Artisanal butter is on the rise! | The Scottish Farmer


DEMAND FOR ‘artisanal’ butter has skyrocketed under lockdown, with the public and specialty bakers wanting more and more.

Nick and Hilary Sinclair started The Edinburgh Butter Company in 2018, after seeing the rise in popularity of artisanal butter in other countries. They now mark the end of 2021 with sales increasing 213% over the past 12 months, with revenue showing an increase of almost 130% over that period.

Volume sales of the company’s cultured butters range increased from 15,433 kg in 2020 to 48,367 kg in 2021. Revenue increased from £ 240,759 to £ 464,716 during the same period. Sales and revenue are expected to increase an additional 60% by the end of 2022.

Using live lactic culture and local cream – and without additives or preservatives – the couple have developed a line of butters that include logs of salted cultured butter that are popular with restaurants and hotels. The company also produces cultured unsalted butter sheets, which are preferred by bakers for supporting pastry rolling, one of the few UK manufacturers to do so. This year also saw the launch of their Buttermilk, which has proven popular with chefs across the UK.

Mr. Sinclair said, “We have seen a growing appreciation and awareness of artisanal butter over the past few years, and that has translated directly into sales. In addition to customer demand for our butter from independent retailers, we have also developed strong relationships with chefs and in particular professional bakers across the country.

“We are now selling to some of the best bakeries and kitchens in the UK – customers who would probably have chosen imported butter in the past. We are one of the few producers to make sheet butter, so it is a key factor in our growth.

“The demand for local products with a reduced carbon footprint continues to grow and although at present a large majority of sheet butter is imported into the UK from France, there is a real opportunity for UK producers. like us to take advantage of the strong – a quality cream produced here on our doorstep to develop the domestic market, ”he said. “We certainly felt a real respect for our butter – a natural product with integrity, which above all tastes delicious!

Around 23,000 tonnes of leaf butter are currently imported into the UK each year, almost exclusively from France. With UK large-volume production of premium dairy products, with the high fat content required for butter, and UK milk’s greenhouse gas footprint at just 40% of the world average, the market British butter is well positioned to grow, Sinclair said. .

This was reinforced in 2021 with import restrictions linked to Brexit, shortages of cream on the continent and a flooding at the factory of French producer Lescure.

  • The Edinburgh Butter Company is present in a number of independent retailers, as well as in artisan bakers such as The School of Artisan Food, Twelve Triangles and Friends in Knead; hotels such as Rocco Forte’s Balmoral Hotel, Moor Hall, Hampton Manor – as well as a host of Michelin-starred restaurants through their network of suppliers.