Britain’s only farmer-owned motorway service station is planning to use next week’s Farmhouse Breakfast Week to boost sales of its own produce.
Tebay services on the M6 in Cumbria has been voted north-west breakfast champion by the Home-Grown Cereals Authority, because of its local food sourcing policy and farm shop.
Owner and director of the services, John Dunning, started by supplying beef and lamb from his 325ha (800-acre) hill farm when he won a tender to run the brand new services in 1971.
His meat now appears in the restaurant and the farm shop alongside local sausages, bacon, vegetables and bread.
“We’ve been aiming to get as much of our product as possible into the services because it shortens the supply chain and means a better return for us.”
The restaurant and farm shop complement each other, he added, with less popular cuts of meat ending up in the kitchens, while prime cuts were sold in the shop or at Borough Market in London.
Mr Dunning says the message of traceability and British food has added cachet to the business.
“We have the same sort of prices as other outlets and we have a lot of very regular customers.”
Tebay serves up to 1000 breakfasts a day and catering manager Alistair Urquhart said he planned to mark Breakfast Week by giving tastings of local produce.
“We offer both a Cumberland sausage and a mass-produced sausage, for which there is still great demand. “