Glastonbury Festival meat supplier has another successful year

Jon Thorner's reported another successful year as Glastonbury's main meat supplier
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Glastonbury’s main meat supplier, Jon Thorner’s, has seen out another successful festival as “it gets better each year”.

High-quality, British-sourced meat is the key to a prosperous festival season, as consumers are favouring quality over price. “More people are going for gourmet and high-quality than cheap produced ones,” said butcher Jon Thorner about his burgers. “Over the past few years, the standard of food has risen steadily to the point where there are very few cheap food outlets. Glastonbury encourages quality food as opposed to cheap burgers.”

As well as being the main wholesaler for the festival, Jon Thorner’s also set up its own food stalls at the event. This year, they sold an impressive 3 tonnes (t) of bacon, 1t of roast beef, 2t of minced beef, 6t of chicken, 1t of roast lamb, 4t of pork and 2t of sausages.

However, burgers remain a crowd favourite, with 25,000 sold over the duration of this year’s festival. “This is our fourth year doing burgers and we had numerous people saying they were the best burgers on-site,” continued Thorner. “Gourmet burgers have become mainstream. If you look on every restaurant, most have got some sort of fancy burgers, because they’re becoming more popular. More people are eating burgers than steak.”

Being the main meat supplier for over a decade, Jon Thorner’s has had to adapt over the years. This was the first year that they sold pie and mash. American-influenced food has also increased in popularity recently, according to Thorner, while products such as salt brisket and pulled pork have seen a rise in demand. “American-style diner food is becoming more prominent in what’s being offered in outdoor events.”

Meanwhile, an estimated 10t of excess food is expected to be collected from this year’s festival and redistributed.

EighthPlate is a food waste project led by FareShare South West. By collecting edible food leftover by festival-goers, it aims to redistribute what has been gathered to the vulnerable in the south west.

“We are so pleased with the leftover food waste that we have been able to collect from Glastonbury,” said project manager at EighthPlate, Emma Dyer. “We estimate we will be able to produce over 24,000 meals from this festival alone, which will be able to support those most in need. The food we have collected has enabled us to make chicken tagine, pork meatballs and lots of bread and butter pudding!”

By the end of 2015, EighthPlate hopes to recover 60t of unsold food from festivals to be reused to deliver 143,000 meals to food banks and soup kitchens across the south west.

Mark Laurie, director of The Nationwide Caterers Association (NCASS), which supports the project, said: “We are working closely with our members to assist them in managing their stock as effectively as possible in order to minimise waste. Where inefficiencies do occur, though, we are keen to help those people who need it most.”

Laurie continued: “EighthPlate is a great cause to be supporting and we hope that the project can be rolled out across all festivals in the future.”

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