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Christmas dinner with a Genuine Jersey flavour

Date: 17/11/2005 | Posted by John Garton
Genuine Jersey turkeys and geese will be available for the first time this Christmas from Woodside Farm, a member of the Genuine Jersey Products Association (GJPA).

The Trinity-based farm has been granted approval to add locally-reared poultry to its growing list of ‘Genuine Jersey’ products, which already includes Genuine Jersey Tender Beef, successfully launched earlier this year.

About 90 geese and 325 bronze meat turkeys have been living free-range on the farm feeding on the grass and cereals grown there. The birds, which were brought into the Island as day-old chicks, will be hand-plucked and game-hung to tenderise the meat and improve the flavour.

Farmer Charlie Gallichan says the poultry, which can be ordered from Woodside’s on-site farm shop, complement their existing products. “We are trying to produce local meat to a high quality and this seemed like the logical next step after the tender beef. It also fits in well with our integrated farm plan because we have grassland available from late summer and autumn,” he explains. “These are exceptionally free range birds because they’ve hardly ever stayed in the field. In fact, one morning we woke up to find about 90 of them on our front lawn!”

The poultry were granted status as a Genuine Jersey product at the Association’s latest committee meeting, along with a new venture called Crabs Direct, which is run by the Burt family - Les, Tina and their two daughters Chloe (17) and Gemma (15).

Les, an experienced Jersey fisherman, decided to diversify and now cooks, picks and sells his own catch directly to the public. The family has operated from a specialised van at Corbiere car boot sale since April and hope to expand with a second vehicle next year so that they can take part in other local markets.

“Crabs Direct is already very popular and we have regular customers who look for us each week,” says Tina. “We know that some of them are genuine Jersey too because they ask us for velvet crabs, which is a real local delicacy. We are very pleased to be a member of Genuine Jersey because that’s what we are.”

GJPA chairman Ken Syvret welcomed the new products and member, saying: “The increasing popularity of the Genuine Jersey Products Association reflects both that local producers are rightly proud of the high standards they achieve and that the Association is well recognised by Islanders, who realise it is a mark of quality and of goods that directly benefit the Island.