Faggots back in fashion for West Country butcher
Published:  12 January, 2018

West Country butcher Pyne’s of Somerset is struggling to keep up with demand for his traditionally-made faggots. 

Malcolm Pyne, who runs Pyne’s of Somerset with his wife Julie, has had to co-ordinate a five-strong team of staff to make them as sales have grown to over 5,000 a week.

Pyne said: “I put a team of five staff on them because although we’ve got a machine that does the mixing each one has to be wrapped in caul fat by hand.

“But that’s the way faggots have traditionally been made and as far as I am concerned if you are going to make a traditional product then you cannot cut corners.”

Malcolm’s faggots are produced by following his great-grandmother’s recipe using pork, liver, onion, salt, sage and breadcrumbs, and then wrapped in caul fat before being baked.

The traditional meal of faggot, chips and peas is now making such a comeback in the area that chip shops are among his biggest customers, with one business ordering 1,000 faggots on a weekly basis.

He believes that the rise of ‘nose-to-tail’ eating in the 21st century is behind their new popularity.

“I’m afraid faggots are one of those things that fell into the clutches of the industrial food sector and suffered very badly from it,” he said.

“Faggots were always regarded as a real delicacy, though an affordable one, but once most people tasted the factory versions which were bland and bulked out with water they were put off them for life.

“Now we are selling to an entirely new generation who have discovered them in farmers’ markets or independent butchers and appreciate them for what they are: one of the tastiest and most nutritious of our traditional foods.”