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“Last year was one of extreme highs and lows”

When the Park family won a delicious. Produce Award last year, they little suspected that, a short while later, disaster was about to strike their business. Susan Low travelled to Low Sizergh Farm in Cumbria to find out what happened

delicious. 2016 PRODUCE AWARDS WINNER

For the Park family, 2016 was the best of years and the worst of years. The best of years because in July, Produce Awards judges were unanimous in their praise for Low Sizergh Farm’s raw milk, which they’d only begun selling four months before; and the worst of years because in late December, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) forbade them from selling it. Why? Because a campylobacter (harmful bacteria) outbreak was traced to the farm’s raw milk, so the FSA officers imposed an emergency notice prohibiting the farm from selling it until the issue was resolved and the milk tested clear.

I’d been in frequent touch with Alison Park (pictured) while planning my visit. I’d heard the devastation in her voice after the outbreak, and the determination to bring about the changes necessary to start selling raw milk safely, once again.

The day before I set off, Alison contacted me with good news: the milk had had three consecutive clear tests from the FSA, and they could start selling it again. There was a palpable sense of relief and joy.

A SENSE OF HISTORY

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About Delicious Magazine

Get summer off to a sizzling start with the June issue of delicious. and cook paella on a barbecue, whip up Gill Meller’s outdoor meal or feast on Richard Turner’s epic umami burger. Discover new ways to roast chicken and try our fab G&T cheesecake, Martin Morales’ sea bass ceviche and midweek meals ready in 15 minutes. Along with The World’s Best Cake recipe, there’s our 16-page guide to cooking with dairy including exclusive recipes and foolproof techniques. Bring on the sun…
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