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Prime meat in high demand

Ali Scott and Dion Kilmister at the Outstanding NZ Food Producer Awards last Friday. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

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Consistency is key when it comes to producing prime Wairarapa lamb cuts for New Zealand consumers.

Bideford farmers Ali Scott and Dion Kilmister launched Homegrown Farm Fresh Meats in January last year with the aim of supplying the market with tasty lamb all year round.

Since then, the couple have racked up a handful of awards for their meat.

“We are absolutely stoked with the momentum it’s gaining and the feedback we are getting from our consumers,” Mrs Scott said.

Their $18 million farming operation includes three properties in Bideford, Pongaroa and one recently bought in Pahiatua, as well as leasing four in Dannevirke, the Hutt Valley, and two in Masterton.

Living by the ethos of “eat what and how the farmer eats”, they wanted to offer consumers meat they could buy all year round, at a premium export-quality level delivered right to their door.

This was launched first with female Charollais lamb, recently followed by Angus beef, with the plan to introduce Speckle Park beef soon.

The meat boxes, ordered online, are offered in half or whole boxes with three different options for cuts.

They wanted to encourage “nose to tail” eating, but while this was a similar goal of many farmers proving meat to the domestic market, Mrs Scott said theirs was unique.

They are breed and gender specific to achieve consistent quality meat, she said.

“We originally came to the consumer market as we were hearing lots of comments about the lack of consistent lamb already on the market so we wanted to do something about it.”

Earlier last month, they were awarded a gold medal for the Homegrown Farm Fresh Meats gourmet whole lamb box, which saw them finalists for the overall awards.

They were crowned “Paddock” category champions at the Outstanding NZ Food Producer Awards last Friday.

These awards come only two months after taking out the Keinzley Agvet Wairarapa Sheep & Beef Farm Business of Year.

The food producer awards were “external validation that the consumer can trust”, Mrs Scott said.

A judge’s comment saying it was the “best lamb he has ever tasted” was more assurance for the couple.

If that was not enough, the couple have teamed up with Preston’s Master Butchers to launch a restaurant wholesale brand, Grass Fed Girls, with the same Charollais lamb from the meat boxes.

Lamb, mutton and Angus beef can also be bought at Joe’s Meat Market in Kuripuni, Masterton.

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