Producer Case Study: Bath Soft Cheese

Welcome to the latest TOB Producer Case Study! In this series you can get to know members of our TOB family of producers a little better, and find out how working with us has made a difference. Don’t forget, every order you place helps the 35 independent producers that supply us – thank you for supporting small business!

Meet the Producer

Bath Soft Cheese have been with TOB right from the start, as one of our original 13 producers back in 2015! The fact their products are still one of our biggest bestsellers just goes to show how incredible they are at making cheese…

The Padfield family have been happily milking a herd of cows at Park Farm for four generations, since Edward Ernest Padfield took on the farm in 1914 – he and his wife had a small herd of Shorthorn cows and made cheddar cheese. Although the next generation didn’t carry on the cheesemaking tradition, in 1990, when Graham Padfield decided to start making cheese again, he was able to do so in the very same buildings in which his grandmother had made her Cheddar nearly 80 years before. He even revived the original recipe for Bath Soft Cheese itself, a well-known local favourite in the 18th and 19th centuries.  Although times and methods change, the cheese is still made on the farm, less than 50 yards away from where the cows are milked!

Welcome to the family

When TOB managing director Helen was looking for producers to supply the very first hampers, she knew Bath Soft Cheese had to be in there – multi-award-winning, incredibly delicious, with an incredible foundation in local history and foodie culture, what more could we need?

Helen says… “Growing up in Bath, I always considered Bath Soft Cheese an essential for any cheeseboard, so oozy and scrumptious! I got to know the Bath Soft Cheese team on a professional footing when I was trading with my former pate business at Bath Farmers’s Market 2013-15, and Hugh Padfield & I even went to Westminster a couple of times with other traders to showcase Bath produce to the MPs. When I launched Taste of Bath in 2015, I knew Bath Soft Cheese just had to be a part of it – they’re a Bath institution!”

No ordinary supplier relationship

At Taste of Bath we’re incredibly proud of our producers and do everything we can to help them grow and thrive. Having a regular commitment to supply us gives each producer regular income to depend on, which is a huge advantage when you run a small business supplying perishable products. 

As Bath Soft Cheese themselves have said, “Working with Taste of Bath has allowed us as small producers to flourish in areas we don’t have the access to or enough expertise to operate in ourselves as the amazing team champions our products. They have helped keep us going through hard times and have helped make the good times great!”

The sky’s the limit

Running an independent business can be pretty tough, but at TOB we believe artisan businesses are a crucial part of what makes Bath so special – and that’s why we champion them. For Bath Soft Cheese, one of the biggest challenges is finding and training the right recruits, but it’s all worth it to nurture new cheesemakers as they develop all the skills they need and make their own dream cheeses a reality! Now that the industry is emerging from a tough couple of years, Bath Soft Cheese are excited to introduce some fabulous new products including Truffled Bath Soft Cheese (um, yes please!) and Smoked Mozzarella.

Whatever trials and triumphs are next, these local legends will be up to the challenge, and we’ll be right there to support them!

Business customer? You can find out more about how your orders help to support our independent producers, and all the other Corporate Social Responsibility benefits to ordering from Taste of Bath, on our dedicated page here!

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