£0.5m boost for local food in East of England

LOCAL AND regional producers stand to gain an extra £500,000 following the East of England Showground’s decision to buy all food sold on the site direct from the farm.


All fresh produce consumed by the 800,000 annual visitors to the Peterborough showground now comes from 30 local or regional suppliers, ranging from Grimston Fen Farm burgers and Grasmere Farm bacon to Mr Pitchfork’s pickles and Yorkshire Dales icecream.


Sales are set to double this year and break the £1m barrier thanks to new buildings and a good response to the local sourcing policy.


It is called Food Direct from the Farm and there are already plans to expand it, according to Andrew Mercer, chief executive of the East of England Agricultural Society.


“Non-farmer caterers are now obliged to purchase their basic product lines, including burgers, sausages and bacon, from the Society.


“Local suppliers are benefiting, and in return we are getting quality and consistency of supply at competitive prices.”

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