A Taste of the Shropshire Hills

Had a great day out today, courtesy of Jodie at the Shropshire Hills AONB. The day was titled ‘Organic Farm to Fork’ and we started with a visit to Rhos Fiddle Nature Reserve, an SSSI managed by Shropshire Wildlife Trust, high in the Shropshire Hills. The views are stunning and it is so peaceful. Part of the management is the grazing of highland cattle – an unusual sight in the Shropshire countryside! The cattle are owned by local organic farmer, Trevor Wheeler, who introduced us to his cattle and hebridean sheep on the hillside, then took us to his farm a little way down the valley. This organic mixed farm trades as Clun Valley Organics, supplying meat and vegetables through local shops and farmers markets. We also viewed the eco cottage located on the farm, fully self sufficient with a wind turbine and solar hot water panels.

After a delicious lunch made by Zara from Myriad Organics in Ludlow we headed for Daysdrove Abattoir in Bishops Castle to see the next stage of the journey from farm to fork.  It was interesting to tour the building and see the care taken to ensure animals are slaughtered humanely. The business prides itself on the fact that animals have low food miles and are of a high quality.

Finally we visited Andrew Pugh, the local butcher, who gave a very informative demonstration on how to cut up and present a forequarter of beef, one of the less popular parts of the animal. To finish he produced samples of slow cooked chuck beef and salt cured brisket, both of which were delicious, but the salt beef was devine! Something I will try to reproduce at home!

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