Red Valley Farm in Carmarthen is celebrating coming first place in Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales’s ‘Put Your Best Sausage Forward 2021’ competition, with their Wild Boar and Apple Sausages having been selected as the very best bangers in Wales.
Rearing their very own wild boar, Red Valley Farm is owned and run by friends and business partners Andy and Graeme and producing quality pork products has been their passion ever since they took over the farm from Andy’s parents a few years ago.
Andy said: “My parents kept a range of animals, but as they grew older they weren’t able to manage the farm anymore so it was down to me. We actually got into specialising in pig keeping by accident, as we were gifted one boar to help clear the ground following some tree planting. Everything on this farm today has literally grown from there, from our two breeding boars Minnie and Mouse and one other pig.”
Wales is home to many small scale, artisan pork producers specialising in creating a unique, hand-reared product. Their products are often only available to buy directly from the producer or in equally small scale local independent shops, like butchers, making it a more sustainable food product and generating fewer food miles.
On winning the competition, Graeme said: “We are genuinely really delighted to be recognised and have our sausages named as the best sausages in Wales! We came second in the Put Your Best Sausage Forward competition in 2019, so I am chuffed to have now made it to the top spot!
“We make a number of different flavoured sausages but overall our biggest selling, which happens to be an absolutely outrageous seller, is our boar and apple burgers and sausages. They have a really unique flavour – they’re certainly different to your everyday banger – and we find that people love to try something different while knowing they are also getting a top quality, traceable product.
“We feed our boars and pigs on the best produce available, including brewers’ grain from two local brewers, and this year we are becoming self-sufficient for the first time by producing our own hay for our pigs – they eat better than us sometimes!
“At the end of the day, this is our business, the pigs are our future, and that is what is securing us to Red Valley Farm and making sure that this place is still here for our kids, and hopefully even their kids.”
Red Valley Farm pipped Cwm Farm Charcuterie in the Swansea Valley, and Daniel Morris Butchers in Mold and Denbigh, to the post in this year’s Put Your Best Sausage Forward 2021 competition, wowing judges Scott Quinnell (ex-rugby player and sausage enthusiast) and Elwen Roberts (Hybu Cig Cymru representative).
Scott Quinnell said: “We judged the sausages in their raw state and as cooked, but right from the off we were impressed with Graeme and Andy’s Wild Boar and Apple Sausages. They looked stunning, the consistency was spot on and they cooked up perfectly. When it got to the tasting, they did not disappoint. Packed with flavour – the depth of the boar really came through – and we both thoroughly enjoyed them. Well done boys, keep up the great work!”
Red Valley Farm now automatically qualifies for the UK and Ireland Champion of Champions Sausage competition, which will take place at the Butcher Shop of the Year 2021 Awards in April 2022.
Philippa Gill, Brand Marketing Executive at Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales, said: “We are so lucky in Wales with our fantastic Porc Blasus family of producers – the standard of sausages always makes picking an ultimate winner a difficult task for us! You can visit our brand new website at porcblasus.cymru to find your nearest porc producer, and meet lots of porc enthusiasts – from farmers to chefs – not to mention try out some of our 60 tasty porc recipes at home.”
Visit redvalleywales.co.uk to buy online with courier delivery, or for direction to their farm shop which is open on Fridays and Saturdays.
For more information on pork produced in Wales, and where you can buy it, please visit www.porcblasus.cymru.