MEAD Farm Foods has demonstrated its support for independent coffee businesses by agreeing to provide all the milk for the first Newport Coffee Festival in August.

The Monmouthshire dairy, run by husband and wife dairy farmers Lawrence and Izabela Hembrow, is standing by to provide the festival with some 600 litres of fresh milk straight from their 190-acre farm at Redwick, near Magor.

Izabela said: “I wanted to get involved with the Newport Coffee Festival as soon as I saw it mentioned on social media by organisers Horton’s Coffee House. It’s a perfect fit for Mead Farm Foods and a great opportunity for us to get our home-grown products out to a wider market.

“We expect to have to provide 600 litres for the day which equates to about 20 cows worth of milk.

“We’re pleased to be supporters as both us and the coffee businesses taking part offer sustainable products and to talk about our 'fair trade' milk.”

Izabela said: "From my point of view, I see this event as a great opportunity to promote our milk to the audience of speciality coffee makers.

"Milk is one of three main ingredients in white coffees but it’s forgotten sometimes. The ‘fair trade coffee beans’ term is used a lot as a marketing point in coffee industry but not necessarily ‘fair trade milk’.

"I’m personally a big fan of coffee and when purchasing a flat white I can’t resist to ask about it. I heard long stories about the coffee beans and the fact that people harvesting them are paid fair rates. But when it comes to milk, sometimes person behind the counter doesn’t know much about where it comes from and if it’s from sustainable dairy farm.

"Milk should be treated better than it is now, shouldn’t be cheaper than water and the end customer should remember that good quality milk is produced by well looked after animals which drink a lot of water to produce milk.

"There is a lot of ‘cheap’ milk on the market which is not easy to trace and is ‘cheap’ for the reason. Our milk is a free range milk, fair trade and it comes from the Mead Farm where is produced, harvested and bottled."

Newport Coffee Festival is being held on Saturday, August 11, at Newport Indoor Market. Tickets, which went on sale this week, are £4. Proceeds from ticket sales go to Project Waterfall.

Festival organiser Gavin Horton, owner of Horton’s Coffee House, Newport, said Mead Farm Foods will be providing milk to the coffee roasters and coffee shops taking part on the day.

Gavin said: “We’re delighted to have secured sponsorship in kind from Mead Farm Foods. The milk the farm provides, which we already use in our coffee house, is better for 'stretching' and 'texturing', these are parts of the heating process that give the milk its micro bubbles and silky feel when drinking a coffee or hot chocolate. Basically semi-skimmed milk from Mead Farm acts like full fat milk from a supermarket."

Gavin said: “Horton’s is still the only speciality coffee house in the city of Newport. I’m hoping by organising the festival and bringing roasters to the city to meet up with other independents, it will show the local coffee shops that they too can have a speciality offering.

“We might even see some bigger roaster come to Newport, something we don’t have in the city. I will also be pushing the Speciality Coffee Association (SCA) of which we are a member, to look at holding some of the regional competitions in the city

“There will be live music, coffee tasting, displays of how the pro’s do it, latte art and we shall have the flat white challenge in which competitors have to make the fastest flat white, a little like the omelette of Saturday Kitchen.”

Scott Lewis, also of Horton’s Coffee House, said: “The plan is to make Newport Coffee Festival an annual event with competitions for the baristas of Newport and cupping for the public; how we taste the coffee and grade it.”

Businesses confirmed as taking part in the Newport Coffee Festival are: Clifton Coffee Roasters Roaster; Uncommon Ground Roaster; Welsh Coffee Roaster; Manumit Roaster; Angel Bakery; Global Brands; Clam’s Cakes; Carrot Top Bakery; Mead Farm Foods; BWT (Best Water Technology); Rival Brewing Company and Hivetrike.

For more details on the Newport Coffee Festival and tickets please contact Gavin Horton on 07967 792707 or or @Hortons_Coffee.