Yorkshire Outdoor- a partnership of Yorkshire farmers is celebrating clinching its first regional listing with Asda, which has embraced the brand as part of its local sourcing campaign.
The launch of Yorkshire Outdoor is particularly timely, as celebrity chef Jamie Oliver announced a new campaigning television programme called Jamie Saves Our Bacon. In the 90-minute programme, Oliver, who previously declared war on battery-fed chickens and the poor quality of school dinners, attempts to get viewers to buy British pork.
"The British pig industry is on its knees. Our farmers say that 70% of the pork we import is from countries with lower welfare standards than ours and would have been illegal to produce here.
"All our farmers want is a level playing field with Europe. The support of the British public, as well as government and retailers, is critical in deciding the future, possibly the very survival, of our pig industry," said Oliver.
Mark and Grant Burton of Wilberfoss are part of the team behind Yorkshire Outdoor. 5th generation farmers, they've had a loyal following at Farmers Markets across the county for their locally produced sausages and bacon. "Our main point of difference from our competitors is full traceability. All of our meat comes directly from our farm using the finest outdoor reared breeds."
Much of the bacon sold in supermarkets as British, may only have only been cured and packaged in the UK from foreign pork. We make our sausages and cure our bacon in a newly built factory just 20 miles from where the pigs are reared. We even use feed sourced from Yorkshire to reduce food miles and boost the local farming economy," explains Mark Burton.
"We had felt for a long time we wanted to take our successful Farmers Market business to a wider market. Supermarkets have really embraced local-sourcing initiatives and they wanted our high welfare, high quality, fully traceable product. We're delighted with the ASDA listing, we've had very encouraging initial sales reports," explained Mark.
"When you buy our sausages and bacon, you can rest easy that the animals have felt the sun on their backs and got their snouts stuck into a good bit of Yorkshire soil.
"We are members of the RSPCA's Freedom Food Assurance Scheme, which gives us a better product, our sausages taste better because our pigs have been free to forage and roam on a varied diet. You won't find any imported meat passed off as British produce with us, we're Yorkshire farmers through and through."