Leading cereal brand Weetabix has started a campaign calling on the government to create a new county, called ‘Weetabixshire’.
The brand wants the 50 mile radius location around the Weetabix Mills in Burton Latimer, North Northamptonshire, where all the wheat in Weetabix Original is grown, to be formally recognised as a county in its own right.
“It’s all about supporting our brilliant farmers in the local area who pour their passion in to every ‘Bix to produce the best wheat and whose hard graft is at the heart of every box,” the brand said in a Change.org petition.
“We believe this is something that should be both celebrated and protected. Our iconic golden grain and our Weetabix way is what makes every breakfast so special, and we want to mark that by declaring the land it comes from as a destination in its own right!”
The campaign is also a fitting tribute to their 1,100-strong workforce, who use wheat from Weetabixshire to make 11 million Weetabix biscuits every day, equating to almost 8,000 every minute – highlighting the passion, craftmanship and care that goes into every grain of their beloved wheat.
Three 7ft tall ‘Welcome to Weetabixshire’ signs were erected in the Northamptonshire town of Burton Latimer, to mark the centre of Weetabixshire, and on the edges of St Neots and Rutland to pointedly mark the new proposed county lines.
Weetabix have also rebranded the local Burton Latimer Town Cricket Club as Weetabixshire Cricket Club and Meadowside Primary School in Burton Latimer is now Weetabixshire Primary School, bringing the brand’s affection for its hometown to life and bringing the community together.
Weetabix farmer, Jim Beaty, said: “My farm is less than a mile from the Weetabix mills and I can smell the Bix being made every morning, so seeing all these people come down to the local area in support of Weetabixshire, fills me with such pride. It shows how much the community values us for the jobs we do on a daily basis, and I can’t express my gratitude enough towards them.”
The petition, launched on November 10, has more than 750 signatures as of 3.30 pm on Monday (17), with many appreciating the support to the local farmers.
Lorraine Rothwell, Head of Brand at Weetabix, said: “We’re proud to say our sourcing is local and facilitated by our network of incredible farmers, who are the backbone of Weetabix, so we wanted to show it off!”
“Keeping our sourcing local means we can support the farming community right here in Northamptonshire, working directly with growers who share our passion for delivering the very best wheat in the most sustainable way. Not to mention, sourcing our hero ingredient so close to home cuts down on our own food miles.”
Weetabix is also offering a free breakfast for 100 persons who sign up as a ‘resident’ and support the campaign.
This activity comes hot on the heels of a brand refresh for the iconic cereal, who have updated their packaging to hero and profile their famers on pack. The new-look pack also includes a Bix-shaped QR code that links to a dedicated traceability website featuring an interactive map of that all-important 50-mile radius, allowing shoppers to explore the farms within the Weetabix Growers Group and learn more about the farmers and modern farming practices at their helm. This includes environmental initiatives such as regenerative agriculture, renewable energy and the reduction of greenhouse gases.