Getting to know PGI - what is it and why do we need it?
When it comes to farming and fresh produce, Welsh Lamb is particularly special. Created with the guiding principle to deliver on what it promises, bringing unrivalled and consistent quality to the nation’s dinner tables. A simple ethic for sure, but one which has led to it being awarded the much coveted PGI status by the EU.
You may have heard the term before, but exactly what is PGI, and why should you stock it?
Know where your food comes from
PGI stands for Protected Geographical Indication, which relates to the orgin of produce.
What does origin mean? It means where and how produce is created. Welsh Lamb is produced under very unique cirmcustances – all thanks to the beautiful green landscape, the clean air, plenty of fresh spring water, fresh grass and heather, the best welfare standards and traditional family methods of farming. It’s a very natural product. It is this origin for which the EU has recognised and awarded Welsh Lamb with PGI status.
The environment in which Welsh Lamb livestock are raised plays an extremely important part in producing its succulent, sweet and tender meat. To obtain PGI status, the lambs are required to have been born and reared in Wales throughout their lives and processed in PGI approved abattoirs, making them 100% Welsh!
Food provenance is extremely important, not only to guarantee consumers quality and taste, but also to legally protect it from imitations claiming Welsh status.
Look for the logo
Today, we all want to know where our food comes from. But time is short, and customers don’t always have the luxury of reading the back of every packet we pick up. Thankfully, when it comes to choosing a delicious joint of lamb for our sunday roast, PGI makes life easier: they can simply look for the striking yellow and blue logo on the front, which ensures they’ll be buying quality in every bite.
You might recognise this circular logo from premium products such as Parma Ham and Champagne, whereby consumers associate these products with being of the highest quality. Like Welsh Lamb, these products can’t be made anywhere other than within the boundaries of their PGI-awarded regions. You’ll also discover many fine Greek wine, Bulgarian wine and Italian wine with the same PGI award.
They will all feature exactly the same circular logo you’ll see alongside the Welsh Lamb logo.
The best advice for customer buying lamb is to always look for the logos.
Flavour like no other
Welsh Lamb livestock has been expertly bred to give the most wonderful eating experience. With a taste renowned all over the world, it’s sweet, tender and succulent; it simply doesn’t get any better than this.
Some cuts of lamb suit slower cooking methods, such as shoulder (such as the Aga recipe), breast, neck cuts and leg.
The more tender cuts suit quicker cooking methods and are ideal for mid-week family meals, such as stir-fries and BBQ, using cuts such as leg steaks, stir fry strips, chops, cutlets, and racks.
For a Welsh classic dish, with minimal ingredients and big flavour, you can’t go wrong with this Welsh Lamb Cawl recipe by TV chef Dudley Newbery.
You can find plenty of fantastic recipes for all Welsh Lamb cuts on eatwelshlambandwelshbeef.com.
Full of goodness
Lamb can make an important contribution to a balanced diet. It’s much lower in fat content than people think, being on average 7% fat per 100g for trimmed lamb. It is also a good source of iron, protein, B Vitamins - in particular B12, Zinc and Selenium.
Where to buy
Welsh Lamb is sold across Wales from butcher shops, supermarkets and online (make sure you look for the logos!).
In England, you can find Welsh Lamb in some butchers and supermarkets such as Waitrose, Tesco, Sainsbury’s ‘Taste the Difference’ range and on some Asda fresh meat counters – again look for the logos.
You can also find further information on Butchers’ Clubs here: eatwelshlambandwelshbeef.com.
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