Our delicious slow, dry-cured organic gammon and bacon are made from our free-range (pasture raised), organic rare-breed and rare-breed cross (Tamworth) pigs. We home-cure our gammons and bacon thoroughly and carefully by-hand, using a traditional cure with sea-salt, organic cane-sugar and the lowest possible Sodium nitrite content (50 ppm as opposed to 250ppm used by mass producers of ham for supermarkets) and approved by the Soil Association.
Sodium nitrite is an important constituent in a curing salt as it prevents the occurrence of Botulism. Our ham and bacon are 'nitrite-lite'. After curing is completed laboratory tests that we have had conducted demonstrate that the Sodium nitrite residue is 10 parts per million (ppm) and after cooking its even less at less than 7ppm (comparable to a stick of celery or a whole beetroot or even your saliva !). We don’t inject them or immerse them in brine. Neither do we use cure-accelerators, colorants or colour-fixers. The result of using only 80ppm of Sodium nitrite is a soft natural pink colour when cooked which naturally fades sometimes to a faded grey-pink when exposed to light and particularly once sliced. The ham is still edible !
For our smoked products we smoke naturally in our on-farm smokery, using untreated oak shavings from the Scottish Borders.