By: Deer & Dexter
Bringing together UK independent food and drink suppliers in one easy to access marketplace
Our aim is to bring Heritage Breed & Special Types of Meat back into British kitchens.
As Marcus Wareing said of our Heritage Breeds meats from Huntsham Farm, “By using rare breeds we ironically encourage the survival of these fabulous forgotten foods to ensure they are around for years to come.”
We also champion Special Types of Grass Fed Meats, slowly reared in harmony with nature, including Salt Marsh Lamb, Rose Veal, Buffalo Meat, Wagyu Beef. Learn More.
Originating in Tipperary, Ireland in 1750, Mr Dexter developed the breed by selecting the best of the hardy mountain cattle of the area, descended from the ancient black cattle of the early Celts.
The smallest British cattle breed, in fact about half the size of modern commercial cattle, Dexter beef became endangered in the post war move to intensive agriculture.
Dexter Beef is now popular with many Chefs because of the outstanding quality and flavour and good marbling of small, trim cuts and joints. Our Dexter Beef is born, bred and reared by Jane & Peter at Old Stoddach Farm, Cumbria. Learn more about Dexter Beef
Black cattle with a distinctive white belt, the “Beltie” hails from the Galloway Hills where they are perfectly suited to the harsh upland climate, turning a variety of rough hill pasture and herbs into the finest quality beef.
The Belted Galloway is a remarkable animal, slow to mature with a double coat of hair to keep them warm in winter, they don’t have the backfat most other breeds require. Their meat is therefore leaner but with a special flavour and texture.
Lakeland’s Michelin Starred Chef Simon Rogan has described our Belted Galloway beef from Jon Watson’s Yew Tree Farm, Cumbria as “a real find for his restaurants…. amazing flavours that just can't be beaten." Learn more about Belted Galloway Beef
Originally from the Yorkshire Dales, the Longhorn with characteristic horns and distinctive white stripe down the back is the oldest British beef breed, which made England famous for its fine Roast Beef.
These old-fashioned cattle, bred over 200 years ago, have a quiet, gentle nature which produces relaxed meat. Their natural ability to form intramuscular fat or ‘marbling’ without laying down excess external fat, has won Longhorn beef so many fans among top Chefs.
Our Longhorn Beef is from Huntsham who have numerous Michelin Starred Chef’s amongst their customers. In fact, Heston Blumenthal described their Longhorn as the best beef available in Britain during his TV series 'Perfection'! Learn more about Longhorn Beef
Wagyu Beef is not a native British Breed but has become world famous for the intense marbling present in the beef, which refers to the fine white layers of fat that run through lean beef.
The marbling releases flavour into the meat when cooked explaining why Wagyu Beef melts in the mouth, reputed to be the finest and most tender tasting beef in the world, with benefits to human health, thus demanding a high market value.
Our Wagyu is reared by Ifor Humphries in Wales whose ‘grade’ of marbling is now as good as imported Japanese Wagyu. He also maintains the tradition of feeding his Wagyu cattle beer and massaging them to keep them relaxed! Learn more about Wagyu Beef
The Middle White pig, pink in colour with a squashed snout, originated in the 1850s in Yorkshire and for 80 years was the pork pig of England renowned for high quality pork, well-marbled with remarkable flavour.
However, after the Second World War, a move towards intensive production saw an increasing demand for lean pigs for bacon production and the Middle White Breed became endangered.
Today top Chefs are driving a resurgence for this specialist pork pig. Our Middle White pork comes from Huntsham Farm and is described by Michel Roux as having “the crispiest skin and the best flavoured fat to accompany its fantastic tasting meat.” Learn more about Middle White Pork
Originally from Hungary, Mangalitza pigs are a very old breed of pig with a cute wooly coat which makes them ideally suited to outdoor systems.
They reach their 'prime' at 2 years of age gaining marbling akin to Wagyu, and building up a fantastic flavour. Managlitza meat is so different to industrially produced pork, it is dark, marbled and juicy with an unbeatable flavour.
The high quality meat and fat of the Mangalitza once prized across Europe was recently on the brink of extinction but thanks to breeders like Yorkshire’s Otterburn Mangalitza and butchers like Alternative Meats it is once again back on British tables. Learn more about Middle White Pork
This Gloucestershire Old Spot a white coloured pig with distinctive black spots and lop ears, is known for fattening up on windfall apples and pears, giving the meat its sweet flavour and beautiful succulence.
Suitable for pork or bacon production, the meat from Gloucestershire Old Spots is something very special. So much so that their pork has been protected throughout the EU since 2010. This is the first breed in the world to gain such recognition.
A big part of the difference in quality and taste of a modern hybrid pig breed and a GOS is fat, the former having virtually no visible backfat or marbling, the latter having just the right amount of both.
Herdwick sheep are the native breed of the Lake District, and considered the most hardy of all Britain’s breeds of hill sheep, grazing fells running to over 3000 feet.
Many Herdwicks live their lives without receiving any supplementary feed so grow more slowly, only maturing when they are hoggets (aged 1-2 years old).
Our Herdwick Hogget and Mutton is from Yew Tree Farm, Cumbria and has been described by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall as "amongst the finest I have tasted". Learn more about Herdwick Lamb & Mutton
Salt Marsh lamb has the most incredible flavour but in the UK it’s only fairly recently that this ‘melt-in-the-mouth’ meat has been treated as a speciality. The French have been treating it like a delicacy for decades and just can’t get enough of it!
Salt Marsh Lamb has a distinctive flavour and tender texture, dark in colour with less fat than mountain-reared lamb. Our Gower Salt Marsh Lamb is outstanding and fully traceable, from the Pritchard Family at Weobley Castle.
They breed traditional Welsh sheep who graze the estuary, a unique environment of wild pastures containing Samphire, Sorrel, Sea lavender, Glasswort, Sea Purslane and Thrift giving the meat it’s special flavour. Learn more about Salt Marsh Lamb
For years, Alternative Meats have promoted British Rose Veal, a tender and tasty meat from male dairy calves raised on a natural diet to almost 12 months of age, longer than commercially reared chicken, lamb and pork.
The sad situation is that when a dairy cow produces a calf in order to give us milk, there is a 50% chance of producing a bull calf which is sadly of no value to the farmer. Historically these bull calves have been destroyed within days of being born.
Our British Rose Veal is from Alternative Meats and Gazegill Organics whose calves are raised on a natural diet to in excess of 400kg producing a wonderfully tasty and tender pink or rose coloured meat. Learn More about Rose Veal
Organic food production focuses on methods that are truly sustainable which is critical now, because if we don’t start regenerating our soil then it will become impossible to feed our global population.
Organic farming methods support soil life and diversity, caring for animals humanely and avoiding negative impacts on the environment.
Our Organic Meat is all Heritage Breed meat because these breeds are suited to traditional, extensive methods of production. Emma Robinson & Family farm at Gazegill Farm, Lancashire and offer fantastic Organic produce. Learn more about Organic Heritage Breed Meat
In the UK, goat meat is still relatively niche but globally it is the most widely eaten meat. Britain is however, finally waking up to what the rest of the world has known for a long time: Goat meat is delicious!
The Boer goat is a breed of goat that was developed in South Africa in the early 1900s for meat production. The breed produces fantastic quality goat meat demanded by top Chef’s who buy most of the goat meat in the UK at present.
Our Free Range Boar Goat Meat comes from The Dorset Goat Meat Co, it’s a versatile and lean meat, containing less fat than chicken, so is a great source of low fat protein for a healthy lifestyle.
Our Buffalo Meat is reared by Steven Mitchell and family in Fife and are kept, as you would cattle. Grass fed throughout Spring Summer and Autumn then housed on straw courts over the worst of the winter, where they are fed on homemade hay.
Buffalo Meat has high levels of protein, iron, Omega 3’s and 6’s and is being recommended for lowering cholesterol levels. It’s rich in flavour and low in fat, tasting similar to high quality beef.
Because buffalo has very little fat and contains more protein than beef, it doesn’t shrink when cooking and so you might find it more satisfying to eat. Learn more about Buffalo Meat
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