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Watercress Lane duck eggs are ship-shape for P&O Cruises

Duck eggs will be on the menus of some of the most luxurious passenger ships in the world after Watercress Lane won a contract with high quality food and deli wholesaler Kentas of London to supply Britain’s leading cruise line.

The Norfolk-based food producer will provide tasty duck eggs for globe-trotting passengers to enjoy on board the P&O Cruise Line’s fleet of spectacular ships, including the Arcadia – well-known for the Arcadian Rhodes Restaurant created by celebrity chef Gary Rhodes – and the Artemis.

Watercress Lane got the nod for the prestigious contract because of its respected ‘Blue Duck’ quality mark which guarantees full traceability for its eggs and an assurance that they are produced to consistently high standards of freshness, food safety and animal welfare.

Already renowned for supplying superior duck eggs to the consumer market, the Norwich company also supplies more than 350 top London restaurants and gastro-pubs via Secretts Direct, the fruit and veg supplier run by Vernon Mascarenhas and part owned by Gregg Wallace of Masterchef fame.

Now holidaymakers enjoying the best dining afloat, on board P&O’s fantastic liners cruising the most exotic locations in the world, can enhance their experience by tucking into dishes featuring Watercress Lane’s delicious and healthy duck eggs.

The deal for P&O Cruises through Kentas of London, who supply 2,000 quality lines to a variety of food sectors, reflects a growing interest in duck eggs as an alternative to the everyday hen egg and endorses the capability of Watercress Lane to provide duck eggs of a consistent quality and freshness throughout the year.

Kentas of London managing director Joe McGinty said: “Duck eggs were already on the menu for passengers on P&O’s Cruises but the original supplier got into difficulties and was unable to guarantee supply. We were recommended Watercress Lane because of its ‘Blue Duck’ guarantee of exceptionally high standards, a key requirement of P&O, and because they have the capability to provide duck eggs of a consistent quality and freshness throughout the year.”

Each P&O Cruise ship will have two cases containing 20 dozen of Watercress Lane’s duck eggs. They are ideal for cooking and baking, serving with dishes such as black pudding and scallops, and can, of course, be used as part of a traditional breakfast option.

Watercress Lane produces over seven and a half million duck eggs each year under its ‘Blue Duck’ brand and now holidaymakers, as well as diners in some of London’s smartest restaurants, are joining the increasing number of people turning to these fresh, natural and delicious eggs.

Watercress Lane duck eggs are produced by the Burwell Hatchery near Norwich in Norfolk. The company breeds and farms Pekin Ducks (a special strain) for egg production and employs 27 qualified staff. The Burwell Hatchery currently manages 28,000 birds producing over 12,000 dozen eggs per week.

The Watercress Lane ducks are barn kept and managed in accordance with the RSPCA’s Freedom Food code of conduct for hatcheries. The ducks are fed a specially balanced diet which provides just the right amount of vitamins to ensure a full and consistent flavour and all birds are vaccinated against salmonella at 14 and 18 weeks

Duck eggs are a gourmet product. They are larger than hen eggs with a richer flavour and the higher proportion of yolk to white makes them especially useful in baking. Duck eggs are also packed with vitamins and minerals, and provide a powerful protein boost, approximately 15% of the adult recommended daily allowance.

Watercress Lane duck eggs are natural, unbleached and unsalted. Eggs laid overnight are collected before 9am and are shipped the following day after washing and drying. Collection is manual and all eggs are hand inspected, candled and graded prior to delivery.

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