FAQs

Our amazing crew at Clive’s is headed up by husband and wife team Sally and Chris Carson, who own and run the business. Joint Managing Director Esther Pearson also has a small slice of the (pie) business and deals with all the day-to-day management of making and selling our scrumptious pies. Bernie heads up the bakery and Beatus our kitchen, Claire oversees all things production and looks after all the great people making sure every Clive’s pie is as delicious as the next.

A moment of spiritual enlightenment in the 1970s transformed a Devonshire man called Clive from ordinary bloke to animal loving plant pie-oneer. Vouching to do right by all living creatures, he dedicated himself to making amazing pies purely from plants.

Now that he’s retired, Clive’s is no longer one person, but all of us, proud to share his original vision and can-do attitude. Read more about our story.

Clive’s can be found in the fridge or freezer in most good health food shops, also nationally in Waitrose, Morrisons and Holland & Barrett or if you prefer home delivery try Ocado, Abel & Cole, Vegankind and many others.

Try our pie finder for your local retailers.

Being totally organic is an essential part of our history and values. Organic means that we support farming methods that don’t use pesticides, fertilisers, GMOs or any chemicals. Organic ingredients might be 20% more expensive and harder to source, but we believe it’s worth the effort. We champion clean ingredients that are better for you and the planet, oh and they taste better too!

We lovingly prepare our pies to the same size and standard every time however, as a handmade product, there is often some variation. We pack our pies full of fresh Riverford Organic veggies and pulses from growers like Hodmedods, being organic means ingredients can be a bit smaller, larger, darker or lighter than the batch before. We never use ingredients that we wouldn’t serve to our own friends and families at home and think it’s only right to love veg in all its natural glory

All Clive’s food comes in a completely compostable cardboard outer sleeve or box. Many products come with no inner packaging at all, like our wholemeal pies and nut roast which are robust enough to cope with the journey to you. Other pies, like our gluten free range, need the support of a little recyclable foil to help keep them in shape. Our tarts are completely handmade, so we make these in little paper cases which you can recycle with your paper or compost. At the moment, our houmous pot is recyclable and we are working on making it plastic free too. We’re talking to lots of suppliers and are hopeful the technology will improve soon so that we can have a food grade and tamper seal pot that’s plastic free.

A few of our customers have been worried in the past about the health impacts of using aluminum foils. Our aluminum foil meets the required standards for chemical composition of semi-products used for the fabrication of containers for use in contact with food. What does that all mean? It means we fully comply with European Standard EN602:2004. We did try a few trial runs of using paper alternatives but sadly we ended up with too many broken pies. If you have a great idea on how we could replace foil in the future though, get in touch. – we’re all ears!

Cold – yes, you sure can! All our products are cooked and ready to eat.

Defrosted cold – yes absolutely! Although there is a bit more moisture as a result of the freezing process, so you may want to heat it up as per the instructions on the pack.

Defrosted and left chilled – yes, as long the frozen date hasn’t been exceeded and its kept below 5 degrees then its fine for 3 days.

Microwaved – hmmm never the best idea for pastry products, we understand sometimes needs must but for best results we’d always recommend popping it in the oven if you can.

Every Clive’s product comes with a delicious serving suggestion on the pack and you can also check out our social channels for more tips and ideas. Our pies, tarts and nut roast are seriously yummy all on their own and make the perfect addition to any plate of food. We’ve seen and eaten every combo with our Clive’s hot and cold. From comforting roasted veg to a fresh green salad, literally anything goes. All our pies have their own sauciness, so you can decide to add your own gravy or other sauces as you wish.

At Clive’s, we manufacture to a high standard of food safety and organic status. These are both externally audited annually and verified by SALSA and the Soil Association respectively. We also work with our local trading standards and environmental health officers who inspect our business and also provide commissioned advice as and when required.

The allergens we have on the premises are; Tree nuts (brazils, almonds, walnuts), Soy (tamari, okara and soy blend), Sesame (tahini), Cereals containing Gluten (wholemeal flour, breadcrumbs), mustard and celery.

Our packaging very clearly shows when the product ‘contains’ an allergen – we do this by highlighting the relevant ingredient in bold and capitals. You can also find all our allergen information on the website.

We take lots of steps to reduce the likelihood of cross contamination. We have complete separation and/or time separation, different equipment, colour coded PPE and controls through hygiene procedures, for example using dedicated and colour coded cleaning equipment.

We carry out thorough risk assessments of all our manufacturing processes on-site to determine the possibility of allergens in our food. We also review all our supplier product declarations and ask them to complete a risk assessment based on the same model. Even if the risk is remote, we do sometimes decide to include a ‘may contain’ declaration if the allergen is particularly hard to manage or the reaction to it is more prevalent or severe. Please read on for specific information about our ‘may contain’ declarations for the most common allergens. All our statements comply with Food Safety Authority guidelines.

Where a product does not ‘contain’:

Nuts – we will have a ‘may contain’ declaration on all packaging due to the presence of nuts in our bakery and in our supply chain. Although these risks are carefully managed and the likelihood of contamination ‘remote’ we have voluntarily made this declaration due to nature of the allergen (small particles or dust) and the prevalence and potential severity of reaction.

Sesame – we will have a ‘may contain’ declaration on all packaging due to the presence of sesame (tahini) in our bakery and in our supply chain. Although these risks are carefully managed and the likelihood of contamination ‘remote’ we have voluntarily made this declaration due to nature of the allergen (small particles, splash or dust) and the prevalence and potential severity of reaction.

Soy – we will have a ‘may contain’ declaration on all packaging due to the presence of soy in our bakery and in our supply chain. Although these risks are carefully managed and the likelihood of contamination ‘remote’ we have voluntarily made this declaration due to the prevalence of soy in our bakery and by its nature is ‘splashy’.

Mustard – we will have a ‘may contain’ declaration on all packaging due to the presence of mustard in our bakery and in our supply chain. Although these risks are carefully managed and the likelihood of contamination ‘remote’ we have voluntarily made this declaration due to the prevalence of mustard in our bakery and by is nature as ‘small particles’.

We will not make a ‘may contain’ declaration for the following allergens. This does not mean that cross contamination could never happen, it just means it is unlikely:

Peanuts – these are not in our bakery and we have strict controls in place. Peanuts are in our supply chain, but are carefully controlled and we are assured that the likelihood of cross contamination is remote.

Celery – this is in only one of our products, which is time-segregated, and hygiene controls manage the risk sufficiently. The allergen is also easy to see and is unlikely to be distributed (no dust for example).

Cereals containing Gluten – we have managed complete separation of cereals containing gluten for nearly 20 years, we test our gluten free products regularly for traces of gluten and verify our hygiene controls through swab testing. We have never had a result showing gluten. There are some risks of gluten cross contamination in our supply chain, but we work to minimise these and our testing regime confirms the reliability of our suppliers in this regard.

Sulphites, crustaceans, mollusks, fish, eggs and lupin have very little presence in our supply chain, are all risk assessed as remote and are not present in our bakery.

We hope that this information is useful to all our customers. We are very happy to talk to you or provide further information. Please do get in touch.

At Clive’s we are deeply concerned about any negative impacts to the environment through the ingredients we source. One of the most hotly debated here at Clive’s is our use of palm oil.

Over the last couple of years, we have worked with a number of food specialists to develop a special fat to use in our pastry. The challenge is, to make pastry we need a fat that can be grated and added to the flour and water to be mixed. This means it needs to be hard at room temperature, so eliminates many oils, e.g. sunflower, olive, etc. Some food manufacturers will use a hydrogenated fat (which has undergone a chemical process to make it hard/spreadable at room temperature), but these are well documented as bad fats. Some food manufacturers will use animal fats, e.g. lard, but we make vegan pies! Therefore, the only options available to us are palm, avocado or coconut.

Most alternatives aren’t as productive per acre as palm, so more land is needed to produce the same quantities. We are also mindful that rising demand for coconut and avocado oil will face the same issues that palm faces through clearing land, and therefore habitats, for production. The New Scientist reports…”while palm oil has acquired a reputation as a villain, the plant itself, called oil palm, is something of a hero. It is up to nine times as productive per hectare as other sources of vegetable oils such as rapeseed (canola) and soybeans, meaning it requires less land.”

We continue to use palm until we can find an alternative that is as high yielding, sustainably managed, organic and traceable. There are different grades of organic palm oil (as defined by the RSPO), and ours is the highest level achievable, that is, Identity Preserved, which means it can be traced back to the farm where it is actually grown.

We source our palm oil from Colombia due to their commitment to sustainable production. This is supported by the country signing a zero-deforestation commitment in order to distance itself from the environmental problems occurring in Southeast Asia.

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