25th May, 2019

Redditch family-run farm Long Meadow secures £150k business loan

Ross Crawford 7th May, 2019 Updated: 7th May, 2019

REDDITCH family-run farm Long Meadow goats have secured a £150,000 business loan from HSBC UK providing owners John Walley and Charlotte Mercer with an additional 1,000 sq ft of open space.

The funds helped build an extra barn and extended its existing premises in a bid to increase farming capacity after a strong first year in trading.

The business has vowed to use the extra space to rear more one-week-old billy goat kids before turning them out onto the farm’s 16 acres to graze free range.

“Domestically, goat meat is becoming a foodie trend and is finally getting the respect it deserves from chefs across the UK, said Ms Mercer, who thanked HSBC UK for their support.

“We are well-placed to fulfill this demand and most importantly continue to produce high-quality British free range meat without compromising on animal welfare. The extra barn space will allow our business to grow organically.”

The firm believes goat meat is set to hit the mainstream market this year, though it already makes up 60 per cent of red meat consumption globally.

Andy Hipwell, agricultural director for the Midlands, HSBC UK, said: “The new-found popularity of goat meat has meant that the business needed to increase farming capacity and HSBC UK was happy to support these expansion plans, ensuring the business has the capability to meet future demand.

“Jonathan and Charlotte have spotted an opportunity to be early movers in a niche market, which is set to expand over the coming years.”

Although in the UK goats have been traditionally reared for dairy purposes only, consumer demand for its meat is increasing as it’s seen as a healthier alternative to other red meats.

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