The family behind a Scottish food businesses has unveiled a premium new range of ready meals, produced with venison reared at their own family farm in Perthshire.
Findowie Farmhouse is the latest brand to join the portfolio of ready meal specialists Strathmore Foods, using sustainably farmed Scottish venison as the star ingredient of a new 4-pack range – in what is a first for the UK grocery market.
The new brand is named after Meikle Findowie, the picturesque SAI accredited farm near Dunkeld where the venison will be sourced. It is owned by Strathmore Foods founders the Nisbet family and home to over 200 Scottish deer and stags.
The family are unveiling the new range to coincide with Scottish Food & Drink Fortnight, and they are on a mission to celebrate and promote the great taste, versatility and health credentials of Scottish venison for everyone to enjoy.
To create the range, Strathmore Foods’ Forfar-based team delved into the Nisbet family recipe book to produce four delicious, convenient 380g chilled venison ready meals for one: Lasagne, Chilli, Cottage Pie, and Chausseur. Alongside Findowie farmed venison, the accompanying ingredients for each dish have been carefully selected from suppliers across the UK, with the utmost consideration for product quality and local sourcing.
Following a special on-sale period at Aldi for Scottish Food & Drink Fortnight in September, the new Findowie Farmhouse range will be available to order on the brand website’s online shop for home delivery. From early November the range will be listed with another major retailer ongoing across their Scottish stores.
Julie Nisbet, Managing Director of Strathmore Foods, and daughter of founder Colin Nisbet, explained why the launch of Findowie Farmhouse is the culmination of a long held dream for the family to put Scottish venison firmly on the menu in the supermarket chilled aisle. She commented: ‘Our family are long standing advocates and fans of Scottish venison, which is one of the tastiest, healthiest and most sustainable meats available in Scotland today. At our Meikle Findowie farm we have a wonderful source of superb quality venison available, so it makes us very proud to see this meat turned into four delicious new meals for shoppers. It’s also very exciting to be pioneering a completely new and innovative ready meal range in the UK, at a time when research shows that there is a growing appetite amongst consumers to try venison as more of a staple in their diet.
‘As a business we are very particular about where we source our ingredients, and we use the best local suppliers we can find, since there is nothing better than meals made with the food you can find on your doorstep – particularly in Scotland, which has some of the world’s best produce to offer. Venison however has been a bit under-rated, with people thinking it’s more of a speciality and something you might try in a restaurant or for a special occasion.
‘Well this is not the case! Our new Findowie range aims to change all that with a more convenient and affordable way to enjoy venison. We can’t wait for shoppers to try the packs and start enjoying them on a regular basis, knowing that the meat inside each meal has been reared sustainably at our Perthshire home.’
Founded in 1973, family run Strathmore Foods has over 40 years’ experience in the food industry. It is one of the UK’s leading ready meal manufacturers, producing a wide range of chilled and frozen products for both retail and foodservice markets. The company’s stable includes Scotland’s number 1 ready meal brand, McIntosh of Strathmore, which is also the best-selling chilled ready meal brand in the UK.
The business has a long-standing commitment to using high quality local Scottish ingredients, crafting meals based on the family’s traditional recipes and avoiding preservatives and chemicals. There is also a focus on sustainable, ethical production, including a partnership with Fareshare; a switch to trays made from 85% recycled content; solar panels on the factory roof to reduce fuel use; and an on-site bore hole to provide half of the water needed for production.