Our Duchy Originals from Waitrose pig farmers make sure that their standards of animal husbandry meet not just our high standards, but also those of either the Soil Association, Organic Farmers and Growers or the Organic Food Federation. We know everything about our pigs, from their breed and traceability to what they have for breakfast each morning. Even their feed is organic: prepared by a local mill using natural ingredients.
More stories on Duchy Originals Products
Nov '10 24
Nov '10 24
This year in Cardiff, Duchy Originals and Waitrose cheese won two prestigious categories at the British Cheese Awards. Our Trevarrian Organic Brie was awarded Best Soft White Cheese and the award for Best PDO cheese went to the Waitrose Denhay Farmhouse Mature Cheddar. And if you're wondering what PDO stands for, it's Protected Designation of Origin. Cornish Country Larder were especially pleased to win the award for their Trevarrian Organic Brie as they've only recently become a Duchy Originals supplier. To create their cheese, they combined traditional techniques with new to craft a full-flavoured Brie from pasteurised organic Cornish milk.
Oct '10 20
At this year's Soil Association Food Festival in Bristol, the judges were faced with 600 different products. But as they nibbled, it was Duchy Originals that captured their taste buds time after time. To start, the panel, featuring organics producer Jo Wood and cheese maker, Alex James tried the morsels of Duchy Originals sausages on offer. The verdict? Both our Cumberland Ring and Pork & Leek sausages were Commended. Next it was the turn of the condiments, and pretty soon the judges were heartily enjoying the Duchy Originals Ploughman's Chutney and Mustard with Honey - both were Commended, with our Onion Marmalade and Damson Preserve being Highly Commended.
Oct '10 20
Handmade by the Holden family, the name Hafod is pronounced 'Havod' and means summer place or pasture. And that's just where we make our cheese - Bwlchwernen Fawr, a small dairy farm on the Welsh west coast. Although our set-up is fairly simple: we own just enough cows to make the milk to make the cheese right on the farm, the origins of Hafod are complex. Its taste and texture are indicative of the skills of local cheesemaker, the late Dougal Campbell who learnt his craft in the Swiss Alps before returning to make his cheese T'yn Grug. Dougal then went onto train many local cheesemakers, including Simon Jones who helped us start our dairy in 2005. By using his recipe for Lincolnshire Poacher as a starting point, we finally started making cheese in August 2007.
Nov '08 14
I've been the Duchy Home Farm dairy herd manager for two years. It's my job is to make sure we're producing the best quality for our Duchy Originals Milk and to ensure that our Ayrshire cows and calves are looked after to the highest possible standards. The average life of a conventional dairy cow is less than five years while the average age of our Ayrshire dairy cows is nearly twice that. This is because our cows produce about half as much milk as Holsteins and so are put under a lot less stress. Cows are not machines! Each of our cows has a name which starts with the prefix Duchy so, for example, we have Duchy Buttermilk, Duchy Daisy. Each cow also has a pedigree certificate and passport with a number which must correlate to the cow's ear tag number - this means that we have complete traceability of all our animals. Click on read more to hear about Mark's typical day...
Jul '08 9
The other day Guy Tullberg and some members of his family and staff came and had a picnic on the edge of our mustard crop. Guy is the MD of Tracklements, the company which produces the Duchy Originals Wholegrain Mustard. Not surprisingly, they brought along a selection of their delicious mustards to accompany the cold snacks. It was rather nice to have a picnic all together and it's always interesting to taste some of Guy's new mustards. Tracklements are always coming up with some great tastes and it's nice as a farmer to see the end product.
Jun '08 4
We're grading last year's carrots which came out of the earth in October/November. They've been stored at 3 degrees in a refrigerated vegetable store. They go into our vegetable boxes and we also sell them to other box schemes. The carrots are also used in the Duchy Originals vegetable crisps. We planted most of our potatoes three weeks ago. We have five varieties: Cara, Cosmos, Robinta, Sarpo Mira and Remarka. The reason we grow so many varieties is that it never pays to have all your eggs in one basket. Some varieties will do better than others in a given year.