Television chef and food author Lesley Waters is helping with a major branding exercise to lift the profile of the Q Guild, the organisation that represents some of the best butchers in Britain, including Drake & Macefield. Lesley is devising a series of seasonal recipes for promotion in Q butcher shops throughout the country, showing consumers what can be achieved with British beef, lamb, pork and chicken.

The promotion coincides with a national branding exercise by the Guild in all of its 150 member shops to convince consumers that the best place to buy the best meat, which will be British and more than likely sourced locally, is at a Q butcher – the Q stands for quality. Q butchers shops like Drake & Macefield now have new external signage – a signal to consumers that they are shopping at one of the best independent meat retailers in the country. Q butchers are unique in that they voluntarily submit their businesses to a stringent and independent audit before attaining membership. They are then subjected to regular audits, spot checks and visits from mystery shoppers to ensure standards are adhered to.

Q membership is one of the meat trade’s highest endorsements of excellence.

“We want to get that across to consumers. Many are fed up with the impersonal service, confusing labeling and variable quality frequently experienced in the multiples,” said Drake & Macefield’s partner Richard Teal. “Q Butchers support local retailers and local producers. There are less food miles, meat is fresher, there are quality products and quality service. We have our own individual brand, but being associated with the Q brand should send a strong message to local consumers.

Partner Ian Thompson added:

“As Q Guild members, we are well known for our innovative approach to developing and presenting meat products. Now we have the celebrity touch with Lesley’s excellent recipes.”

Drake & Macefield won one of only seven diamond awards presented in the annual Smithfield Awards, run by the Q Guild.
The winning product – Steak & Kidney Pie – received maximum marks in the pies and bakery section and was one of three gold and two silver awards landed by Drake & Macefield. The business also won gold for its Steak & Kidney Pudding and Thick Pork Sausage, and silver for Lincolnshire Sausage and Beefburger with Chilli & Cheese. Partner Ian Thompson travelled to the Butchers Hall in London to receive the diamond trophy and other awards from celebrity tv chef and cookery school owner Lesley Waters, the Q Guild’s celebrity partner this year.The duo are pictured above and Ian
said afterwards:

We’re absolutely thrilled. We normally do well in product evaluation events, but a diamond award is the pinnacle.

The Smithfield Awards are among the most prestigious in the meat industry and a true indication of excellence. More than 400 products from Q butchers across the UK were assessed by an independent panel of experts.

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