Only pig abattoir and processing
company in region brings home the bacon
The last few years have not been happy ones for the pig industry,
but one Cornish pig producer has bucked that particular trend
and as a result of some support from Business Link and Objective
One investment, his family business is going from strength
In the late 1990s the Uglows, who produce pigs at Whitstone
in the far reaches of North Cornwall, moved into a small unit
on a local industrial estate, planning to process pigs reared
on their farm into pork, bacon, ham and sausages. Within two
years demand for Cornish Farmhouse Bacon Company's products
had grown so fast that the business had outgrown the premises.
At the same time a fire in a local abattoir had created problems
getting the pigs slaughtered locally.
After some careful planning, including expert advice from
Business Link the family invested in a new purpose-built abattoir
and processing plant on the farm. This means that up to 150
pigs a week, sourced direct from the farm or from a neighbouring
producer, can be slaughtered and processed into a wide range
of pork products, helping to satisfy the growing demand for
local bacon, ham and sausages.
"We do everything here now, including smoking and
curing ham and bacon," Justin Uglow explained, adding
that it is still very much a family business also involving
his parents and brother.
"We went from being about to stop pig production
on the farm, which would have made one man redundant, to building
this business and bringing processing back to the farm, which
employs ten full-time and another ten part-time."
Investment came through the Objective One investment programme,
Rural Diversification Capital Grants Initiative (RDCGI), administered
by Devon and Cornwall Business Link. Initial funding was granted
for building, structural work and equipment, such as a bacon
slicer and a weighing and grading machine. Later applications
to the Cornwall Food and Drink programme, also run by Business
Link, helped to upgrade processing machinery.
The result of this investment is a thriving business that
is the only abattoir and processing company for pigs in Devon
and Cornwall. "This project has helped to sustain
the entire pig sector in the region by creating new outlets
for their pigs that wouldn't otherwise be available," said Graham Woolcock, manager of the Cornwall Food and
Drink programme. "Funding has also made it easier
to meet the complex regulations surrounding the meat processing
Cornish Farmhouse Bacon Company products can be found in
a growing number of retail butchers, farm shops, catering
businesses, delicatessens and small retail shops in Cornwall
and further east as far as Exeter. The company has won a number
of awards including, in 2003, the Taste of the West award
for best meat product, won by the company's beech smoked bacon.
Gary Ensor, head of agriculture at Business Link agriculture,
added that there are still opportunities for farm businesses
to take advantage of the Objective One investment programmes,
but to get the maximum effect, businesses should take advantage
of the advice available from Business Link both before and
after investment is agreed. "It is this approach that
ensures more successful applications and more projects that
run successfully post investment," he said.
For further information contact Carolyn Daw of The Marketing-PR
Company Ltd on 01566 771863 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Objective One Programme for Cornwall
and the Isles of Scilly has invested in the Rural Diversification
Capital Grant Initiative and the Cornwall Food and Drink Programme,
through the European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund
Media Relations Manager
Objective One Partnership Office
Truro TR1 2UD
Mobile: 07973 813647
Telephone: 01872 223439
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