Owen Taylor & Sons, Alfreton
Where did it all begin?
Owen Taylorâ€™s is a 3rd generation family run Retail and Catering butchers based near Alfreton in Derbyshire. The catering side of the business was born out of necessity when the retail and slaughter sides of the business hit turbulent times two decades ago.
What was your first recollection of the industry?
â€œOn my first day of work I went up to see my dad, who said to me. â€œWeâ€™ve just lost all the school contracts. So you better get out there and get sellingâ€. And thatâ€™s how I started in the business â€œsays Richard.
How has the business grown?
Today Owen Taylorâ€™s has a large catering aspect covering the East Midlands and a single but thriving retail shop. With over 150 staff and 20 refrigerated vans the company has certainly grown since its founding roots back in 1922. The family and the company still stay true to the heritage by buying most of the beef pork and lamb direct from farms within its delivery area, some of whom even sold livestock to Owen Taylor back in the day.
Do you enjoy entering Competitions?
â€œWe have had quite a few years where we have been successful with our products. Competitions like the Smithfield Awards and National Competitions are particularly good to enter. When competing against other Q Guild butchers we know itâ€™s going to be a tough competition. And thatâ€™s good; because when you win a Gold or Diamond Award you know youâ€™ve really achieved it and more importantly the staff know that their contribution has achieved it. The competitions help to get creative, improve quality, raise your game whilst generating good publicity. I love it when staff get passionate about the products they produce.â€ Says Richard.
What awards have you won lately?
Owen Taylorâ€™s has achieved success with many products including
seven Golds at the Smithfield awards, Category winner at the National
Products Competition, finalist at the British Pie competition and
winning Britainâ€™s Best Sausage at the trade industry`s Meat Management
Awards. Lennon Callister, our retail shop Apprentice, also gave a good
performance as a finalist at the premier Young Butcher competition. The
company was also a finalist in the catering Butcher Award at the Meat
â€œWe also like to enter regional business competitions. This year we entered the Midlands Family Business Awards where we won the Manufacturing Excellence award and achieved highly commended in the Corporate Social Responsibility Award. The awards night was a good networking opportunity with a celebration but itâ€™s the application and the 4 person interview panel that gets you thinkingâ€, says Carl Evans , Operations Manager
Whatâ€™s in store for 2019?
Next yearâ€™s competition diary is already shaping up for Owen Taylorâ€™s starting the year with the 2019 Smithfield awards on the 30th January 2019.
We are looking forward to taking part in competitions again in 2019. If I have any advice for anyone entering a competition it is simply this â€“ maximise the whole value of the competition.
- For product competitions look at the judges remarks with a view to improve them
- Look at the competition and speak with the entrants to give you new ideas
- Make sure your staff are involved in producing the products and celebrate success with them
- Use social media before and after the competition
- Write your own press release and send it to your local paper
- Have fun!