Rural Business Case Study: Chestnut Meats
“Farming is very competitive and we certainly didn’t want to be our own best secret, so increasing our business offer seemed like a very positive step to take.” Tim Dobson, Chestnut Meats
From dairy farming to meat supplier and from a small farm to wider business enterprise, Chestnut Meats is fast becoming one of our borough’s bigger rural success stories.
Starting as a small but successful dairy farm bought from his parents in 2000, Tim Dobson, along with his wife Marnie, created Chestnut Meats in 2006.
Twelve years on, the company is an award-winning business which sells its produce through its website and farm shop, farmers’ markets, food festivals, and sources its meat through 30 different suppliers.
In that time, the business has diversified beyond its core provision of goat and kid meat to also provide other locally-sourced meats such as beef, pork, lamb and venison.
Tim says: “Our mission has always been to be the best goat meat retailer in the UK, providing quality, consistency and innovation but we knew that in order for the farm to thrive we had to look beyond the obvious.
This is where Tim and Marnie were able to call upon The Skills & Growth Company* to help them realise their plans by securing expert support and rural grant funding.
The programme helped the Dobsons relocate to a purpose-built facility at Longfields Farm. The grant contributed to the renovation of an existing building on the farm to house a butchery, offices, farm shop and café.
Diversifying the business has been important to Tim and Marnie but keeping a strong sense of loyalty in how they go about their work is extremely important too.
“We have built up a good network of local suppliers and we only ever source from welfare-friendly British farms. This is something that is very important to us and to our many loyal customers that know that they can trust in what we do,” said Tim.
For more information on Chestnut Meats visit: chestnutmeats.co.uk/
*Please note this case study was published before The Skills & Growth Company was brought back into the Council’s Economic Development Service.