ACE looks at what local shops and businesses are doing to reduce their carbon footprint. Here, we focus on Coxford’s the butcher.
Like many businesses in Aylsham, Coxford’s has a long history in the town going back to the 1960s when John Coxford took over another butchers then based in Red Lion Street.
John, who died in 2021, ran Aylsham’s livestock market from 1991 for about 10 years and supported livestock farmers by buying locally even before it became fashionable.
And when he retired in 2014 after 46 years, he handed over to current owners Johnny Payne and Jason Gibbons, who had both worked in the shop since leaving Aylsham High School.
Butchery is a family tradition for the business partners.
Jason’s grandparents ran the former Gibson Brothers butchers in Church Street, Cromer, and Johnny’s great-grandfather was a butcher while his own father, Alan, worked at Coxford’s for 37 years.
Today, the shop is making great strides to become more environmentally friendly.
All their suppliers are as local as possible, says Jason – beef from H G Blake, who source produce directly from East Anglian farmers; pork from Tim Allen in South Creake, and free range chicken from Weddel Swift, Norwich.
Johnny Payne and Jason Gibbons.
And gone are plastic bags – everything is served in recyclable brown paper bags and on compostable trays. Customers are offered biodegradable tote bags, but many bring their own boxes.
Shop lighting is all LED with plans to change over the back store room lights to LED while strip lighting has been reduced to a minimum.
Coxford’s no longer deliver as there is little call for it – and it saves on food miles, so helping to cut their carbon footprint.
“We’re doing what we can to reduce our impact on the environment. It’s a fine balance weighing business costs against environmental benefits, but we’re nailing it,” says Jason.
“A lot of our work involves educating customers about where food comes from, animal welfare and cooking suggestions – we prepare ready-to-cook specials like the Pinwheel, made with puff pastry, pork sausage meat, rosemary & garlic seasoning.
“Supermarkets are always going to be cheap,” says Jason. “But for us, it’s about quality.”
2016 – Best Banger award, Norfolk Food & Drink
2017 – East of England Best Butcher, Countryside Alliance
2021 – Gold Standard for beef burgers, Great British Butcher Awards.
Monday-Tuesday 8.30 – 5.00pm
Wednesday 8.30 – 3.30pm
Thurs-Fri 8.30 – 5.00pm
Saturday 8:30 – 3:30
11 Market Place, Aylsham, Norwich, NR11 6EH
To place an order: Tel: 01263 732280
Other traders in the series . . .
G F White – a traditional butcher
How Barnwells became Norfolk’s first Certified Carbon Balanced printer