Butchers' chance for Royal favour
Published:  01 April, 2007

Meanwhile, Guild of Q butchers were also being offered the chance to buy beef, pork and lamb reared on the Royal Estate at Windsor, which they will be able to sell as branded 'Royal' meat to their customers.

Windsor farm shop sells meat produced on the estate, but an excess of 40-50 pigs, over 100 lambs and three to four cattle are being produced each week, said the shop's manager Christopher Murray. The excess is sold to abattoirs and then on to mainstream meat processors, with no regard for its origin. Christopher saw this as a wasted opportunity and contacted Guild of Q butcher David Lidgate, who organised a tour of the royal estate for the Guild's Southern members.

The meeting took place on 12 March and involved looking at Sussex cows, Dorset lambs and Landrace pigs, and then touring the Windsor farm shop. The butchers attending then tucked into a lunch of sandwiches, cheeses, pâtés and cakes, supplied by the farm shop.

Christopher said: "This is very high-quality beef, pork and lamb and for it to go into the mainstream is a bit of a waste, with all the effort that goes into producing it." He said butchers who bought the meat would be given a certificate to hang in their shop, similar to the Guild of Q certificate, which would inform customers they were selling meat from the Royal Estate at Windsor.

Christopher emphasised that the aim was not to make a large profit for the Windsor Estate, but to supply a marketable product to the best-placed retailers.