H. P. Bulmer


H. P. Bulmer

H.P. Bulmer, otherwise known as Bulmers Cider, was founded in 1887 in Hereford, England by Percy Bulmer, the 20 year old son of the local rector at Credenhill, taking his mother's advice to make a career in food or drink, "because neither ever go out of fashion". [cite web | url= http://www.smr.herefordshire.gov.uk/agriculture%20_industry/cider_bulmers.htm | work= Herefordshire County Council | title= Bulmers – How It All Began | accessdate= 2007-09-29]

History

Using apples from the orchard at his father's rectory and an old stone press on the farm next door, Percy made the first cider, upon which the family fortune would be made. Today HP Bulmer makes 65% of the five million hectolitres of cider sold annually in the United Kingdom and the bulk of the UK's cider exports.fact|date=December 2007

His elder brother Fred, coming down from Kings College, Cambridge, turned down the offer of a post as tutor to the children of the King of Siam to join Percy in his fledgling cider business.

With a £1,000 loan from their father, the brothers bought an convert|8|acre|ha|1 field just outside the city and built their first cider mill. It was little more than a shack compared to the huge modern stainless-steel computer-controlled cider-making plant that has grown up on a convert|75|acre|ha|1 site nearby.

Cider making in those early days was a hit or miss affair, the fermentation being achieved by the wild yeast in the apple, and more often than not the cider turned sour. It was a college friend of Fred's, Dr. Herbert Durham, who, in the 1890s, isolated the wild yeast to create the first pure cider yeast culture, which would ensure that fermentations were consistent. This was the start of commercial cider making.

Bulmers was first granted the Royal Warrant in 1911 and continues today as 'Cider Maker to Her Majesty the Queen'.

Recent developments

The company was independent until 2003, when, having run into financial problems, it was taken over by brewing giant Scottish and Newcastle, which in turn was taken over by Heineken and Carlsberg in 2008. Its Australia and New Zealand business, meanwhile, was sold to Australian brewer Foster's.

During the spring of 2006, the company relaunched Bulmers Original in the UK, a premium packaged cider aimed at the "served over ice" market, which has grown in popularity over the last few years. Bulmers Original is a 4.5% ABV cider and is primarily sold in pint bottles (568 ml) but also on draught, in 1 litre bottles and 500ml can. In November 2007 the Bulmers range was joined by Bulmers Pear cider and in Spring 2008 by Bulmers Light, which is the same ABV as the Original but with 30% less calories.

Amongst the other brands produced by Bulmers is Jacques which is a 5.5% ABV cider made in Belgium by Stassen SA. This is available in Fruit De Bois (cider with cherry, raspberry and blackcurrant flavours) and Jacques Orchard Fruits launched in Summer 2008.

Brands

* Bulmers Original
* Bulmers Pear
* Bulmers Light
* Strongbow
* Scrumpy Jack
* Woodpecker Cider
* Jacques from Strongbow
* Strongbow Sirrus
* Pomagne

References

* [http://www.bulmer.com Bulmers official company website]
* [http://www.bulmers.co.uk/index.html Bulmers website for Bulmers Original, Pear and Light]
* [http://www.strongbow.com Strongbow Website]
* [http://www.jacquescider.co.uk Jacques Website]

External links

* [http://www.bulmers.co.uk/hpbulmers/ Bulmers official company website]
* [http://www.bulmers.co.uk/bulmerscider/ Bulmers website for Bulmers Original, Pear and Light]
* [http://www.strongbow.com Strongbow Website]
* [http://www.jacquescider.co.uk Jacques Website]


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