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Media Releases

MEDIA RELEASE – 17 November 2017

Australian Pork Limited’s Award for Best Traditional Ham in NSW goes to The Free Range Butcher

Christmas Ham Season was officially launched in Sydney today and included the announcement of the Australian PorkMark Ham Award winners. In a significant win for small producers, Northern Beaches based business, The Free Range Butcher, was awarded “Best Traditional Ham in NSW” by the pork industry’s peak body, Australian Pork Limited (APL).

Accepting the award was business owner, and northern beaches local, Ben Clinch: “We’re really pleased to receive this recognition for our quality, free range, pasture fed hams. Compared to most, we’re a small producer so it’s a win for the little guy as well!”

Ben went on to say, “Our hams have been winning favour with our customers since we first started producing them and selling them at the farmers markets and online. Eight years later, we’re proud to be the only business in NSW that produces the pork (on our own farm in north west NSW), hand mixes the cure from an in-house recipe, then cures, smokes and cooks the ham. I believe this level of quality control is a big reason why we’re able to produce an excellent product year after year.” 

Many consumers are unaware that more than two thirds of ham sold in Australia is made from imported pork from Asia, Denmark and Canada. Importantly the PorkMark Ham Awards recognise the best hams made from 100% Australian pork.

The Free Range Butcher team are taking orders now for their award winning Ham products. Ben advises customers to place their order early as they have sold out of hams every year so far. Ben laughs as he says: “As the old saying goes ‘Early Bird Catches the Best Ham in NSW’”.

For recipes, tips and tricks for your Christmas hams, visit www.freerangebutcher.com.au

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About The Free Range Butcher
The Free Range Butcher specialises in Grass Fed, 28 day Dry Aged Beef and Lamb, Pasture Fed Free Range Pork, and Free Range Poultry. Supplied from our own farm and other farmers we know, all our meat is hormone and antibiotic free. Our farm is located 90km north of Tamworth in the North West of New South Wales. Surrounding the district and our family farm are the Nandewar mountain ranges. It is perfect country for raising free range produce, with an average rainfall over 1000mm, and no large scale cropping programs in our area. With two generations of farming knowledge behind us, we began formally selling our products in 2008. Our mission then, as it is now, was to produce products which were Ethical, Sustainable and Traceable. As of 2017, we offer a weekly home delivery service and operate at over 20 farmers markets every month.

Further enquiries, please contact:

Alison Clinch
Marketing Director

Phone: 0414 252 972 | Email: alison@freerangebutcher.com.au

MEDIA RELEASE – 15 October 2015

Back-to-back wins for Free Range Butcher at RAS Fine Food Awards

Northern Beaches based business, The Free Range Butcher, announced today that they have won medals again this year in the Deli Meat category at the Royal Agricultural Society (RAS) Fine Food Awards. Specifically, the business was awarded a silver medal for its Free Range Pasture Fed Ham and a bronze medal for its Free Range Pasture Fed Bacon. Owner and Director, Ben Clinch, says he and his team are thrilled about their awards: “These medals are a great follow up to our 2014 Medals, and it’s very satisfying to know the products produced from our small team can be amongst the best in the business.”

The timing of these awards is all the more relevant, with the ACCC recently uncovering that much of the ham that is available in mainstream supermarkets and delicatessens is not even grown in Australia. It is imported from countries such as Asia, Denmark and Canada. Some Australian companies have also recently been reprimanded by the ACCC for using misleading terms such as ‘bred free range’ in an effort to make their products more appealing to customers.

Conversely, all pork sold by The Free Range Butcher is produced in Australia and is a genuine Free Range product. Ben Clinch explains more: “On our family farm at Barraba in North West NSW, we grow pigs in open paddocks which takes a lot longer than an intensive farm in another country. Our pigs are grown with respect, using sustainable practices. They are always outside, feeding on pasture, never caged. Our methods are traceable and transparent.”

The care and transparency of process continues all the way through the production cycle with a skilled team of butchers’ hand mixing the cure from an in-house recipe, then curing, smoking and cooking the ham. This process can take up to two weeks, not days like the mass factories. “At The Free Range Butcher, we employ real people, not machines,” says Ben.

Ben goes on to say: “We choose this way of business because it is much kinder for the animals, the people we employ, and more sustainable long term.”

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About The Free Range Butcher
The Free Range Butcher specialises in Grass Fed, 28 day Dry Aged Beef and Lamb, Pasture Fed Free Range Pork, and Free Range Poultry. Supplied from our own farm and other farmers we know, all our meat is hormone and antibiotic free. Our farm is located 90km north of Tamworth in the North West of New South Wales. Surrounding the district and our family farm are the Nandewar mountain ranges. It is perfect country for raising free range produce, with an average rainfall over 1000mm, and no large scale cropping programs in our area. With two generations of farming knowledge behind us, we began formally selling our products in 2008. Our mission then, as it is now, was to produce products which were Ethical, Sustainable and Traceable. As of 2015, we offer a weekly home delivery service and operate at over 20 farmers markets every month.

Further enquiries, please contact:

Alison Clinch
Marketing Director

Phone: 0414 252 972 | Email: alison@freerangebutcher.com.au

Notes to editors

  • The 2015 Silver Medal Award products were:
    • Rolled Ham
    • Short cut Bacon
  • The 2015 Bronze Medal Award products were:
    • Easy Carve Ham
    • Rindless Bacon

MEDIA RELEASE – 23 September 2014

Local Butcher Shines at the 2014 RAS Fine Food Awards

The search for the best in Australian food began in early September at the 2014 Royal Agricultural Society (RAS) Sydney Fine Food Show with medal winners announced last week. Local business, The Free Range Butcher, based at Mona Vale, was awarded seven medals in the Deli Meat category.

The Fine Food awards recognise the very best in food agriculture and provide an easily recognisable way for food lovers to choose premium products. A team of 113 expert judges came together to judge over 1,300 products across categories including olive oil, regional food, lamb, beef, pasta and deli meat. The deli meat category saw a surge in entries this year with Chief Judge Greg Bonnefin and his team needing to taste their way through 786 products. In fact, it was the biggest category in the Fine Food awards with 37 Judges and 17 Stewards assessing the products over two days. A further six chefs were employed for the two days to cook the products.

The Sydney Royal Deli Meat Competition was established in 1995 to judge a variety of smallgoods products. There are 64 classes within the competition, ranging from ham, bacon, salami and prosciutto to general smallgoods, cooked products, poultry products, gourmet products and sausage classes.

Reflecting the seriousness with which the judges take their responsibility, media attending the event were requested not to wear perfume, cologne or smell of cigarette smoke as this can interfere with the judging process!

Farmer and Owner of The Free Range Butcher, Ben Clinch, said that it was a team effort that saw them awarded seven medals: “Everyone in our business takes an enormous pride in what we do – right from the farmers producing the animals to the team processing and selling the products – so to receive this recognition is a reflection of everyone’s efforts.” Ben went on to say that the winning products were also some of the customers’ favourites: “Our Pasture Fed, Free Range Ham has been a winner with customers for many years now and with the award win coming just ahead of the Christmas season we're gearing up for another big year.”

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About The Free Range Butcher
The Free Range Butcher specialises in Grass Fed, 28 day Dry Aged Beef and Lamb, Pasture Fed Free Range Pork, and Free Range Poultry. Supplied from our own farm and other farmers we know, all our meat is hormone and antibiotic free. Our farm is located 90km north of Tamworth in the North West of New South Wales. Surrounding the district and our family farm are the Nandewar mountain ranges. It is perfect country for raising free range produce, with an average rainfall over 1000mm, and no large scale cropping programs in our area. With two generations of farming knowledge behind us, we began formally selling our products in 2008. Our mission then, as it is now, was to produce products which were Ethical, Sustainable and Traceable. As of 2014, we offer a weekly home delivery service and operate at over 20 farmers markets every month.

Further enquiries, please contact:
Alison Clinch
Marketing Director
Phone: 0414 252 972
Email: alison@freerangebutcher.com.au

Notes to editors

The Silver Medal Award products were:

The Bronze Medal Award products were:

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