Best assured: thanks to our badge of pride
I am sure you will all agree with me that this region of the country produces some of the finest quality food and drink products in the nation.
However, this year has seen some pretty alarming food discrepancies, with provenance and labelling issues. Customers have the right to expect the contents to be exactly as they say on the label but sadly this has not been the case. Please be assured though, that there's one thing the British farmer and producer has in common and that is we are 100 per cent dedicated to ensuring the highest standards of farming and production are adhered to from the start of the process to the end.
Doing your weekly shop doesn't have to be a minefield because there is one highly recognisable marque that assures you that the products were grown and produced in the UK to rigorous standards and that is the Red Tractor logo. I know you can trust the logo because I am a Red Tractor Assured farmer and cheese-maker and at Keen's Cheddar we're proud that we milk, make and mature our cheese all on one site.
This week is Red Tractor Week – a celebration of British food and drink produced with a clear guarantee of origin and strict standards of food safety. In fact, you're bound to see a few Red Tractor Week banners in your local stores and restaurants. When you do spot these you can be sure you're supporting the British producer and farmer.
FREE WHEATGERM WITH EVERY POND HEATER www.blagdon-water-gardens.c...View details
Protect your pond fish this winter. Purchase the resun 100w pond heater £39.99 from www.blagdon-water-gardens.co.uk and we will give you a pot of Tetra wheatgerm 1l winter fishfood worth £4.99 FREE
Contact: 01934 316673
Valid until: Friday, February 28 2014
Although we are a small business with a simple business model, we ensure the food miles are as limited as possible and we use all natural ingredients from our own resources – and I can assure you that no other products but our own go into Keen's Cheddar.
Modern food production methods can be complicated for the consumer to understand at the best of times, but knowing that there is a recognisable assurance scheme in place that's easy to spot can allay any concerns and speed up the decision-making process while you do your shopping.
Being a family business, we recognise that the families who buy our cheese don't have the time to trawl through the internet researching every stage of their food's journey from field to fork. At a glance it's clear to see that we have been courteous to the animals that produced our milk (this is of utmost importance on every level, from morality to cheese quality) and that our cheese has been produced in a hygienic and controlled environment – and is completely and utterly a British product. We should look out for the Red Tractor logo because businesses who use the Red Tractor logo are proud of what they do and want to wear a badge of honour to demonstrate their commitment to quality. It's not easy to be granted Red Tractor status. Keen's Cheddar and other Red Tractor assured producers have earned and not purchased the right of recognition.
As a consumer, you can have peace of mind knowing that there are people working behind the scenes who genuinely care about the food you and your family consume. I believe that we really are very lucky to have such an assurance scheme in place because it helps to raise the standards of animal welfare, food safety and environmental protection in general. These are the three things that we all know we should consider when buying our food but aren't always able to easily research for ourselves. Buying a Red Tractor approved product such as Keen's Cheddar takes the hard work out for you because you can trust that Red Tractor assurance has done the hard work for you.
The Red Tractor standards haven't been set by one single influencer; instead they have been agreed by agricultural experts, animal welfare experts, scientists and food production representatives, meaning not one single body profits. In my book that's a win on the side of the consumer.
We at Keen's Cheddar think that Red Tractor is a valuable scheme in today's confusing market. It's a sad fact but long gone are the days when we all knew the name of our butcher, bought our milk from the local farm and had a shop on every corner selling only food from within a ten-mile radius. Gone too are the days we all bought our chickens from source, prepared and cooked them in our kitchen. Thank goodness for the Red Tractor, I say, because it helps to keep that confidence alive in a fast-paced and ever-changing market.
So join in with me and the other Red Tractor members – there's around 80,000 of us in the UK – as we fly the flag for great quality British food, not just over Red Tractor Week but all year round.
The Keen family has been making Unpasteurised Keen's Cheddar since moving into Moorhayes Farm in 1899. Five generations later, Keen's Cheddar is still on the site and is proud to be producing world famous, award winning British Cheddar Cheese. Visit www.keenscheddar.co.uk for more information