The Winterton family have been farmers and graziers in Leicestershire for over 200 years. The Winterton’s originally farmed land in Thurmaston until the 1970’s. The farm is now situated between Wanlip, Rothley and Cossington where they breed, and graze English Longhorn cattle and they also graze Welsh Black cattle sourced directly from North Wales. The Winterton family have always been extremely proud of their farming heritage, using traditional farming methods to produce a sustainable product of great provenance. Michael and his brother John farmed the land until John’s untimely death in 2001. Around this time, Michael’s son, Phil joined the farm, following in the footsteps of his father and raising cattle to the same high standards.
Aware that most meat these days is purchased in the supermarket with little knowledge of the meat quality and animal welfare, it was their passion to supply their native breed beef directly to the consumer. When the butchers shop came up for sale in 2016, they were delighted to have the opportunity to fulfil their dream of bringing their family farm to your fork.
Phil’s wife, Emma joined the family business in 2020, following a career in retail management. Emma trained as a manager at Harrods and spent time working in the food halls and the food buying office. Emma is also the granddaughter of arable farmers so with these two factors combined, it made sense for her to get involved and help drive the business forward. In 2021, the Winterton family rebranded the shop from ‘Roberts Butchers’ to ‘Winterton’, extending and refitting the shop to create a modern, welcoming feel, with more space to sell a wider range of local produce. Sadly, Michael passed away in 2022 and Phil and his brother Will, alongside their cousins, Nick and Ed now continue to develop and grow the business ready for the next generation.
As a family, we have always been passionate about food provenance, and we feel it is important to know where your food comes from. We are always searching for and championing local farmers and producers in order to support and connect them to the consumer which provides the customer with a greater knowledge of the food that they are eating.
Native breeds are slower growing, longer to mature and are generally not favoured by supermarkets and mass producers but the flavour and tenderness of native breeds is far superior. At Winterton butchers, we believe that native breeds survival is dependent on people eating them which is why we have chosen to farm them.
Our Longhorn and Welsh Black cattle are grass fed, grazing the land in the summer months and in the winter months, they feed on silage made on our farm. Grass fed beef contains up to three times more omega-3 than grain fed beef which is associated with many health benefits. Our suppliers of venison and lamb also grass feed their animals to ensure the highest quality and flavour. Grass fed meat has less saturated fat and much higher vitamin levels than grain fed animals which is essential for the heart, skin, brain health, immune function to name just some of the benefits.
We care deeply how our animals are reared. We pride ourselves on high welfare standards and our farm is Red Tractor Approved. We only work with suppliers that we know and trust, who also run accredited businesses. Both ourselves and our suppliers use local abattoirs in order to reduce travel and stress in our animals.
With good animal welfare comes quality and flavour. We believe you can really taste the difference in our products. We cure our own bacon, and our beef is dry aged for a minimum of 28 days which maximises the tenderness and flavour.
Looking after the environment is something of great importance to us. Our local produce has low food miles. We never use artificial fertilisers. Instead, we grow clover in our grass fields which puts nitrogen back into the soil to help the grass grow. Clover is also great for the birds, bees and insects. In the shop, we use paper packaging which is recyclable.
We endeavour to use local suppliers wherever possible. Our lamb is sourced locally from Queniborough in Leicestershire and Derbyshire, our pork is from a farm in Nottinghamshire and our venison is from Charnwood Forest. We also sell a range of products from local suppliers, including Manor Farm Yogurts in Thrussington, Hambleton Bakery bread and cakes which are freshly baked and delivered daily, Drivers Pickles and Samosa Wallah samosas and onion bhajis to name but a few.