Here you'll find the answers to the questions we're often asked. If you can't find the answers you need below, please get in touch via the button below.
What is Avian Flu?
Bird flu, or avian flu, is an infectious type of influenza
that spreads among birds. Bird flu mostly spreads from bird to bird through
contact with infected saliva, nasal secretions, or droppings.
The current strain of bird flu that has been devastating our
wild bird populations in the UK since November 2021 originated in poultry
operations in China in 1996 and then spread to wild birds.
Is your poultry still Free-Range?
DEFRA have recognised some of the challenges facing British
poultry farmers, one of which is consumer labelling. With birds having been
housed since November, many farmers have struggled to understand complicated
rules around what to label their birds. DEFRA has now stepped in and put in
place a concession which means poultry reared for meat (hens raised for eggs
have their own set of rules) can still be labeled as free range as long as the
following has been adhered to:
- Poultry must be slaughtered under 12 weeks of age (most Free Range is slaughtered between 8-12 weeks).
- Poultry must be fed a corn-based diet.
- There must be a maimum space requirement of 27.5kg/square meter (this is approximately chickens maximumchickens 9 chickjens per square meter).
- Sheds must contain a minimum of 3% of windows to allow in natural light and ventilation.
How are you caring for your poultry?
Like all poultry producers, we want to see an end to
restrictions as soon as it is safe to do so. In the meantime, we are adhering
to the government’s stipulations above.
Alongside DEFRAs Free-Range amendments, we have been
carefully monitoring the ratio of our poultry to keep them in optimum
condition. We have undertaken weekly testing of our feed to ensure our birds
are not overfed as they are undertaking less exercise than they usually would.
In intensive poultry systems, birds are pumped full of food creating a
faster-growing, bloated bird. Our birds are naturally designed to want to move
around and so getting the balance of what they are consuming right is of
paramount importance to us.
Thankfully our farmer has invested in new sheds which are
providing a light, roomy solution to the current challenge. The sheds are a
vital component in the heath of a bird. If sheds are not in good condition and
they are too cold and drafty, the birds will eat more, causing a health risk.
If sheds are not properly ventilated and allowed to get too warm, then this
causes further complications for their health.
We are changing bedding regularly to keep our birds
contented in their environment, allowing them to scratch and dig as they would
normally in the pasture. In some of our sheds, where space is allowed, we have
added straw bales for birds to climb and peck.
Is Avian flu harmful to humans?
There are lots of different strains of bird flu virus,
however, most of them don't have any effect on human health.
More worryingly than any remote threat to human health, is
the potential threat to wildlife. Minks in Spain, seals in Scotland and
dolphins in South America; a number of mammal species have recently been found
to be infected with H5N1, a highly pathogenic strain of avian influenza. The
detection of the virus in mammals has many concerned about the potential loss
of our wild species, who already face many threats from intensive farming.
What impact does Avian Flu have on small-scale farmers?
Whilst bird flu is causing a horrific impact on wild birds
and farmed poultry, it is also causing significant strain on small-scale
farming communities up and down the country, whose businesses and livelihoods
are at stake. Currently, the government compensation for confirmed cases of
bird flu is £3.50, which is generous for those rearing industrialized poultry
(usually sold at around £2.80 - £3.00 per bird). For Free Range and Organic
farmers, where a ‘finished bird’ costs in the region of £11 to produce, this
goes nowhere near protecting them from going under. Once again the Government’s
policy is geared toward large-scale corporations and is leaving the independent
small-scale farmer under increasing threat.
Not only is there a greater risk for small-scale farmers
currently, but costs have also increased exponentially too. As Free Range birds
are now inside, they are not grazing and eating pasture as part of their diet,
this means they are consuming more feed than they usually would. Couple that
with increasing costs from changing straw bedding more frequently and increased
labor to look after the birds, all of the challenges combined are creating a
perfect storm for our British poultry producers.
When will Avian Flu end?
Industry and government officials are feverishly working on
getting this latest outbreak under control. A vaccine for poultry is under
development, the idea being that it would be consumed by chickens through their
feed. However, just like the development of other vaccines, there is no clarity
on when it is likely to complete regulatory testing.
There are other glimmers of hope on the horizon too. Recent
testing has uncovered some birds are developing natural immunity to some
strains of the influenza. Both British chickens and Polish geese have shown
that they can recover from catching the disease, which up until now, it had
been understood that bird flu was un-survivable by poultry.
APHA and DEFRA are currently meeting every fortnight to
review and discuss the ongoing situation, but there is little hope at present,
that restrictions are going to ease any time soon. Avian flu has always been
more catastrophic during winter months, just like our cold and flu season. With
spring on the horizon, we hope there will be some good news soon for our
Can I visit the farm?
Unfortunately you cannot visit Pipers Farm. The farm is Peter and Henri's home, so at this time we cannot offer unguided tours or visits.
From time to time we do host events and tours on the farm. To be the first to hear about our farm tours and events make sure you are subscribed to our email mailing list.
Do you rear all the meat at Pipers Farm?
Pipers Farm is 55 acres of beautiful permanent pasture with deep hedgerows. At Pipers Farm HQ we rear a herd of native Red Ruby cattle, Suffolk-tup lambs and Swaledale mutton sheep. During the summer months we have a small parcel of Saddleback pigs.
In addition to the livestock reared at Pipers Farm HQ we also work with 30 incredible farms who grow for us to our exacting standards. You can find out more about our farms by visiting our sustainable farming page.
Is all your beef, lamb and mutton grass fed and grass finished?
Yes, all of our beef, lamb and mutton is 100% grass fed and grass finished.
Our cattle, lambs and mutton sheep only eat forage and mother's milk for their entire lives. We simply do not believe in feeding them anything else.
What do your chickens eat?
Our free range chicken's diet is made up of straightforward cereals (corn, barley and wheat) and grass, with the emphasis on developing a healthy digestive system. Chickens are monogastric animals, which means they can’t survive on pasture alone – their stomach systems are not sophisticated enough to extract the energy and protein they need. This means nutrient-packed grains and proteins are a crucial part of their diet. We do not use any additives or chemicals in our feed. We want our chickens to grow slowly, healthily and lead a properly free range life.
Soya is present in the feed for our chickens. We use the minimum amount possible to ensure the welfare of our chickens, this protein is crucial for our birds to thrive while living a properly free range life.
Traditionally, fishmeal from local ports and harbours would have been fed to chickens instead of soya, however this was outlawed in the 1996 following the outbreak of BSE. Fishmeal, as a by-product of the local, inshore fishing fleet is a totally sustainable source of 'high quality, protected protein'. With the ban in place, it has meant that our local feed mills have had no option but to use soya.
We are hopeful that the ban on the use of fishmeal by-products will be lifted. In the meantime we are actively looking at alternatives such as lupins. It is stimulating the challenge to combine the resourcefulness and skills of our local feed millers with our family farmers working these crops into traditional crop rotations.
We will continue to actively seek alternatives to soya and remain hopeful for changes in regulations that will allow us to feed our chickens a completely sustainable diet.
How is your livestock slaughtered?
Our chickens, ducks, turkeys and geese are killed individually in farmyard based slaughterhouses, on most of our farms by the same team that has reared the birds. The humane slaughter of our birds is vitally important to us, we put a great deal of love and care into producing a healthy, happy bird, the last thing we would want is for our birds to have a stressful end to their lives. Every bird is carefully stunned prior to slaughter.
Our pigs, cattle and sheep are taken a short distance to our local, small farm-based abattoir. This is very important to us - it means that the animals are not stressed, the small team are highly skilled craftsmen, and importantly, the carcasses are in perfect condition to be hung on the bone. Every animal is fully stunned by hand prior to slaughter.
We are passionate about high welfare slaughter and are part of the campaign for small abattoirs. You can find out more about this here.
We are completely transparent when it comes to how we slaughter our livestock, if you would like more detailed information we are happy to share this with you. Please do call us on 01392 881 380 or drop us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org we are happy to answer any question you have as we passionately believe in the importance of transparency when it comes to the food we all eat.
Do you use hormones in your meat?
We do not use hormones in our meat.
It is a common misconception that hormones are used in British meat. Using growth hormones in meat production has been banned in the EU since 1989.
Currently, the UK has a ban on both producing and importing hormone treated meat, which means no British farmer (no matter the standards) is able to use hormones in the production of their meat. However, there is pressure on the UK Government to lower their standards and allow imports from countries such as US and Australia, meaning hormone treated meat could be available on our shelves.
Regardless of changes to trade deals and agricultural policy, we will never, ever use hormones in Pipers Farm meat.
How do I order?
You can browse our tempting products, add items to your basket and place your order online. You can also call us to place your order on 01392 881380 and a member of the team will be happy to take this for you.
Is there a minimum order?
Yes, our minimum order value currently is £30. This means that we are able to cover the cost of our 100% recyclable packaging and subsidised delivery charge.
When do I need to place my order by?
All orders must be placed before 1pm for next day delivery. Our farmers and butchers work tirelessly to provide 100% grass fed & pasture reared produce that has been grown in harmony with nature and artisanally butchered. We are constantly updating stock but in order not to miss out on your favourite Pipers Farm goodies, you should place your order as early as possible to avoid disappointment. During busy periods, next day delivery may not always be available.
Can I add to my order once it has been placed?
Currently you cannot add to your order online once it has been placed.
However you can call us on 01392 881 380 and we can add any items to your order 3 working days before your chosen delivery date.
As we do not retain your card details you will need to pay for any items you are adding over the phone.
Can I change my delivery address after I have placed my order?
If you need to change your delivery address after you have placed your order, you will need to contact us 4 working days before your delivery date. Please call us on 01392 881 380 or email email@example.com to update us.
Can you prepare any of my meat bespoke?
Unfortunately, we are not able to accept special requests or create bespoke cuts. As all our animals are reared in harmony with nature, weights can fluctuate but through our careful planning of carcass balance to reduce any waste, we can ensure enough cuts are available for everyone and nothing is ever wasted.
Something I would like to purchase is 'sold out'. Will it become available again?
Our butchers are always working hard to replenish stocks. There are products that are incredibly popular and do sell out quickly, however we do our best to ensure the products that you want are available regularly. The best thing to do is just periodically check back on the website.
If a product has been out of stock for more than a week then do call our Customer Service team on: 01392 881 380 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Something is missing from my order, what do I do?
From time to time items might become unavailable and might be missed from your order. If this is the case you will be refunded for the missing item by the time your order has been delivered.
If something has accidentally been missed from your order please contact out Customer Service team at: email@example.com or: 01392 881380 and they will be happy to help.
Do you offer a subscription service?
Whilst we do not offer a subscription service, you can place your orders in advance to secure your delivery slot.
Can I cancel my order?
Yes, you can cancel your order 4 working days before your chosen delivery date. To cancel your order please email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on: 01392 881 380
Can I request that meat items in my order to be delivered fresh?
We deliver all our meat frozen ready for you to put straight into the freezer.
Can I swap items in the set meat boxes?
We carefully calculate all of our meat boxes to ensure that we have the perfect range of products in each box. We are not able to swap any of our products in our meat boxes. You can select individual items to create a bespoke box filled with your favourite items.
Where do you deliver?
We deliver to the whole of mainland UK, the Channel Islands, and parts of the Scottish Highlands.
You can check whether we deliver to your area by clicking the truck icon at the top of our website and popping in your postcode.
When do you deliver?
We deliver to Mainland UK postcodes Tuesday - Saturday, excluding bank holidays.
We offer a next day service as well as a named delivery day service to this area.
We offer a Standard shipping, delivered 8am - 6pm or Express shipping, delivered 8am - 12pm.
We deliver to Highlands and Islands every Wednesday.
You can check our next available delivery date in your area by clicking the truck icon at the top of our website and popping in your postcode.
What are your delivery charges?
Standard Delivery (8am - 7pm, Tuesday - Friday) on orders over £75 is £3.95
Standard Delivery (8am - 7pm, Tuesday - Friday) on orders under £75 is £5.95
Standard Delivery Highlands & Islands (2 day service) is £14.95
Express Delivery (8am - 12pm, Tuesday - Friday) £7.95* excludes Highlands & Islands
Do you deliver my order yourself?
We do not deliver the orders ourselves, we use DPD as our trusted delivery partner.
DPD offer a ‘predict’ delivery service whereby they inform customers of a one-hour delivery window notified by SMS and/or email – so you don’t have to wait in all day.
Do I need to be home to sign for my delivery?
No you do not need to be at home to sign for your delivery. Simply tell us at the checkout where you would like us to leave your order and our courier will follow your instructions.
How do I track my delivery?
When you place an order online, you will receive a live tracking code from our courier DPD via your provided email or phone number.
On the morning of your delivery the live tracking link will update with a timed delivery slot. You will be able to see exactly where your parcel is and approximately what time it will be delivered to your door.
If you have downloaded the DPD app you will also receive notifications via the app for your order.
Our customer service team track every order between 9am - 5pm to ensure they will be delivered on time.
What should I do if my order hasn't arrived?
If your box has not arrived by the allocated delivery slot please contact our Customer Service team as soon as possible on: 01392 881 380.
Please be aware during busy periods deliveries may be slightly delayed. If your order has not arrived within 2 hours of your delivery slot please give us a call.
When do you take payment for my order?
Payment is taken at the time of placing your order through our secure payment gateway.
Which payment methods do you accept?
We accept, all major credit and debit cards including American Express.
You can also use Applepay, Shoppay at the checkout. Once payment has been made, we do not retain your card details.
Do you retain card details?
We do not retain your card details ourselves, however if your card details are stored on your browser they will 'autofill' at the checkout.
If you are checking out using Applepay or Shoppay your card details will be retained by that service.
How do I earn Pipers Points?
Once you have created your Pipers Farm account here, you can then begin earning your points while you shop!
How do I refer a friend to Pipers Farm?
To refer a friend all you need to do is head to our website sign into your account and head to our rewards page at https://pipersfarm.com/pages/rewards . Here you can locate your individual referal link
to give a friend £10 off their first purchase and earn 1,000 points when they place their first order.
How do I redeem my Pipers Points?
To redeem your points you need to log in to your account before heading to our website here to view your Pipers dashboard, you can then earn points and convert your points into voucher to apply at checkout under our reward section.
Can I use a promotional discount code along with my Pipers Points discount code?
We are only able to process one discount code per order, please be assured that any Pipers Points will be valid towards future orders for up to 6 months.
Will my meat arrive fresh or frozen?
We deliver all our meat frozen ready for you to put straight into the freezer.
The only exception to this is at Christmas time we send out some fresh poultry. Information can be found on the 'storage' tab of each product page.
Is your meat safe to refreeze?
Yes, all Pipers Farm meat is safe to defrost and refreeze following our defrosting and refreezing guidelines.
If any of your meat has thawed slightly during transportation it is completely safe to pop straight into your freezer.
We keep your order in a chilled environment during delivery up until 11pm. It is then out on the road in our clever thermal packaging that stops the temperature from rising above 8C during delivery, so you never have to worry about your food being in transit.
Why is 8C important? According to the Food Standards Agency temperatures over 8C to 63C are classified as 'the Danger Zone'. Food that reaches over 8C can kickstart any bacterial growth, however the colder the temperature the slower bacteria will grow. Cold temperatures in chilling or freezing delay chemical reactions within foods and put any bacteria that may be present on pause.
One of the additional joys of shopping with Pipers Farm is that we are so different to the industrialized, globalised supply chains you find in supermarkets. From the way we rear our animals, right through to how we age, cut and store our meat, every part of our process is very different and the risks associated with harmful bacteria are proportionally so.
We have tested, trialed and controlled every step of our process for over 35 years to provide you with complete confidence in the food you eat.
If you have any questions, we're always happy to help give you guidance. Please call us on 01392 881380 and a member of the team will be happy to help you.
How long can I keep my meat in the freezer?
All of our meat can be kept in the freezer for at least 6 months.
How long will my meat keep in the fridge?
All meat products will last 3-4 days in the fridge.
However we do recommend that you store all your meat in the freezer and take out what you need when you need it.
How will my meat be packaged?
All our Pipers Farm meat is blast frozen at the optimum moment ready for you to pop straight in your freezer.
Each individual portion is packaged in an outer wrap ready for it to be safely stored in the freezer. On each pack you'll find details of the product, the best before date and any ingredients.
Where can I find cooking instructions?
All our cooking instructions can be found on each of our products pages on our website. Simply search the product and scan down the page to find the cooking instructions.
We also have plenty of inspiring recipes on our journal.
Ingredients & Allergens
Do you all your products have nutritional information?
As a small farm we are unable to provide nutritional information for Pipers Farm meat products.
Many of our other producers do provide nutritional information, you can find this on the ingredients section of each product.
Where can I find ingredients and allergens for your products?
All ingredients and allergens are listed on each product page under. You will find all allergens highlighted in bold.