Suffolk.

He said he planted the rice seeds – purchased from a local supermarket – in a greenhouse prior to them being transplanted as seedlings into the field.

His attention has now turned to how best to prepare the wet ground for planting.

Traditionally, oxen are used in rice production in many countries as they are more suited to wet ground than tractors and heavy machinery.

Alongside its arable crops, Oak House Farm has a herd of Red Poll and Shorthorn cattle, primarily aimed at beef production.

Included within the herd is retired Shorthorn bull, Dundee, who at 14 years old would be suited to a new career as a draft animal.

Ipswich Star: Ben Woolf with Dundee, ready for his new roleBen Woolf with Dundee, ready for his new role (Image: Ben Woolf)

Dundee is now practicing for his new role and has become very partial to a handful of rice as he works.

Mr Woolf said: "We have got some areas of our fields that have been waterlogged since last October and we were considering what we could grow.

"The only crop that we came up with is rice, and we thought that locally grown rice could generate a lot of interest."

Mr Woolf said shop manager Georgina Woolf is sceptical about the plans, but is looking forward to add any harvested rice to the range of home-reared and locally sourced products in the farm butchery.