A turkey farmer has encouraged people to support local as his farm opened for business ahead of the festive season.

Bridgers Farm in Hurstpierpoint, which is one of only 30 turkey farms in the UK independently recognised for producing turkeys to the Golden Turkey® standard, is now accepting orders for Christmas.

The Golden Turkey standard guarantees traditional breeds of turkey renowned for their flavour which are free-range, reared to full maturity and are dry plucked and game hung.

Golden Turkeys® are never given additives for growth promotion and are reared up to twice as long as the majority of commercially produced turkeys resulting in well matured, flavoursome meat.

Anthony Harris from Bridgers Farm said: “We are very much open for business and are encouraging customers to order their turkeys as usual and support small, local producers such as ourselves.

“We are proud to be one of only 30 turkey farms in the country recognised as producing the very best turkeys for Christmas. Help us to preserve these time-honoured methods of rearing turkeys by supporting your local turkey farmer if you can.”

Golden Turkey® farmers have the following top tips for cooking the perfect Christmas turkey:

  • Don’t go from fridge to oven. Take the turkey out of the fridge two hours before cooking. This means more even cooking all the way through and a juicier bird.
  • Avoid stuffing the cavity. If your turkey is trussed, it is best to remove the string before cooking to allow the air to circulate and more even cooking. For this reason, we don’t recommend stuffing the main cavity as it can stop the turkey cooking evenly and properly. You can place an apple or peeled onion in the cavity instead for added flavour.
  • Cook your turkey upside down.  Cook your turkey breast side down to start with as the white meat cooks quicker than the dark leg meat and wings. This keeps the juices in the breast and prevents it from becoming dry.
  • Rest.  After cooking, allow the turkey to rest for 30-60 minutes but do not cover! The bird continues to cook even when it is out of the oven and covering the bird can result in the meat becoming dry and overdone. It can also result in soggy skin.