Norfolk goat’s cheese maker says Brexit could help him compete with French imports

PUBLISHED: 08:50 26 January 2019 | UPDATED: 09:15 26 January 2019

Sam Steggles of goat's cheese producer Fielding Cottage. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Sam Steggles of goat's cheese producer Fielding Cottage. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2015

A Norfolk goat’s cheese maker says Brexit could trigger major opportunities for his expanding business, as it seeks to wrestle market share away from French imports.

Sam Steggles of Fielding Cottage at Honingham, outside Norwich – who will speak at the Norfolk Farming Conference on February 7 – has recently agreed a deal to supply two national restaurant chains with a combined total of more than 200 outlets.

“We go live on March 13, which ties in very nicely with the timing of Brexit,” he said. “Whether that is pure coincidence or someone further up the chain in these organisations has made that call, I don’t know. But it seems a very big coincidence.

“We are replacing French goat’s cheese. From our point of view the difference in price between our cheese and French cheese has been getting smaller because of what has been happening with sterling and the Euro. So with Brexit, there is more of a reason for these restaurants to buy our cheese.

“Everyone is worried about Brexit, but I think it is going to provide our business with some huge opportunities.”

Mr Steggles expects his business to grow from producing a tonne of cheese a month, to a tonne of cheese a week by the end of the year, and he is also exploring exports outside the EU to countries including the US, Canada and Australia.

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