The NQM Story

Life as a farmer is a dream fulfilled for Northumbrian Quality Meats founder, Steve Ramshaw.

Although Steve now looks every inch a true Northumbrian hill farmer, his childhood was spent in the West End of Newcastle. Not the most likely of upbringings for a pioneer of sustainable organic farming in the region!

However Steve’s long term determination and commitment to making a life the countryside for himself & wife Julia, paid off when he eventually bought the land at Monkridge Hill from a London development company who had earmarked the land for intensive forestry production.

Luckily Steve’s previous professional life as a quality controler in the building and construction industry came in very handy, as Monkridge Hill Farm simply did not exist – From the farmhouse, every one of the farm buildings and even the majority of field fencing – All had to be constructed from nothing.

But the work had only just begun. With the rapid downturn in agricultural incomes, the Ramshaws were faced with the very real prospect of having to give up on their dream of farming as a way of life. Diversification in one form or another was the only way for Steve to keep the farm he’d worked so hard to build and provide a living for his family.

With a keen interest in the countryside and conservation, Steve had always intended farming Monkridge Hill in a traditional manner combining the highest levels of stocksmanship with environmental sustainable land management. Concerns over imported food quality and traceability raised by the Foot & Mouth crisis, crystallized Steve’s plans to provide the customer with the very best quality organic beef and lamb at a fair price.

And so Northumbrian Quality Meats was born. From it’s initial conception selling lambs reared on the farm to a small band of dedicated customers who appreciated an exceptional product produced to exacting standards of animal welfare and environmental standards, the business has steadily expanded to be one of the leading suppliers of organic meat in the UK today – Without any compromise in any of it’s core values:

  • Quality
  • Welfare
  • Traceability
  • Service

To date, Steve and the business have featured in over 70 publications and numerous TV appearances, including a half hour special program devoted to Steve and the formation of Northumbrian Quality Meats for Tyne Tees Television as part of it’s ‘Change of Life” series.

If you have any questions at all regarding the Northumbrian Quality Meats products or production methods, please do not hesitate to contact us.

For more information on the Northumbrian Quality Meats story, please take a look at the following links (open in a new window):

DEFRA article
“Seeking an organic future”