Our family, the Robinsons has been farming at Cloughbane for around 150 years and is now in its fourth generation. Up until 2002, it was, pure and simply, a farm, selling our beef, lamb and free range eggs to wholesalers.
In 2002 our local council in Dungannon decided to set up a farmer’s market and invited us to be founder members and help get it off the ground. We sold our lamb and beef reared direct from our farm and it proved very popular and demand for it grew. We decided to set up a Farm Shop on our farm where we started selling our own beef and lamb.
It was a steep learning curve, as it was new to all of us; but business grew steadily and, in 2004, we converted a larger building (formerly a pig house, then a sheep pen) into what is now the shop, which features a 12-foot butchery serve over counter, three other chiller cabinets for our own and other locally sourced products, fruit and vegetables plus some ambient lines. We also sell chicken and pork from other local suppliers. The facilities also include a large butchery preparation area and cold stores for hanging the carcasses to mature. Beef is matured for 28 days, this allows for maximum taste and tenderness, lamb is matured for 10-14 days and all is dry hung on the bone, which we believe makes for a much better quality end product.
Cooking Up A Treat
The cooked food range came about because as our unique selling point was, and is, 28 days matured prime cuts of beef. We found that we were selling a lot more roasts and steaks, thus leaving us with a surplus of fore quarter beef such as stewing steak. We therefore had to think up of new innovative ways to use this meat. We could have sold it on; however, we really wanted to add value for our customers, and so the idea of cooked pies was born.
From humble beginnings this has rapidly expanded and to accommodate the increasing sales of the cooked dishes we converted another farm building to Farm Shop Kitchens. This enabled us to increase the volumes on our current range and also introduce new lines. Further success followed and in January 2009 we built our first purpose built cooked kitchens which is now BRC Approved.
Such has been the success of our award winning pies and ready meals that we now also sell to other retailers who want quality local produce for their customers. However, no matter how much the business grows we have all agreed that we will always retain the ethos of home cooked, and never allow it to get so big as to lose the home-made artisan quality which has made our pies award winning.
The home cooked range includes delights like Cottage Pie, Lasagne, Savoury Mince Pie, Steak Onion & Mushroom Pie, Chicken Ham and Leek Pie, Turkey and Stuffing Pie. We pride ourselves on making everything from scratch. For example, our white sauce is made from scratch using whole milk. Using beef which is either reared on or within a 50 mile radius of our farm which means we have perfect control of quality and therefore know we are using only the best for our customers.
Awards & Recognition
We are always delighted to be recognised for our achievements whether it is from our customers directly or the winner of an award; it makes all our hard work worthwhile. For a full list of award we have won please visit the awards section of our website.
Cloughbane Farm is a Farm Shop and Agri Food Business on a real farm. Quality is important to us and our goal is to keep providing all our customers with good honest wholesome food. We like to create a Taste from home, a Taste You Can Trust.