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Episode 1

In Living Memory, Series 17 Episode 1 of 4

Duration:
28 minutes
First broadcast:
Wednesday 23 January 2013

In 1982, agriculture minister Peter Walker launched Lymeswold cheese - the first new British cheese for 200 years, and, for a while, the must-have dairy product for gourmets. Partly intended to deal with milk over-production, it was also meant to show the French we could beat them at their own game.

The public went mad for Lymeswold but, within 10 years, sales had dwindled, and the makers, Dairy Crest, pulled the plug. It had been a case of wild over-optimism: flushed with the original success, Dairy Crest had expanded production far beyond what the market could take, and moved from a craft-based process to a mass-produced machine-made product. It became a byword for inauthentic marketing hype, and a butt of Private Eye jokes.

Jolyon Jenkins speaks to dairy veterans about what went wrong, and finds a small cheesemaker in the Highlands who is making Lymeswold still.

Producer/presenter: Jolyon Jenkins.

  • British Blue Cheese

    Sheila Dillon finds out why new British blue cheeses are pushing their way into the market

  • West Highlands Dairy

    West Highlands Dairy
    West Highlands Dairy - where Lymeswold cheese is still made today.

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