Meet Adam and Polly
The co-founders of Wilding Snacks, an independent start-up business who create delicious and nutritious foods using forgotten ingredients. Passionate about food, their snacks are handmade in a small but perfectly formed Duck Crackling factory in the Wiltshire countryside.
Chef, Entrepreneur and Founder, Adam Wilding, launched Wilding’s in early 2014 and started trading in late 2016. Previously, Adam was based in London for 10 years working on high profile events and running various food led pubs. Adam left London, returning home to Berkshire to pursue new food projects, including supper clubs, private catering events and ultimately meat snack development.
Co-Founder (and Adam's Fiancée) Polly Jones joined Wilding's in 2018. Polly is a User Centred Designer and has previously led design teams on digital services at the Environment Agency in Bristol.
The Original Idea
The original idea of Duck Crackling came to Adam during a high profile event in London. He used Duck Crackling for the base of a duck rillettes with black cherry canapé dish. The canapés were a huge success making Adam think, why isn’t Duck Crackling an every day snack? The idea became so firmly planted in Adam's head, he decided to leave London and pursue it.
The high fat content in duck skin makes it notoriously difficult to remain crispy, however with a team of scientists in his network (Adam’s mother is a physicist and stepfather a microbiologist) he was able to create and perfect Wilding’s trade secret recipe.
When starting out in his small development kitchen (a friends converted Summer house), Adam used a triple cook method to make the process work. It took time but eventually Adam and his team ‘cracked’ it. To make the idea viable, Adam now had to find a way to reproduce the process at SCALE.
Taking a brand new product to market is always a challenge. Adam initially planned for the cooking and co-packing of his snacks to be contracted out. However, having a tricky recipe and fragile product made the idea quite difficult. Not deterred, Adam took a huge leap, bringing all the manufacturing in house.
Adam spent the first few years in business scaling up DCHQ. The work included the installation of a complex oil filtration system, engineered by Adam’s father. This has resulted in Wilding’s being able to manufacture thousands of litres of kettle rendered pure duck fat. All waste oil is captured and sent off for biofuel.
Wilding’s hard work has resulted in a fully equipped, SALSA accredited, allergen free kitchen. It is complete with purpose built machinery, bespoke tools and a packing facility. The adjoining unit is Wilding’s warehouse and distribution point, office and staff area.
Innovative, challenger brand
Wilding’s haven’t reinvented, they’ve innovated a traditional snack by creating two completely unique and nutritious crackling products.
Wilding's believe real food tastes better. Their snacks are nutrient dense, 100% natural, and use few ingredients. Cooking in 'good fats' means they have a rich, delicious flavour, with a light crackle rather than a hard crunch. Perfect for Paleo, Ketogenic, Carnivore or low-carb high-fat lifestyles.
Wilding’s believe in nose to tail eating and as any good chef knows, food waste in kitchens is a sin. This value was placed firmly at the centre of Adam’s vision at the beginning of his Duck Crackling journey.
To date, Wilding’s have rescued around 100 tons of a top quality ingredient that is used in Michelin Star kitchens, to create their deliciously different snacks.