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Local input is at the core of cider’s success

IT’S all about the blend! – so says Philip Saxby the farmer turned cider maker.

“We use the best apple varieties from the West Country and the Eastern Counties to create our own unique cider.”

Saxby’s have been making cider for six years now on their farm based just outside Wellingborough, in the quiet village of Farndish.

The cider making started as just a bit of fun on an old rack and cloth press which took Philip and a few helpers three weeks to make around 300 litres.

Philip said: “It was hard work, but the cider was delicious, so we started selling it to local outlets, where it quickly sold out. With this encouraging start we doubled production the following year and have now invested in some big shiny new tanks and kit which make the whole process much easier and more efficient.

“We have big plans for next year as we have secured a grant from the local LEDA fund and we will be installing our own kegging and bottling line.”

This will help the cider makers meet their ambitious plans for 2020.

“We now supply all the best local retailers and pubs and also use wholesalers to sell further afield,” said Philip. The cider is already exported to Norway and Switzerland with the team actively looking for partners in other countries.

“We make fruit ciders as well as straightforward apple ciders and this winter we have a lovely hot mulled cider made using our own secret blend of herbs and spices,” said Philip, who takes pride in Saxby’s Cider’s eight Great Taste Awards since 2017 and being named a Great Taste Producer.

“I like to include local people as much as possible in what we do, including using apple donations from local gardens and orchards.”

A members’ club is planned where fans can keep in touch with all the latest news and enjoy discounts offers. The team will be at shows in the run up to Christmas including the Northampton Winter Food Festival, Castle Ashby Christmas Fayre and the Burghley Christmas Fair.

Cider Tours start again in March which includes a tour through the orchard on the back of a tractor and trailer.

To keep up to date follow Saxby’s Cider on Facebook at www.facebook.com/SaxbysCider or visit www.saxbyscider.co.uk

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