Archers Jersey Ice Cream - the Darlington farmers doing their bit for animal welfare
PUBLISHED: 13:42 13 June 2012 | UPDATED: 21:29 20 February 2013
Food producers across the North East are doing their bit to improve animal welfare, and now you can too
Forget the seaside, ice cream fans in the North East are heading inland to a farm near Darlington to savour an award-winning range of flavours made with milk from the resident herd of Jersey cows, whose care and welfare has RSPCA Freedom Food approval.
Archers Jersey Ice Cream was created when John and Sue Archer decided to branch out from simply producing milk from their farm near Walworth Gate. Visitors now flock to the farm for their delicious ice cream.
From the outset John was determined to prove the Jerseys were cared for to the highest welfare standards. He called in Freedom Food who run the RSPCAs farm animal welfare food labelling and assurance scheme.
It aims to improve welfare standards in farm animals. Its based on the five freedoms freedom from fear and distress; freedom from pain, injury or disease; freedom from hunger and thirst; freedom from discomfort; and the freedom to express normal behaviour.
John said: We joined Freedom Food for peace of mind, to ensure we were doing everything right.
Things have gone from strength to strength for the Archers. In 2008 the Archers opened a second manufacturing site at The Station in Richmond, North Yorkshire. Then in spring last year they extended the parlour at the farm to offer ice cream all year round. It now has a log burning stove and customers can watch the working farm in action, with a playground for children. Other franchises have since been opened too, with one in Jesmond and one in Northallerton.
The Archers put their success down to their ice cream being made fresh each day from their own high quality Jersey milk.
The RSPCAs Freedom Food charity is this month asking us all to do our bit for animal welfare to mark Farm Animal Week, from June 18th-24th.
The Switch One For Welfare campaign is aimed at enraging shoppers to swap one more item in their basket for a Freedom From product. The logo appears on products such as pork, beef, chicken, duck, salmon and eggs.
And the campaign extends to meals out, too. Simply Ask is Freedom Foods campaign to get people asking about animal welfare when eating out in restaurants, pubs and cafes.
Restaurants that are already making a difference to animal welfare by using cage-free eggs, and not serving foie gras or white veal, are signing up to the campaign theres a list of participating restaurants online at www.simplyask.org.uk, where you can also nominate a restaurant.
The Feathers Inn in Stocksfield, Northumberland, is one venue already taking part. The food served is traditionally British with a regional edge, and the pub has a warm ambience thanks to the beams, open fires and stripped stonework. The issue of farm animal welfare is important to the pub team, who have won RSPCA Good Business Awards for their commitment and dedication to animal welfare a real recognition for the efforts they make.