FARMER Robert Goss says a trip to Australia to visit his sister was the inspiration to start a Wagyu beef herd at the farm his family has worked for generations.

Mr Goss from Worton near Devizes launched Wiltshire Wagyu two years ago and now he is ready to start selling the beef at a Devizes butchers.

He said: "It was on a trip to Australia to visit my sister where I first tasted a Wagyu steak- the best meat I had ever tasted.

"After extensive research and lengthy phone calls with experienced Wagyu breeders, I started to breed my very own Wagyu.

"I decided this venture would be worth exploring as it complemented our core business. With the first birth of a Wagyu calf on Home Farm back in January 2017, Wiltshire Wagyu was born!

"Since starting this venture in 2016, we have grown from just one animal to now a herd of 20 animals. We have deliberately grown gradually, keeping in mind our ethos of responsibly, locally reared meat."

Now his first Wagyu is going to be available this month June at CW Butchers in The Brittox, Devizes.

Mr Goss said: "Chris Webber and myself are really enthusiastic about this new, exciting project opening up to the Wiltshire market. This is the first time a Wagyu product that has been born and bred in Wiltshire is available. We continue to grow the herd and are looking forward to new opportunities that arise, and tasting the first Wagyu."

Mr Goss joined the family farm after graduating from Reading University with a degree in Agricultural Business Management.

He said: "I joined the family partnership. We have had a long standing tradition of dairy farming and currently breed, buy and sell dairy heifers. This has given me a great foundation in understanding how to rear and breed cattle."

He explained that Wagyu is a unique Japanese breed of beef with Wa meaning Japanese and gyu is cow. Wagyu have always been renowned for their physical endurance due to their extra-special intramuscular fat.

They were selected by the Japanese farmers and monks due to this marbling which provided them with a readily available energy source. This marbling of the meat is also what creates their bespoke, melt-in-your-mouth taste and texture.

Mr Goss said: "The finished product is amazing whether in burgers, joints or steaks. Due to the low melting point of the fat, this flavour is reabsorbed back into the meat as it cooks making its unique taste.

"Not only tasty, Wagyu is scientifically healthier. Containing a higher percentage of mono-unsaturated fats, Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids than any other kind of beef, Wagyu is a better alternative to any other.

"To maximize this intramuscular fat, our Wagyu need to be kept calm and happy. In Japan, they use massaging to help this, along with feeding them beer to induce their appetite. We have therefore emulated this with our Wagyu to maintain this tradition."

When the spring months start the hers has access to acres of lush Wiltshire pasture to maximize their growth and development, where they stay until Autumn draws in.