Mary Quicke runs Quicke’s, a £4.0m turnover farmstead cheese making business. Quicke’s Cheese is the largest British naturally matured traditional cheddar maker. Cheese has been made on the farm during the family’s 470 year history, and Mary is the fourteenth generation on the farm, running the business since 1987. The cheese is multi award winning, for instance winning Best Cheddar at the British Cheese Awards three years out of seven, winning Best English Cheese in 2015 and consistently winning trophies at major cheese competitions in the UK. The cheese sells to key outlets in the UK, and over one third to export, mainly US and Australia.
The 1500 acre farm has 600 cows grazing outside for most of the year, grows crops to feed the cows, as well as to sell and support wildlife in extensive environmental schemes. It has a farm shop selling cheese and foods locally foraged. The business employs 34 people in Newton St Cyres, Exeter, Devon, England.
Mary is developing the Academy of Cheese with cheese industry colleagues in the UK. This is a 4-level certification system including tasting inspired by the American Cheese Society’s Certified Cheese Professional programme. She is a Dairy Sector Board Member of AHDB, the levy body that supports farming from levies collected from farm products. She is active in promoting the requirement for scientifically knowledgeable, technically capable, practically engaged people to support the applied sciences of farming and cheese making.
She writes a monthly blog, Mary’s Dairy Diary and writes an award-winning column for Devon Life.