Award-Winning Dairy Collaboration is Just Fablas!

10 August 2018
What do you get if you combine milk from an award-winning Welsh dairy with a flair for making ice cream? Something ‘Fablas’ of course!
To make a great product you need great ingredients, and the collaboration between South Wales producer, Fablas Ice Cream, and Ty Tanglwyst Dairy has proved to be a winning association.
With both producers enjoying multiple competition success at the Royal Welsh Show, and more recently Ty Tanglwyst’s cream and butter triumphs at the coveted Great Taste Awards, this summer is shaping up to be ‘hot’ in more ways than one.
Less than two years into production, Fablas scooped the Supreme Champion title in the show’s ice cream competition with their Belgian chocolate ice cream.
While, Ty Tanglwyst – which won the show’s Supreme Champion butter title and a gold award for its semi-skimmed milk - also tasted success in Llanelwedd by being acknowledged by judges in a class in the National Milk Records (NMR) All Wales herd competition.
Mother and daughter team – Michelle and Lauren Evans – began their dairy dream 18 months ago when they bought Vale of Glamorgan ice cream business, Fablas Ice Cream.
Since then the duo, have made the enterprise their own – completely changing the business and opening an ice cream parlour in Cowbridge.
At their production unit on the near-by Penllyn Estate Farm, Lauren and Michelle make the rich, delicious ice cream which also won them two gold and two silver awards at the Royal Welsh Show.
With their family roots in farming, it was natural they would seek a local milk and cream producer, and they turned to multi-award-winning Ty Tanglwyst Dairy in Pyle.
Says Lauren, “We have a great passion for good food, and I like to know where it comes from, and Ty Tanglwyst’s milk has the perfect fat content to make really creamy ice cream.
“The cows are milked in the morning, and it comes to us by 12.30pm, and I make it into ice cream by the following morning – it doesn’t get any fresher than that.”
There are currently 72 flavours in the Fablas ice cream range, with Lauren continually creating new and innovative ice cream varieties. Also, the ice cream is sold at events from the business’ ice cream trailer.
Fablas also make some 20 different sorbets which are sold in the Cowbridge parlour, which in the evenings becomes a cocktail bar, where the sorbets are incorporated into the variety of cocktails recipes they offer. These are also sold at events from their new mobile ‘bar’ - a converted horsebox called ‘The Fablas Filly’.
Rhys Lougher is the fourth generation of his family to farm at Ty Tanglwyst, with the milk and dairy products from the farm’s 110-strong milking herd of pedigree Holsteins sold via doorstep deliveries and commercial deliveries and wholesale.
Receiving a Great Taste Awards gold star for the farm’s double cream, and two gold stars for its salted butter is testament to the quality of the milk produced at Ty Tangwlyst.
He says,” We are delighted to once again have gold stars for our cream and butter, which shows we are maintaining our high standards but also building on our previous success in the national awards which are run by The Guild of Fine Foods.
“We’ve been supplying Fablas with our milk and cream for nearly two years, and they make amazing ice cream,” says Rhys, whose favourite flavour is the RWS Supreme Championship-winning Belgian chocolate ice cream.
“We are both Glamorganshire producers, so it is great we are working together,” he says.
Collaboration with fellow food and drink businesses is important to Rhys, who is part of the Fine Food Wales Cluster – a business led development programme supported by the Welsh Government.
The Fine Food Wales Cluster supports Welsh food and drink producers to help them to grow by creating a platform for joint action by bringing together growing businesses.
Says Rhys, “It is really beneficial to strengthen links with other specialist food producers of a similar scale within the South Wales region.  We share knowledge and ideas and then with closer relations, it is easier to begin working together.”
The Fine Food Cluster is facilitated by the Cywain project which is delivered by Menter a Busnes. The Cywain project supports the development of growth orientated businesses in the food and drink sector in Wales.
Says Cywain Project Manager, Dewi Evans, “The Cluster programme aims to help food and drink producers by bringing them together to share their experiences and knowledge. Clustering is business led with the businesses developing joint projects to access new markets and addressing common barriers to growth.”

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