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The families behind your favorite food and drink

Do you eat to live or live to eat? For those fond of the finer things in life – from a sparkling glass of Champagne to a creamy clotted cream – CNBC’s Lasting Legacy takes a look at family firms who have been producing world-class food and drink for decades.


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France’s world famous Champagne region is synonymous with the sparkling wine produced in its vineyards, and the family owned Billecart-Salmon house has been around since 1818.

Today, sixth-generation Francois and Antoine Roland-Billecart are at the helm of the business.

Billecart-Salmon’s 1959 vintage was voted “Champagne of the Millennium” by a panel of experts after a blind tasting, with the 1961 vintage coming in second place.

D.G. Yuengling & Son

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The “oldest brewery in America”, D. G. Yuengling & Son traces its roots to 1829, when David G. Yuengling founded the Eagle Brewery in Pottsvile, Pennsylvania.

The business has been family owned and operated ever since, with fifth generation Dick Yuengling Jr. now in the role of president and owner.

His four daughters also work full-time for the brewery, which now operates breweries in Pennsylvania and Florida.

Adaptability has been key to the business throughout its history: during the prohibition era, it switched to producing “near-beer” products and also built a dairy and began making ice cream.

A.E. Rodda & Son

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The Rodda family has been producing Cornish clotted cream since 1890, when Eliza Jane and Thomas Rodda began making it in their Cornwall, England home.

Today, Managing Director Nicholas Rodda represents the fifth generation of his family to be involved in the business, which now produces everything from Cornish clotted cream to butter and creme fraiche.

Clotted cream – a vital part of any English cream tea with scones and jam – is made by scooping the “clots” of cream off the surface of heated full-fat milk.

The company’s clotted cream has gone on to be enjoyed around the world, and was used at the wedding breakfast of Charles and Diana in 1981.



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