Top Chefs to Eat at Prince's Table as Welsh Lamb Club Launched; CHARLES IS HOST TO HELP WALES WIN CUSTOM
Byline: STEVE DUB[ETH]
TOP restaurants in London are being encouraged to showcase Welsh Lamb in an initiative spearheaded by the Prince of Wales.
Prince Charles is inviting top London chefs, restaurateurs and suppliers to lunch at his London home at Clarence House for the official launch of the London Welsh Lamb Club.
It is the latest bid by the Prince to use his influence to boost farming in Wales and improve market prices for farmers who have seen their incomes severely eroded in recent years.
Other royal initiatives include the Mutton Renaissance Campaign, which aims to rejuvenate demand for the stronger-tasting meat from older sheep, and the Cambrian Mountains initiative.
"The Prince is really serious and motivated about farming and promoting good food," said Cambrian Mountains sheep farmer James Raw, who sits on one of the committees set up by the Prince to take forward his initiatives.
"For instance, when he met buyers from one supermarket he asked why they didn't stock mutton. They told him they didn't know where to source it so he gave them the details of a Welsh mutton farmer."
The aim of his latest venture is to tap into the consciousness of foodies in London and help to boost a growing demand for the succulent produce of the Welsh hillsides.
Fifty London restaurants have signed up as eager to serve Welsh Lamb to diners. They include top chefs Tom Aikens, Anthony Demetre, Richard Corrigan, Cyrus Todiwala, Mark Hix and Bryn Williams.
The London Welsh Lamb Club is the brainchild of Welsh red meat promotion agency Hybu Cig Cymru.
HCC chairman Rees Roberts said: "Our research has shown that Welsh Lamb is already the leading lamb brand in London and the south of England. We aim to build on that.
"Consumers appreciate its quality and taste, and they like the fact that Welsh sheep are free to roam the green hills and mountains of Wales."
An independent survey in 2008 showed that Welsh Lamb had become the top lamb brand in the minds of consumers for the first time.
It has stayed at the top spot ever since, boosted by the award of Protected Geographical Indication - PGI - status by the European Commission. …