Following a professional introduction by founder of Passion to Inspire, Murray Chapman, Cambridge Regional College and Dingley Dell Pork began a collaboration to deliver an immersive livestock learning opportunity to Culinary Arts students.
Over the course of two days, Level 1, 2 and 3 students visited Mark Hayward, owner of Dingley Dell to gain an insight into livestock, how this is managed from a farming perspective to breed high-quality and sustainable stock and the variety of produce that comes from pig farming.
Chef Lecturer, Anthony Dunball said, “Experiencing livestock first hand is invaluable in understanding where our produce comes from. Mark delivered an excellent educational tour that explained the process of raising the pigs from the alternation of grazing areas, the frequency of feeds and the relationships that pigs can develop with those caring for them. It was clear that the learners were inspired by their visit with comments such as ‘This is the best thing that I have ever seen’ and ‘I would love to do some work experience here’.”
Upon arrival the group boarded a trailer with a tractor to be given an educational tour of the farm including a visit to the fields to observe the pigs in their natural environment. Following the educational tour, the students were given the opportunity to get up close to the pigs to take part in Pig Whispering, a term used for getting close to the animals and to interact with them.
Dingley Dell Pork Owner, Mark Hayward added, “Pigs are intelligent animals. They form close relationships with the people looking after them and they become very trusting. It was fantastic to see how engaged the CRC students were and how forthcoming they were with questions about the farm and the pigs.”
Dingley Dell Pork is a family farming business based on the East Coast of Suffolk that produces higher marbled welfare-friendly pork from their unique Red Duroc-based herd. A range of products are produced at the farm including charcuterie, fresh cuts, cured hams, bacon and sausages for food service and retail.
Anthony Dunball concluded, “Visiting Dingley Dell was a fantastic day that highlighted the food journey of pork from field to fork. We are extremely grateful to Mark and his team for giving our learners the opportunity to experience pig farming. The developing partnership between CRC and Dingley Dell means that we will start to offer this experience annually.”
To show their appreciation of the day, students presented Mark with a thank you card and a bottle of red wine, cheese, and chutney.
Find out more about studying Culinary Arts and Hospitality at Cambridge Regional College. I f you would like to know more about Dingley Dell Pork visit, https://www.dingleydell.com.