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    The Newmarket Sausages Association is proud to announce that we have been awarded a PGI or a Protected Geographical Indicator!

    In doing so we are the 50th company to given the status by governing body DEFRA. There are three companies within the association, namely Tennants, Powters and Musk’s.

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    What is a Newmarket Sausage?

    A Newmarket Sausage is a seasoned pork sausage made using fresh, primal cuts from either the whole carcass, the shoulder or belly (no offal or by-products, mechanically recovered meat (MRM) or emulsified rind are permitted) and contain a selection of herbs and spices. They are a natural colour of the meat, deep pink-beige with a few flecks and have a dry and coarse texture with visible pieces of lean meat and fat, which give the sausage a slight bite when eaten. The taste is predominantly of pork and moderately seasoned from the herb and spice mix used in its production although the taste and colour may vary according to the butcher’s particular blend of seasoning. Traditional seasoning for Newmarket Sausages includes combinations spices and must make up to a maximum 3% of the finished product.

    In addition, natural flavourings of dried lemon as an antioxidant, sulphites as a preservative and sodium phosphate as a binding agent can also be added. The sausages must have a minimum meat content of 70% which includes a fat content of typically less than 20%. The balance is bread, rusk & water depending on the manufacturer’s recipe. Newmarket Sausages are usually presented in lengths of about 10 to 15cm long, 2.5 to 3.5 cm in diameter, and are slightly curved in appearance. They are also produced as: a chipolata style sausage which is between 8-12cm long, a cocktail sausage (6cm) and a ‘jumbo’ (between 20-24cm). They are sold through retailers and delicatessens either in pre packed or loose from the counter.

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    The History of Newmarket Sausages

    The town of Newmarket has been a famous horse racing venue since the 17th century. The sausage evolved from the pig-keeping tradition associated with horse racing stables, where pigs were kept to graze on stable scraps and keep racing yards free of debris. By the early 20th century, a number of butchers in Newmarket had begun producing sausages as proofed in the censuses of 1881& 1891.

    Modern stables no longer keep pigs but the East Anglia area of the UK, where Newmarket is situated, is a well-known for pig farming. This is due to the predominant arable/ cereal farms concentrated in the area where the pigs are fed on the cereal by-products. The bread originally used in the sausages was leftover loaves from local bakers who found it a handy outlet for day-old bread which had become too stale to sell as ‘fresh’. This custom is still maintained today.

    Newmarket Sausages soon became a popular snack with the horseracing fraternity, which included members of the Royal Family. The Sausages have been popular with the Royal Household since the beginning of the 19th Century.

    Popularity of the sausages soared far and wide beyond the horseracing circles, and an extract from the Newmarket Local History Society’s chronicles records notes of a railway clerk spending 2 or 3 hours every race week booking parcels of the sausage on the race meeting trains during the busy horse-racing season, when railway communications became more frequent.

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    The History of Sausages (Page 2)

    The recipe for the Newmarket sausage is unchanged since the days of Queen Victoria. The original recipe lives on passed down through the generations. The sausages continue to be made to the same exacting standards as they always have been. Handmade with care in small batches, the sausages are free from colouring and additives.

    Newmarket has been associated with horse racing since King James I organised the first race on the site which was run in 1622. The King had visited Newmarket on 27th February 1604 when he went hare coursing on the heath surrounding the town and since then he became a frequent visitor to the town. The world’s oldest surviving horse race, The Town Plate, dating from 1665 was established by Charles II at Newmarket and Newmarket Sausages have traditionally been given as part of the prizes in this race since 1952.

    The first reference to Newmarket and sausages dates specifically to 19th November 1618 when James I was visiting the area. He held a banquet to celebrate the 18th birthday of his son Charles (later King Charles I) described in a letter from the Chamberlain to Sir Dudley Charleton;

    “The king brought a great chine of beef, the Marquis of Hamilton four pigs incircled (sic) with sausages, the Earl of Southampton two turkeys, another six partridges, and one a whole tray full of buttered eggs so all passed of pleasantly." The Marquis of Hamilton, a Scottish nobleman would have obtained the sausages locally, there being no means of refrigeration in those days.”

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    The History of Sausages (Page 3)

    The Newmarket Sausage is inextricably linked to the races. They were sold as a quick hot snack to eat at the races and in the various hostelries during the racing season. Race-goers also bought them to take home after the event. In 1849, Sylvanus describing a tour to the Newmarket area in Bentley's miscellany (edited by Charles Dickens) stayed at the White Hart Inn, Newmarket where, after a visit to see the horses, he and his companions “returned to breakfast on Newmarket Sausages and water-cresses”.

    Sausage production was inevitable in Newmarket given its location in Suffolk. The county had long been a major producer of good pork, the meat of the black Suffolk pig was prized as being sweet and tender. In the Newmarket area stable yards and local cottagers kept pigs which were allow to roam freely and which fed on scraps and forage. The town had a dozen or so butchers in the late 19th and early 20th century, many breeding, fattening and slaughtering their own pigs to supply their own sausages.

    During the racing season the demand for sausages was tremendous, Baily’s sporting magazine in 1860 reporting; “we heard on our arrival that every stall at Newmarket had its occupier, as every bedroom its tenant, and the sausage machines had never ceased working”. Sausages were also sold at the major markets and fairs in the town, Gardener in 1851 claiming that the November 8th Cattle Market, which was also a pleasure fair, was particularly noted for its sausages.

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    The History of Sausages (Page 4)

    Although a dozen butchers were said to be operating in Newmarket in the early 20th Century each producing their own sausages, gradually the number of shops declined leaving just three producers of the Newmarket Sausage. Although the earliest reference to Newmarket and sausages is in 1618 (given above), a distinct type of sausage called the ‘Newmarket Sausage’ only appears in the literature in the mid 1800’s, the 1849 reference above being the earliest so far discovered.

    More recently there have been numerous references to the Newmarket Sausage in cookbooks and guide books. They are described in the ‘Traditional Foods of Britain’, (Laura Mason with Catherine Brown, Prospect Books 1999) part of an inventory of the food products from all the regions of the European Union and Clarissa Dickson-Wright, in her latest book, recalls her earliest experience with Newmarket sausages. Google has 4190 references to the “Newmarket sausage”. The Newmarket Local History Society in its review of Newmarket history gives a full write-up to the local production of sausages, substantiating all that is claimed. One producer of Newmarket Sausages has been supplying their sausages under Royal Warrant since 1907 and are currently Warrant holder as supplier to H.M. The Queen. Another producer’s sausages are given as a traditional prize to the winning jockeys of the country’s oldest horse race, the Newmarket Town Plate. Reference is also made to Newmarket Sausages by the British Tourist Authority in their publication ‘Taste England’ and website www.EnjoyEngland.com

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    Our Members

    Musk's are makers of the Original Newmarket Sausage, as well as other varieties. Using only the finest ingredients this family run business has been granted 4 Royal Warrants during its history for supply of sausages to the Royal Family, including currently H.M. The Queen.

    www.musks.com




    Powters is a family run modern traditional butchery business, specialising in sausages. Located on Wellington Street, off Newmarket High Street, Powters is famous for the Celebrated Newmarket Sausage which is still made to its original recipe. They sponsor the winning jockey of the country's oldest horse race, the Newmarket Town Plate.

    www.powters.com




    Established for 23 years, Eric Tennant Quality Butchers is owned by Master Butcher, Eric Tennant and managed by Master Butcher, Paul Bacon. The shop also employs 8 fully qualified butchers, ensuring you will get the advice you need and service you deserve from the Newmarket traditional butchers.
    Located in The Guineas Shopping Centre, Newmarket. 01638 661 530

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    Contact NSA

    Please use the form below to contact us, write us a letter, or give us a call!










    Newmarket Sausage Association
    c/o 4 Goodwin Business Park
    Newmarket
    Suffolk
    CB8 7SQ