Young entrepreneurs shaking up the Scottish food and drink industry

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Buffalo farmer Steve Mitchell’s Scotland Food & Drink Excellence Award win carries extra weight with big clients.

Steve Mitchell is a fifth-generation farmer at the family’s Boglily Farm outside Kirkaldy with innovation at the heart of his thriving business.

He’s utterly convinced that if The Buffalo Farm stands still long enough they’ll go backwards, so he’s embracing digital to take the family farm to new heights.

“We’re always looking for the next opportunity,” he says, “Social media has become such a big thing - how you interact with your customers and get that brand awareness out there.”

In December, Steve took to Facebook with a plea for volunteers after one spirited buffalo calf, Bert, vaulted the fence and ran for the woods.

Read more: Buffalo farmer raises the steaks

The prodigal calf soon returned, but it was enough to put Steve off drinking alcohol on his own stag do should he have to take off and wrangle Bert back home.

The Boglily farm makes frequent use of social networking to promote deals, show snippets of everyday farming life and share special moments with their growing community.

Steve admits he couldn’t have imagined the business targetting “gym and slim” customers, but successfully promoting the health benefits of buffalo meat has helped the farm carve a lucrative niche in the Scottish food and drink industry.

The Buffalo Farm triumphed in the 2016 Meat category, but the Auchtertool farmer admits he felt privileged to even be nominated.

“It was a huge honour and it had a great impact on our business,” he says.

“I was just honoured to be shortlisted against established brands and names I’ve got huge respect for.

“When it comes to going and visiting bigger customers in particular, that credibility carries a lot of weight and has definitely opened up doors.”

The Scotland Food & Drink Excellence Awards

The Buffalo Farm impressed judges in 2016 with their buffalo fillet steak - a moment of validation for his team and credibility for the brand he has worked so tirelessly to build. Now it’s your turn.

The Scotland Food & Drink Excellence Awards 2018 are calling for entries from the cream of the crop of Scotland’s Food and Drink industry - those businesses and individuals who are leading the way with innovation, enterprise, and quality. For more information, or to enter, click here or watch the video above.