HRH The Prince of Wales has visited the Castle of Mey to view the herd of native Angus cattle introduced by The Queen Mother that now supply some of the highest quality beef in UK supermarkets.

The Prince, alongside farm managers Sandy and Danny McCarthy and farm consultant Malcolm Macrae, embarked on a short tour of the castle grounds and the adjacent Longoe Farm with Sainsbury’s director Judith Bachelar and Aberdeen Angus Cattle Society president Paul Jeenes and chief executive Barrie Turner.

The Sainsbury’s family previously owned a herd of A-A cattle, located in Aberlour in Moray, that were registered under the herd name Kinermony. The herd was renowned for producing quality A-A beef and was sold in Sainsbury’s stores, but, in 1983, the Sainsbury’s family sold the Kinermony herd.

In 2012, Sainsbury’s partnered with The Queen Elizabeth Castle of Mey Trust and AACS to restore its original herd of native Angus cattle under the Kinermony name. As a result of this, Sainsbury’s reintroduced Kinermony beef to it shelves on a trial basis in April 2019.

Mr Macrae is the farming consultant who advises on the management of the herd and the flock of North Country Cheviot sheep at Longoe Farm. He said: “The A-A cattle at the Castle of Mey are much in demand and we are proud that it’s bloodline contribute to the superb Kinermony beef product being enjoyed across the country.

"Sandy and Danny McCarthy, the farm managers here, work very hard to ensure the highest quality among our livestock. It is a credit to them, as well as to the commitment by The Queen Mother and The Prince of Wales, that our pure-bred herd is recognised as a standard-bearer for premium beef.”

Ms Batchelar, director of Sainsbury’s Brand, said: “This is a milestone moment in Sainsbury's history. As we celebrate our 150th Birthday we are also re-establishing our A-A credentials with the reintroduction of Kinermony Aberdeen Angus beef into our stores. The revival of Kinermony beef wouldn’t have been possible without the help of HRH The Prince of Wales and The Castle of Mey Trust.

“It was in 2012 during a visit to the Castle of Mey that we were first introduced to the AACS by HRH. Now, after six years of breeding and careful selection, we have a stud of Kinermony A-A Bulls, producing genetics that we are truly proud of and in turn produce a distinctive range of A-A beef for our customers.

“Thanks to Longoe Farm for the hard work and dedication that they have put in over the last six years and also ABP Food Group, who have prudently managed the rearing and growing of the Kinermony animals to make this a reality. It really is a very special moment for us all.”

Mr Turner said: “The AACS is very pleased to be involved with Sainsbury’s and The Queen Elizabeth Castle of Mey Trust on this project. We work with our many partners through performance recording and improvement to select for the best characteristics that are within the genetic make-up of Aberdeen Angus cattle that deliver the ultimate beef-eating experience for consumers.”