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melton mowbray pork pies April 5, 2008

Posted by Bradley in : Uncategorized , trackback

If the EU’s Member States don’t object within the next 6 months, Melton Mowbray pork pies will only be able to be made near Melton Mowbray. The notice in the EU’s Official Journal describes some of the history of the pie:

From the middle of the eighteenth century seasonal foxhunters began to centre their hunting activities on the town of Melton Mowbray. During the autumn and winter months, pigs were slaughtered, pork pies were made. These pies were carried in the pockets of the hunt servants to be eaten as snacks as they moved the horses around the villages at the convenience of the wealthy foxhunter. These delicious simple peasant pies soon came to the notice of the hard riding fox hunter who then began to carry them in pouches and pockets to eat while involved in the chase.
These wealthy seasonal hunters took such a liking to the splendid pies that were served on their breakfast table that they expected them to be served at their London clubs. In 1831, Edward Adcock commenced exporting pork pies from Melton Mowbray to London using the daily Leeds to London stagecoach. So the commercialisation and promotion of the Melton Mowbray pork pie began.

Melton Mowbray has been producing these pies for a long time, although given that fox hunting was banned in the UK under the Hunting Act 2004, and the traditional pies are now sold in supermarkets, one wonders about the continuing relevance of the historical description. Melton Mowbray itself hasn’t changed as much as some other places over the last century or so:

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