Paul’s progress with pig enterprise

Spencer's Farm Shop. Pig farmer Paul Sarel, partner Jackie Wynn at the farm shop business they have

Spencer's Farm Shop. Pig farmer Paul Sarel, partner Jackie Wynn at the farm shop business they have run for the last six months. - Credit: Gregg Brown

Rare breed pig farmers who launched their own farm shop business about a year ago have taken on a new butcher.

Spencer's Farm Shop. Pig farmer Paul Sarel, partner Jackie Wynn at the farm shop business they have

Spencer's Farm Shop. Pig farmer Paul Sarel, partner Jackie Wynn at the farm shop business they have run for the last six months. - Credit: Gregg Brown

Paul Sarel, a fifth generation farmer and partner, has been keeping pigs at Sible Hedingham for about the last six years and was joined by his partner, Jackie Wynn about two years ago.

They took over Spencers Farm Shop at Wickham St Paul as an outlet for meat produced from their herd, made up mainly of Gloucester Old Spots and Large Black pigs.

“My parents weren’t farmers but I kind of fell in love with the lifestyle,” said Paul.

Steven Fuller, 24, formerly of Colemans catering butchers at Boxted, has now joined as farm shop butcher.

Spencer's Farm Shop. Pig farmer Paul Sarel, partner Jackie Wynn at the farm shop business they have

Spencer's Farm Shop. Pig farmer Paul Sarel, partner Jackie Wynn at the farm shop business they have run for the last six months. Left is Paul Sarel with new butcher Steven Fuller. - Credit: Gregg Brown

The couple, who also do hog roasts and sell some of their meat to Jimmy’s Farm at Wherstead, offer a range of products at the store.

“As local pig farmers from Sible Hedingham, we were looking for an outlet to retail our rare breed pork. Since taking over we have put in a butchery where we sell our pork and chickens, along with locally sourced beef, lamb, and game,” said Jackie.

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Steven had brought in lots of fresh ideas, she said.

Paul, who keeps 250 to 300 pigs and sells about 10 a week, said he got the farming bug from working for his uncle, Trevor Upson of Tiptree, as a youngster, but carved out a career in mobile phones in the 1980s, opening up shops and running a business for 15 years until deciding to get out.

Spencer's Farm Shop. Pig farmer Paul Sarel, partner Jackie Wynn at the farm shop business they have

Spencer's Farm Shop. Pig farmer Paul Sarel, partner Jackie Wynn at the farm shop business they have run for the last six months. - Credit: Gregg Brown

“It wasn’t any more an industry I wanted to be involved in,” he said.

He is keen on rare breeds and wants to get the message across to the next generation that they should care about what they eat. He started with nine pigs on his 40 acre farm. Now the couple also has about 50 sheep and some chickens. He farrows his pigs naturally inside and lets the piglets out after about 14 to 16 weeks.

“From then onwards, they’ll spend the rest of the time outside,” he said.

The couple, who have one daughter, also have a mobile petting zoo started by Jackie.

Spencer's Farm Shop. Pig farmer Paul Sarel, partner Jackie Wynn at the farm shop business they have

Spencer's Farm Shop. Pig farmer Paul Sarel, partner Jackie Wynn at the farm shop business they have run for the last six months. - Credit: Gregg Brown

Spencer's Farm Shop. Pig farmer Paul Sarel, partner Jackie Wynn at the farm shop business they have

Spencer's Farm Shop. Pig farmer Paul Sarel, partner Jackie Wynn at the farm shop business they have run for the last six months. - Credit: Gregg Brown

Spencer's Farm Shop. Pig farmer Paul Sarel, partner Jackie Wynn at the farm shop business they have

Spencer's Farm Shop. Pig farmer Paul Sarel, partner Jackie Wynn at the farm shop business they have run for the last six months. - Credit: Gregg Brown