G'day! I'm Alison Meagher, professionally known as Butcher Girl Alison and I've been a qualified butcher for nearly 20 years, working around the world to passionately promote the craft of butchery and quality, sustainable meat.
The Butcher Girl Alison brand has been built on over a decades worth of global industry experience, and a lifetime of being around cattle and beef production. Growing up on regional Victoria beef farm sealed my passion for meat from a young age, and a creative love for all food and cooking meant eventually those two worlds had to collide.
I’ve been involved in the industry for nearly 20 years, and it all began with my Bachelor of Applied Science (Food Styling) from RMIT University Melbourne and starting a career in being a home economist with food styling and recipe creation for magazines and trade shows before social media was even a thing!
This work lead to some awesome opportunities including a year long internship in the US, where meat is a serious business. Working with meat suppliers and styling butcher displays in the States sparked my interest in going beyond the preparation and presentation of food, and wanting to learn the magical art of the butchery behind it all.
It was in the US where I got the travel bug, and set off into the world to get some real hands on food styling experience under my belt. And where better to do that, than London?
If you're wondering how to pronounce Meagher, don't worry, you're not alone!
The answer to this Frequently Asked Question is: 'Ma', like you were about to say mama, or marmalade. Easy as!
Why not! Like most good Australian's the opportunity to travel overseas to London was something I couldn't ignore, especially when I had landed a position at the crème de la crème of butchers - the world famous Lidgates.
It was while in London working for this 150 year-old traditional butcher shop that I developed a passion for butchery. Every day I watched the butchers work and create, interact and educate their customers, and thrive in their traditional environment. I grew more and more eager, and fascinated by the art of butchery as time went on, and all in an award winning shop in Holland Park, that had big reputation and a high bar set amongst it's discerning, well to do clientele.
The display of meat and presentation was something special. Spectacular. I soaked in the learning experience and passion of this amazing team and just knew that this is what I wanted to do.
Returning to Australia was always on the agenda, and I did so with the goal in mind to become a butcher. I didn't waste any time in applying for a course, and completed my Certificate III in Meat Processing (Retail Butcher) through William Angliss Institute, one of the leading specialists training centres in Australia for butchery.
After continuing my new trade the Aussie way in a hip Melbourne butchers and honing my skills, I then moved to Shanghai, China for six years to become the Promotions and Training Manager for Australian Beef in Asia. What an absolute blast and an incredible experience to educate and engage consumers on Australian meat and its unique cuts. I took pride in showcasing the story behind the meat, where it came from, and what made Australian beef special. From preparing primary and secondary cuts to presenting the meat, I loved elevating the Aussie meat brands.
Connecting with some of Australia’s finest beef and lamb brands, I had the opportunity to train and consult clients across the Southeast Asia region. My work took me to countries such as Indonesia, Cambodia, Vietnam, Singapore, and Thailand, where I provided a range of services from showcasing butchery and cooking to in depth training for chefs and meat specialists. It was here I began to carve out a career of education and consultancy, highlighting the quality and versatility of Australian beef and lamb cuts and the foundations for Butcher Girl Alison were laid.
I returned to Australia in 2019, and it was here back home in Victoria where Butcher Girl Alison was truly born. My mission is to educate, consult and train not just butchers, but consumers, industry specialists and everyone in between on all things meat, with a big emphasis on secondary cuts, revenue maximization and waste reduction.
Adding online and real life training to my bow, I've upped my presentation and education game by completing Certificate IV in Training and Assessment / Industry Presenter for any extra touch of experience in media opportunities, as well as getting involved in business development projects both for the Government and private clients.
My laid back Aussie persona and eagerness to assist others in overcoming the obstacles of the meat industry have driven me to expand Butcher Girl Alison beyond just myself. Now I've got an awesome team consisting of exceptional individuals who embody the BGA ethos and wholeheartedly support me in all aspects of my work.
My next goal is to revive the art of butchery and bring it back to the world! I want to encourage more women to join this amazing industry and promote the idea of nose to tail eating while highlighting the value of long forgotten secondary cuts. It's all about a sustainable, zero waste future!
Need some butcher help? No worries! No project is too big or too small. Give me a shout and find out what I can do for you.