GROW YOUR PROFIT April/May 2017
NATIONAL VS LOCAL Retailers on making that core product selection
SHOULD YOU REBRAND? Thompson Brand Partners share Keelhamâ€™s success story
ADDING VALUE WITH... An ice cream parlour
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SUMMER DRINKS SPECIAL Six pages of what to buy and how to sell it 11/04/2017 13:10
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of home tea & coffee occasions. Fantastic impulse gifting opportunity
Welcome... ...to the first issue of Farm & Deli Retail, your new magazine bringing you the latest industry news, product updates and best retail practice to maximise your business. We’ve spent the past few months getting out and about, chatting to farm shops and delis, attending events and hearing from suppliers about what you feel defines your industry. We want to know what’s important to you and what challenges you feel lie ahead. Brexit is a topic on everyone’s minds at the moment – however you voted in the referendum, the triggering of Article 50 is now a reality that we all have to prepare for. In this issue, we’ve heard from National Farmers Union chairman Meurig Raymond on how Brexit has affected the farming sector thus far, and the chain reaction this will have on the farm shop and deli industry. Head of innovation at Foresight Factory Joshua McBain explains the changes that leaving the EU will hold for Britain’s consumers and retailers, and advises on how to Brexit-proof your business. You’ll also find advise on how to communicate Brexit-related price hikes to your customers, all from page 26. With summer just around the corner, we’re taking an in-depth look at the emerging group of consumers seeking premium adult soft drinks. We’ve selected
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products that capitalise on this market and you can find tips on how to sell them on page 41. We’re also looking into the appeal of craft mixers with Paul Bendit, owner of Folkington’s, as the trend follows on the tail of the booming craft spirits market in the UK that saw gin sales alone up 13% last year. With British consumers more willing than ever to spend a bit extra on high quality spirits, Paul says demand is high for complementary mixers that contribute to the premium drinking experience. We at FDR can’t wait to attend the Farm Shop & Deli Awards this month, and wish the best of luck to all of this year’s entries. We’ve been amazed at the level of hard work and dedication that goes into the award applications, and from page 34 you’ll find exclusive interviews with three of the judges on what they’ll be looking for when determining the 2017 winners. We’d love to hear your feedback on our first issue, as well as any suggestions on what you’d like to see from us in the future. Have a great read, see you in June.
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Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
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NEWS Our roundup of industry news
AGENDA Should farm shops and delis only stock local produce?
26 32 34
SHOULD YOU REBRAND YOUR BUSINESS? We speak to a creative agency about the positive eﬀect a rebrand can initiate
BUILDING A WINNING DISPLAY Jody Padgham gives pointers on displaying your products to increase sales
BREXIT-PROOF YOUR BUSINESS What to expect from Brexit, and how to prepare for a future outside the EU
ADDING VALUE: ICE CREAM How to go about diversifying your business with an ice cream parlour
FARM SHOP & DELI AWARDS Ahead of this year's awards, three of the judges tell us what it takes to make a winner
11 13 14 16 17 19
THE WHOLE FOOD CROSSOVER Jo Blythman shows how to turn the clean eating trend to your advantage
GETTING SOCIAL MEDIA RIGHT Tips on how to build your social media presence from Pete Doyle
ADD FLAVOUR TO THE SUMMER BARBECUE We select the best of new barbecue sauces hitting the shelves
BROADEN YOUR RANGE OF... DRESSINGS Our pick of the latest crop of dressings to arrive on the market
TOP FARMERS' MARKETS: SOUTH WEST A selection of the best farmers' markets across South West England
MEET THE PRODUCER Cornish Cheese Co
Beth Edwards on the food trends we can expect to see in 2017
FRESH MEAT We talk to meat industry insiders about the butchery skills gap and how they're closing it
MAXIMISING SUMMER SALES A selection of fine food retailers tell us their summer marketing secrets
MICHAEL DART, DARTS FARM FDR speaks to Michael Dart about the diverse, award-winning oﬀering of Darts Farm in Exeter
SUMMER DRINKS SPECIAL A roundup of the hottest new soft drinks, including alcohol alternatives and craft mixers
11 Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
NEWS OPINION NEWS
BEST FOOD RETAILER FINALISTS ANNOUNCED
LESS IMPORTED VEGETABLES SEE RIVERFORD’S SALES RISE
The Organic Farm Shop
Unicorn Grocery Co-op
THE BBC FOOD & FARMING AWARDS were launched in 2000 to honour those who have done most to promote the cause of good food. The judges have narrowed down the Food Retailer Awards entries from 528 to three, and will be announcing the winners on 8 June at a ceremony in Bristol. Unicorn Grocery Co-op This whole foods grocery, located in Chorlton, Manchester, was founded in 1996 as a workers’ co-operative. Debbie Clarke, co-op member, said: “We are so excited to be in the running for this award. We’re especially proud to be showing what can be achieved as a workers’ co-operative. We’re over the moon that 6
our customers have put us forward; the loyalty and support we get from our community is amazing.” The Organic Farm Shop Starting with a small shop and café in 1999, owner Hilary Chester-Master now employs over 30 staff. The shop, based in Cirencester, aims to grow local food for local people with an ethical, sustainable business model and minimum waste. Also generating their own energy and heating, one third of its profits go back to the staff each quarter. “Quite a few of our customers do their full weekly shop here,” says Hilary. “They say they spend less than in supermarkets, there is less choice and they waste nothing.”
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
Lavenham Butchers A small family-run butchers based in Lavenham, Suffolk, with a focus on knowing the provenance of their products. They have three qualified deer stalkers and butchers, and shoot their own wild venison, commenting: “We feel we are protecting the flora and fauna with our ethos of ‘field to fork’ seasonal and ethical eating.” The two families that run Lavenham Butchers, the Strolenbergs and the Dohertys, put their success down to passionate, loyal customers, hardworking staff and hard graft: “It’s all about knowing the provenance of your stock, believing in good products and learning how to showcase them.”
PETERBOROUGH-BASED organic farm Riverford has seen a significant growth in sales in the first nine weeks of 2017. Sales of their vegetable boxes and other organic produce were up 7%, based on average year-on-year figures. The news follows a shortage of imported vegetables as countries in the Mediterranean face extreme weather conditions. Murcia, the hub of lettuce production in Spain, experienced floods and frost, leading to a restriction on iceberg lettuces in British supermarkets. The farm believes another cause for the growth is greater consumer interest in how food is produced, along with demand for organic food. In the face of a tight hold on imported vegetables, Riverford is encouraging people to try home-grown alternatives like kale, leek and cauliflower. Riverford’s David Simpson commented: “It’s great that we’re relearning the potential of great British veg, and embracing seasonal British winter crops. Right now our fields are brimming with wonderful cabbages, leeks, kale, swede and flavourful greenery.” As farmers, Riverford know how devastating bad weather can be, and are committed to supporting their growers and minimising waste by allowing more generous specifications for their crops. “We’re currently including undersized broccoli heads in our veg boxes, just giving customers more of them. Because we grow, source, pack and deliver our veg ourselves, we have the flexibility to widen our specifications,” says David.
DAVID TRUSCOTT JOINS COTSWOLD FAYRE AS HEAD OF BUYING INDEPENDENT RETAILER supplier Cotswold Fayre announced the appointment of David Truscott as the new head of buying in March. David has spent the last six years with Sandpiper CI, one of the largest companies in the Channel Islands, with the latter three years focusing on Sandpiper CI’s food division Cimandis before it was acquired by Bidvest. David says: “I’m thrilled to be a part of this energetic and market-leading business. Cotswold Fayre works so closely in partnership with its suppliers, showing such passion for each product and brand. It’s an incredibly exciting market to be a part of, with such huge potential for growth.” www.farmanddeliretail.com
Association news We talk to treasurer John Sinclair of FARMA What is FARMA doing to ensure it’s as beneficial as possible to its members?
What are the main challenges for the farm shop and deli market?
Obviously Brexit and the potential breakup of the union are challenges we all face, but I like to think of them as opportunities. If the industry can really focus on what it’s doing and do it well, I think Brexit could bring a lot of advantages for the sector – as imported European foods get more expensive, people will naturally turn towards local produce.
FARMA has always been about the network, and sharing information. When we started as a farm What’s currently shop, the support and happening at FARMA? openness of the members The last couple of was key to our success. years have been We’re looking at building about stabilising the events, and we’re trying organisation – getting it to build on our local onto a firm footing and business clubs, which in putting the finances in some areas we’ve already order, which has been had great success with really successful. Our – Yorkshire, for example, main aim has been to has formed a fantastic prepare the organisation What is happening with group. It’s a simple format. and get it ready for the FARMA awards? We get members within the coming years, and The council is currently the area together to we’ve tried to get as holding a review process discuss a certain topic, much feedback from our for the FARMA awards, like customer loyalty members as possible. as in previous years they schemes or HR issues, We’ve also put a lot were quite clunky and and great ideas come of work into our vision the judging process was from it. and our values, which criticised. We’ve listened We’re also working can often be forgotten to that feedback and on building stronger about in organisations. have decided to take a relationships with Currently we have around step back. We’re totally suppliers; associate 300 members. It’s a good redesigning the awards members and suppliers mix of well-established and getting something are a vital part of businesses, new ones together that’s going to be membership at FARMA. that may not even have fit for the coming years. We’re working hard to a farm shop or deli yet There probably won’t be ensure everyone knows but are looking to get any FARMA awards this the savings that FARMA started, and associates year because of that, but members can take and organisations that are we’ll be looking at coming 1 of. 24/03/2017 13:07back better in 2018. advantage close to theTFF_Narrow sector. Ad_0317_AW.pdf
Are you going? 24-26 April Farm Shop & Deli Show NEC Birmingham, Birmingham www.farmshopanddelishow.co.uk 3-4 May The Food and Drink Trade Show Three Counties Showground, Malvern www.thefoodanddrinktradeshow.co.uk 5-7 May BBC Good Food Show Harrogate International Centre, Harrogate www.bbcgoodfoodshow.com 22-24 May The London Wine Fair Olympia, London www.londonwinefair.com 23-24 May The Caffè Culture Show Olympia, London www.caffecultureshow.com 4-5 June Fantastic Food and Drink Show International Convention Centre, Sydney, Australia www.fantasticshow.com.au 8-9 June Free From Food Expo Fira Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain www.freefromfoodexpo.com 14-18 June Taste of London Regent’s Park, London london.tastefestivals.com
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Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
Sarah Bowyer Manager, Best of British Deli I’m a big fan of local produce, it’s a great seller and there’s always a good story behind locally sourced products, but I think it’s alright to look further afield, particularly when a certain product can’t be found in the area. I don’t see why a farm shop or deli shouldn’t have a good range just because some products can’t be sourced locally. I work with independent, small suppliers; as soon as a product starts being sold in a supermarket I won’t stock it any more, because I can’t compete with them. My produce is about 6570% locally sourced and I have great relationships with my suppliers – they come in from the street 8
to say “I’ve made this,” and I’ll always give it a go and see how it sells. I also work with Diversifying Food and have done since it started up. It’s one of my main suppliers; I can often advise on which local products I’ve found are doing well and they’ll start supplying it, which is really positive. In my shop, it’s mainly tourists who want to buy specifically local produce; they like to be able to say when they go home that they bought something local when they visited Bath. I think local customers are more concerned about having quality products than about where those products came from.
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
Local vs national produce: what’s the right balance?
I quite happily stock good local products, but when I need things that aren’t made locally I’ll go somewhere else in Britain for it
Chris Mills Owner, Upton Smokery
I happily stock good local products, but when I need things that aren’t made locally I’ll go somewhere else in Britain for it. I don’t stock anything from overseas, and my customers seem to be more concerned with the fact that my products are British-made, rather than specifically Bath-made. I really hope Brexit won’t have an impact on my business as I stock from small independents and start-up companies, rather than anything overseas. Products such as butter have definitely gone up in price, which is affecting the products that I bake on site, but only time will tell what the effects of Brexit will be on our industry.
Only stocking local produce is a bit polarising for a farm shop or deli. I think that limiting your offering to only local produce misses the point of good food, and if every farm shop or deli in one area only stocked local food then they’d all be selling exactly the same things. That doesn’t mean we don’t support local food, but I’m not persuaded by the localonly argument. There’s so much good food that comes from so many different parts of the world, so why would you want to exclude it from your shop? As a smokery business we provide the majority of what we sell, but we import about 20% of our stock from
overseas. We’re out on a limb and there needs to be a difference between us and the next shop in town, so we blaze our own trail with regards to product selection. I’m not averse to importing stock from the continent if it’s good quality, which is the most important thing at the end of the day. A local product isn’t necessarily better than one from further away. There is Brexit to consider, but while it has put the price of some of our raw materials up considerably, there’s no reason we should have a weak currency long term – especially as most of Europe cannot afford to have a strong currency. www.farmanddeliretail.com
Nicola Stokes Marketing and branding manager, Farndon Fields I don’t believe that it is sustainable for farm shops and delis to only stock local produce. The selection of locally produced products varies widely between different regions. The term local produce is interpreted in many ways and does not always reflect the best quality products produced in our regions. If you want to create a successful farm retail business, I believe that the core product selection should be unique to you as a farmer or producer, unique to your area and region, and as high quality as you can find. We love local, but we also love delicious wholesome food, regardless of where it comes from. www.farmanddeliretail.com
A factor that affects the amount of local products we stock is availability and reliability. Some small start-ups struggle to fulfil orders and even some established local producers fail to keep up with orders (and subsequently reduce sales) due to an inability to expand production. Of the products we sell, about 20% is homegrown and homemade at Farndon Fields, around 40% is from other local farms and producers, approximately 30% is produce from across Britain, and roughly 10% is sourced from Europe. We have seen prices increase as a result of Brexit, and expect to see more effects in the coming
I believe that the core product selection should be unique to you as a farmer or producer, unique to your area and region, and as high quality as you can find 12 months. If prices were to disproportionately increase for products made in the EU, we would consider sourcing that particular product elsewhere, or look for a similar quality replacement from within the UK.
Harry Davies Owner, The De Beauvoir Deli I understand the benefits of selling local produce, but it isn’t always practical or desirable from a consumer’s perspective. Depending on how you define local, a food business could really limit themselves in what they’re able to offer. As a central London business, we have to look beyond the immediate area for our fresh produce, and beyond the UK for staple items such as bananas, lemons and avocados (not to mention wine and coffee). While there are fantastic British versions of classic continental cheeses and cured meats, we source much of our produce from France, Italy and Spain for the best value.
When we can source locally and cost effectively, we do, and when we can make something ourselves, we do. While the ingredients may not be locally grown, our kitchen is responsible for an increasing range of items. Most of our fruit and veg is grown in the south-east, and most of our fresh produce is made in or around London. In terms of Brexit, it’s a level playing field for British businesses; no matter what the outcome is, we’re all in the same boat. Continental produce is already more expensive because of the fall in the pound – any future jumps in cost could make British cheese and charcuterie more competitive.
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
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The whole food crossover Brits today are keen to eat more healthily, says Joanna Blythman, and this is blurring the boundaries between whole food shops and gourmet retailers
hole food stores, delicatessens and farm shops used to inhabit quite distinct worlds, each focused on a separate constituency. Forgive the stereotyping, but whole food shops were seen as catering for hippies and vegans, establishments where stocking a wide range of dietary supplements and complementary health remedies mattered every bit as much as the food on offer. Delicatessens were labelled as posh shops catering for an affluent caste of shopper, generally ‘townies’ with rarified, often foreign, tastes. They got saddled with a reputation for expensive, elitist shopping, spawning cynical tales about thin slivers of artisan cheese costing twice as much as the supermarket lookalike. Farm shops appealed more to rural shoppers with traditional tastes, and day-trippers out for a country jaunt who wanted to take home a foodie memento or something prettily packaged to gift at a later point. Jams, chutneys and fudge were stalwarts here. Of course, the unique selling point of farm shops is the food that they grow and rear – meat, berries, dairy and so on. But they often thrash around trying to pin down supplementary products that encourage repeat visits from their customer base.
Blurred lines These boundaries, however, are breaking down. The farm shopper who arrives by car sees an opportunity to buy extra virgin olive oil along with the locally reared beef. Delis realise that anything they make or bake themselves – quiche, cakes, pies – drives footfall infinitely more than the boutique nut oils and amaretti biscuits that occupy shelf space while selling sluggishly. The fashion for ‘clean eating’, which has given whole food shops a rejuvenating shot in the arm, has shaken up the broader independent retail scene. People who never previously ventured into whole food shops now want to buy goji berries, chia seeds, sauerkraut and kefir. Products that whole food shops have quietly stocked for decades – nut butters, malt extract, raw cacao and the like – are now profitably on-trend.
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Products that whole food shops have quietly stocked for decades – nut butters, malt extract, raw cacao and the like – are now profitably on-trend
Supermarkets have half-heartedly responded, taking on ‘speciality’ lines such as pomegranate molasses and extra virgin coconut oil, but they get lost amongst their mainstream stock. Even the might of the ‘big four’ retailers can’t beat dynamic specialist food shops at their own game.
New opportunities ‘Clean eating’ has its critics, but it has triggered a significant shift in eating habits, which, I think, is here to stay. Health is now hitched to the fine food market, which means that the whole health food repertoire is ripe for cannibalisation by the deli and farm shop sector. Indeed, some of the most interesting and innovative British brands now position themselves at this intersection. Rude Health, with its range of granolas, mueslis and sprouted grains, is a case in point. They tick many boxes that matter to people: British, on the ball when it comes to nutrition, of sound provenance, and more interesting in taste terms than others on the market. Hodmedods, with its UK-grown quinoa, salted and dry roasted English Fava (broad) beans, ‘naked’ barley and more, is another brand that fits the deli just as snugly as the whole food store and the farm shop. Since the pound weakened after the Brexit vote, any deli or farm shop heavily reliant on food imports – cheese, charcuterie, oils and so on – has witnessed a scary price rise that they daren’t pass onto their customers. Perhaps a way to get round this bind is a subtle move towards whole food staples: more oatmeal, fewer olives; less Saint Marcellin and Serrano ham, more spelt and seaweed. Whole food stores, farm shops and delis have one important thing in common: they appeal to the independent shopper. The more they can learn from each other’s successes, the better.
Further information Joanna Blythman is a food journalist and author of Swallow This. Twitter @JoannaBlythman
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
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How to get social media right Digital marketing expert Pete Doyle’s no-nonsense approach to building a profitable social media presence
Social media is the most cost effective channel to connect with your customers in the local area you serve.
What are the platforms available? Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Instagram, in particular, is a fastgrowing platform for sharing pictures of unique food products and sharing the story behind their production.
What are the first steps?
I would begin with a basic Facebook page and an Instagram profile. Take your time to get familiar with how the platform works for businesses, as it’s slightly different to using it as an individual. Define your tone of voice and sign off each post with your first name to keep it looking personal. Search for other farm or deli shop profiles and garner ideas from them; look at which sorts of posts are shared and create engagement. Make sure your store opening hours are easily found, and write a brief description about what is unique about your store. Add your full address www.farmanddeliretail.com
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details, phone numbers and email address so that customers can contact you. You can send and receive messages via Facebook and Instagram too. Take your time, and don’t try to do everything in the first week. Get some friends who have experience of running commercial social media pages to assist you if necessary.
before you connect with them, as you need to protect your brand and reputation.
What if you have no previous experience?
What tone should you take?
Seek advice from friends or family, or look for a local social media trainer who can help you. It’s best that you do this as the owner of your business – don’t outsource it. Having conversations with your customers is key to the success of your business, and social media allows you to get real-time feedback from your customers while building long term relationships with them.
What about Twitter?
Unique to Twitter is the fact that local town names have hashtags, so you can reach out and follow your local community on Twitter simply by searching for local hashtags to bring up their accounts. Take care to look at people’s profiles
Any good apps to download?
Download the Facebook, Messenger, Instagram and Twitter apps for your smartphone; this will allow you to talk to your customers whenever and wherever you are.
Be consistent, polite and friendly across social media conversations, as if the person was face to face with you on the shop floor. That way the customer will receive a completely honest and consistent shopping experience from you. Don’t try to be any different to how you normally are in your shop.
Is it important to maintain relationships once they’re established? Very important. Keep your social media up to date and soon it will become an extension of your business, a bit like your shop phone or email. Over time you may find having conversations on Facebook or Instagram is easier than on the
phone, and you can have multiple conversations simultaneously on social media once you get the hang of it.
How often should you be updating?
Once or twice a week is ideal, providing you have something relevant to say. If you have more time, then once a day is better. But don’t just post anything – make it relevant and locally topical. You will get out of it what you put in. Enjoy it, and good luck!
DOS AND DON’TS
Why should fine food retailers embrace social media?
Be consistent, polite and friendly across social media conversations, as if the person was face to face with you on the shop floor
Do ‘think twice, tweet once’ – think about what you’re going to say before you reply to your customers, never rush into it, take your time. Do try and do a little bit each day, perhaps 10 minutes, so that your social media posts are up to date and relevant. Do focus on talking about your area of expertise. Don’t get embroiled in a conversation that has nothing to do with food retailers in your area. Stay on topic. Don’t try and automate everything – tell people when you’re online and let them talk to you with their queries. Encourage them to make an appointment with you, so you can plan your time efficiently and manage customer expectations.
Further information www.socialretailgroup.com
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
Plant power Beth Edwards, senior trends analyst at food agency thefoodpeople, talks us through the 2017 food forecast
hen we think about this year’s food trends, the first thing that springs to mind is the increasing popularity of vegetables and plantbased diets. Over the last few years we’ve seen a steady rise in the numbers of people choosing a plant-based way of life, whether that be as a vegetarian, a vegan or a ‘flexitarian’ (enjoying meat now and again, but largely cutting it out). People are getting more comfortable with preparing vegetables as they begin to reduce their red meat consumption for the health of their bodies and the planet. Plantbased substitutions, like courgetti for spaghetti and chickpea flour for wheat flour, are selling like hot cakes as we move vegetables into the centre of our dinner plate.
Today’s consumers are thirsty for vegan-friendly ‘mylks’, plant-based milk substitutes. Almond mylk is well established in the marketplace and remains popular, while coconut and cashew mylk show a huge growth potential. As well as nut mylks, rice, oat and soy continue to appeal to lactose-free consumers, or those who fancy a change 14
from traditional dairy. It seems that mylks are often enjoyed alongside dairy, suggesting that its consumption doesn’t replace traditional dairy milk – this plant-based addition is an extension of dairy consumption. Dairy alternatives to cow’s milk are also more widespread than ever before, as consumers demand a variety of choice often driven by allergen avoidance. The one we’re probably most familiar with is goat’s milk. In the UK, goat dairies Delamere and St Helen’s have their yoghurt and milk offerings on sale in supermarkets, while Waitrose has own-label goat’s milk on its shelves. Less well-known is camel milk. Although widely drunk across African and Asian countries, camel milk is still a novel proposition for most UK consumers – but its potential for promoting health is abundant. To begin with, it lacks the beta-casein and betalactoglobulin proteins found in cow’s milk, which are often the trigger for those with milk allergies. It also contains higher levels of both vitamin C and the proteins immunoglobulin and lactoferrin than cow’s milk, leading some to claim that it could help boost the immune system.
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
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As we go back to nature, botanicals are entering our food and drinks like never before. Rose is increasingly popular as a floral flavour in soft drinks, while sakura, or cherry blossom, is another popular botanical appearing in our food and drinks, offering a fresh and flowery blossom taste. Every spring Starbucks Japan launches its ‘Sakura’ range, with this year’s selection including Sakura Blossom Cream Latte and Sakura Blossom Cream Frappuccino. The popularity of floral cocktails is also booming as bartenders and mixologists start to infuse spirits with flowers and herbs. Gin lends itself particularly well to herbal and floral infusions, given its botanical make-up.
Floral cocktails are booming as bars and mixologists start to infuse their spirits with flowers and herbs. Gin lends itself particularly well to herb and floral infusions, given its botanical make-up
In addition to their increasing use for flavouring food and drink, flowers have been sprouting up as edible decorations – adding a touch of refinement to salads and smoothie bowls, and adorning our cakes, cocktails and juices. The vibrancy found in the floral world sits happily with the current taste for colourful food without the additives, offering a bright colour palette that’s free from chemicals and preservatives. Nasturtiums and microherbs are particularly popular, especially in fine dining and food service.
Further information www.thefoodpeople.co.uk
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BUTCHERS IN TRAINING
We spoke to Industry of Meat chairman Bill Jermey and managing director of butchery school Meat Ipswich Jane Dale about the current butchery skills gap, and the importance of encouraging younger generations to consider butchery as a worthwhile career option Why is there a skills gap? Bill believes a significant factor is the focus of schools: “The drive from schools to get youngsters into university has definitely been a challenge. However, most of the retail butchers today are very high quality, and are taking a real interest in getting young people into the business to be the leaders going forward.” According to Jane, just over 20 years ago there were 24,000 retail butcher shops in England, including national retail butchers like Dewhurst. The advent of large supermarkets was integral to the decline seen since then: “As the bigger supermarkets started to dominate the market, the recruitment of young people into butchery radically decreased, and trained butchers went into building and other industries,” Jane 16
Most of the retail butchers today are very high quality, and are taking a real interest in getting young people into the business to be the leaders going forward Bill Jeremy
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
explains. “The meat for the supermarket was prepared in meat processing plants and factories, and butchery counters in supermarkets had very little carcass meat – butchers weren’t needed, so they weren’t recruited and trained.” In the current political climate, Jane says it’s more important than ever to rectify the butchery skills gap. “If we don’t encourage young people to consider butchery, especially now with Brexit, then we will have the ‘plumber’ situation, where skilled butchers will be able to hold employers to ransom because there will be a shortage. Farm shops and delis to my knowledge have difficulty recruiting not only butchers, but all food workers. If butchery could be marketed as a career option with paths to management and technical jobs, it would
attract young people who have the practical potential and also the academic potential.” What’s being done? For several decades butchery was in decline, but the skills gap is starting to lessen, says Bill. “We’re getting a lot of youngsters involved in the trade now, and we’re pleased with the way young people are taking an interest in the meat industry. The first trainees for the new Trailblazer Butchery Apprenticeship scheme started in September 2015 and graduated this March, and while it’s too early to say whether they will all remain in butchery, I think a high proportion will. We’ve had 80 trainees so far, and we expect numbers to rise even higher from April and May
Farm shops and delis to my knowledge have diﬃculty recruiting not only butchers, but all food workers
as the Apprenticeship Levy starts.” Bill is doing all he can to spread the word about butchery apprenticeships, and the benefits of a career in butchery. “We try to reach potential trainees through trade bodies and trade press – we’ve visited a few schools but have found it difficult to engage them, as they still seem reluctant to promote anything that isn’t going to get their students into university.” Training for butchery can also be accessed through Meat Ipswich, which offers Level 2 and 3 butchery training, intermediate and advanced butchery apprenticeships, and bespoke butchery courses at its training centre. The centre trains 150 butchers each year. How to get involved Farm shops and delis looking to get involved and promote butchery to younger generations can do so in a variety of ways. “There are local training providers and the National Apprentice Service online, which can help those looking to take on apprentices,” says Bill. “The apprenticeships themselves can be advertised to customers within the shop, through social media, or by contacting local schools.” Farm shops and delis can promote the profession by offering schools and colleges taster events, suggests Jane. “Young people could make some sausages, discover career options and see what a career in the industry would actually feel like.”
Further information www.meatipswich.co.uk
SALES & MARKETING
ways to maximise summer sales (that work)
Five fine food retailers reveal their hottest tactics for increasing sales over the summer
HALEY & CLIFFORD
Who they are: Delicatessen based in Leeds. Summer marketing tactic: Picnic hampers are a helpful additional revenue stream in the summer months, with orders from customers who are planning days out or going to festivals like Proms in the Park. Bigger orders from corporate customers entertaining their clients at the cricket or the races can be complex to organise, but are well worth the work. Why it works: It builds customer relationships and is a way for the brand to showcase its high quality foods.
Who they are: Café-deli with a catering arm in Bristol. Summer marketing tactic: Offering picnic hampers for weddings and events, as well as individual picnic bags for office workers who might want to pop up to Bristol Downs for lunch or students hanging out in the park. Why it works: The picnic hampers and bags are easy: customers go in, choose a salad box, fruit, sandwich, cake and drink, and take their meal out into the fresh air. It’s also very visual, so appeals to social media users.
Who they are: Cheese specialists in Muswell Hill since 1982, selling farmhouse and artisan cheeses. Summer marketing tactic: Summer is a quiet period for Cheeses, so they put a lot of effort into social media. They also do free cheese tastings which are a fantastic way to get customers through the door. Why it works: If they post a cheese on social media in the morning, they usually have five or more customers in the shop for that particular product in the afternoon. www.farmanddeliretail.com
Maximise Summer Sales.indd 17
Picnic hampers are a helpful additional revenue stream in the summer months, with orders from customers who are planning days out or going to festivals like Proms in the Park
Who they are: Café and chocolate shop in Sheffield. Summer marketing tactic: We always try to think of families and how to target them in the summer holidays, as they’re usually at a loose end and desperate for something to do – hopefully something fun that involves treats. Last year we ran an offer where the kids would get free ice cream and an activity sheet if the adults bought a cup of tea and some cake. Why it works: During the summer, children often find themselves with too much free time, and parents worry about the mischief and resulting headache that can bring. Cocoa Wonderland sold an experience that filled a timely need – one of the most basic yet often overlooked marketing concepts.
DELILAH FINE FOODS
Who they are: Nottingham-based café and bakery, also selling fine wines. Summer marketing tactic: At Delilah, summer is about aspirational eating. They try to make their menus and retail displays evocative of a time and place which people want to experience. For example, they sell fresh local strawberries pre-, during and post-Wimbledon, and do tapas-style dining just before and after the main holiday period – in addition to gin and prosecco cocktails, refreshing ice lollies and ice creams with a twist, and BBQ dishes. The ‘hire-a-picnic’ hampers are a great product to promote in the period leading up to summer, to get the idea into people’s minds before summer itself arrives. Why it works: They appeal to people’s ideas of what summer happiness is, and then bring it to them in the form of summer drinks and seasonal foods that evoke those particular experiences. Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
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www.bio-bean.com 07/04/2017 13:12
Joint director, Darts Farm Darts Farm is described by Michael Dart as a destination. With a public wetland area for wildlife watching, bicycle hire for nearby nature trails, and a spa oﬀering hair and beauty treatments, Michael and his brothers still maintain an award-winning farm shop that began as a pick-your-own
Photos: Kate Eastman
Michael, tell us about the history of the farm shop – where did it all start?
The farm shop originated in the early Seventies, when our dad went to California. He saw their pick-your-own fruit shops and thought, why not do pick-your-own back home? The concept of selling produce from our farm direct to the consumer began there. With the location of the shop just outside Exeter, we have lots of villages and towns nearby and good roads, so lots of people came to pick their own produce and we started to sell local butter and cheese too. One thing led to another, and we’re now 46 years down the line. The business has transformed and evolved massively over that time – it’s been run by myself and my two brothers James and Paul since Dad died 34 years ago. We’ve increased our offering hugely over the years – we started off with a very basic farm shop and moved into high levels of customer service, with counters like the butchery and deli which have specialist staff who really know the products. In 1997 we put in the restaurant and some non-food departments, and that’s when Darts Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
team of between 250 and 300 employees. We mainly look for a great attitude, happy people who can contribute to an atmosphere that makes our customers want to visit and shop in.
Do you have any expansion plans?
Yes, we’re looking at a cookery school and a microbrewery – I can’t say too much at the moment, but we’ve got some great ideas. It always starts with great ideas, and then you have to work out how they can practically happen. Making sure they’re profitable and right for your business is hard work. The devil is in the detail, and that detail is painful. It’s hours and hours of thought and scrutinising every tiny factor. We started to become an experience-driven retailer. We weren’t just a place to buy food, we were a place to go and enjoy yourself – a destination.
What is the primary goal of the business? To be a dynamic, energetic destination that our customers enjoy visiting. For us, coming to Darts Farm is about enjoying yourself. The pressure is on us to ensure we provide that, seven days a week.
How is the business structured?
Myself and my two brothers run the business, and if we didn’t have a good structure there would be a lot of fighting and duplicating. My older brother Paul runs the farming side of things – the cattle, the vegetables, arable crops etc. – and also oversees the property maintenance at the farm. It’s a large 20
site now, and there’s a lot to keep clean and tidy to ensure our visitors have the best experience possible. My younger brother James and I run the retailing side of the business. James mainly oversees the operational side of things, making sure all the departments and the team are operating to a high standard every day, and being supported in what they’re doing. I’m more the creative side, focusing on how we can keep everything fresh and moving forward, including our marketing and business development.
What’s the secret to managing such diverse elements?
The team is very important – recruiting well and having amazing people work for you is the secret. We’re as strong a business as our team is, and we have a big
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
We started oﬀ with a very basic farm shop and moved into high levels of customer service, with counters like the butchery and deli which have specialist staﬀ who really know the products
take time to do that with expansion plans; we built Darts taking care to go through every detail, and having done it well once we don’t want to now rush in with ideas that aren’t properly thought through.
How do you keep a handle on accounts?
We’ve built up a fantastic internal team at Darts Farm, but we also have a great professional team of accountants, lawyers and planning advisers. All of them have been with us now for over a decade. Our accountant Neil has helped us set up great management accounts, and we look at those every month. Every department has its own profit centre and cost centre; we can look at turnover, wage costs, pretty much every element of profitability and monitor it. Once you’ve got all that structured and set up it’s all relatively easy – the hard work is getting those systems in place.
What awards have Darts Farm Shop won?
We’ve won the 2016 UK Large Farm Shop of the Year at the Farm Shop and Deli Awards, the FARMA Winner of Best Large Farm Shop in the UK 2015, Best Farm Shop in the South West twice at the Food Reader Awards, and most recently, South West Champion for Local Food and Drink in the Countryside Alliance Awards. We’ve won lots of awards and we are driven by that – our team work really hard and are proud of our achievements, and our customers love it too.
What are the biggest challenges you’re facing at the moment? The world is changing. Global brands are here one minute and gone
the next – look at Nokia. Business changes quickly now, and the biggest challenge is to keep the experience at Darts an amazing one. The world we’re living in now is very competitive. Everyone wants everyone else’s business and the food market at the moment is saturated – you have online, supermarkets, discount retailers, you name it, it seems to be out there competing for our customers. The customer is king at the end of the day, they decide who they’re going to spend their money with, so we’re constantly looking to better our service and expand our business to cater for our customers and stay fresh. The moment you forget about your customers’ needs and stop innovating, that’s when your business starts to decline. If you’re an entrepreneurial type I don’t think you ever really relax – you always think someone’s trying to take your customers away from you, which is a good thing. Though we don’t like competition, it does make us better at what we do.
Do you think retailers have a responsibility to operate sustainably?
Yes. We need a sustainable economy that has sustainable businesses within it. We need to support our local communities wherever possible, we need sustainable growth and to not just buy cheaply from abroad to save money by any means necessary. Darts Farm has thrived in a period when the high street has declined – we’ve become a local hub and that’s what people seem to want, but we can’t always be the cheapest because
We built Darts taking care to go through every detail, and having done it well once we don’t want to now rush in with ideas that aren’t properly thought through
we pay our suppliers proper prices. We aren’t interested in bullying our suppliers, they need to make money and invest in their businesses just like we do. Ultimately, we pay a fair price to our suppliers and sell their products at a fair price to our customers. This issue we’re running a feature on combating Brexit price hikes – what would be your advice to smaller farm shops and delis trying not to pass raised prices onto customers? Our principle has always been: do what you do properly and charge the prices you need to charge to make your margins. If we have to sacrifice some of our margin in the odd area then we do that, but we’re very careful with it – we can sacrifice some margins because we’re making margins somewhere else. In terms of Brexit, I’m always the optimist. I think it’s a great opportunity for local production and looking after the amazing food producers we have in this part of the world. I’m not particularly
worried about the price of Parmesan or olive oil going up a little bit, I think ultimately we’ll all be better off.
What’s your number one tip for managing people?
Build a relationship. You can’t be a distant employer, you need to be hands-on and close to your employees, and communicate well with them. As an employer, it’s critical to ensure that the people that work with you understand the values of the business, and know where the company has come from and where it’s going.
What are the biggest lessons you’ve learned along the way?
Take the values you grow up with everywhere you go and in everything you do. If you take them into the business world, most decisions end up being quite easy.
Further Information Darts Farm Darts Farm, Topsham, Exeter, Devon EX3 0QH www.dartsfarm.co.uk
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
rebrand your business? Keelham Farm Shop did, and its annual turnover went up by 79%. Thompson Brand Partners, the agency behind the rebrand, tell us what they did and why
Tell us a bit about your company…
Thompson Brand Partners is a creative agency based in Leeds. Set up over 30 years ago, we specialise in revealing what’s at the heart of brands – even if they don’t know it’s there. And then helping them to communicate it to the world, telling stories through content and digital media.
When did you start working with Keelham Farm Shop? We began working with Keelham Farm Shop in 2010 as part of the Design Council’s ‘Designing Demand’, a national programme helping UK businesses to use design to enable growth.
Why did they feel a rebrand was necessary?
Keelham Farm Shop is a fantastic concept and one unlike any other we’ve come across. It began life as a butchers opened by Harry Robertshaw, in 1929. When we began working with them the business was still run from the family farm in Thornton near Bradford, as it is today. Siblings Victoria and James Robertshaw, Harry’s grandchildren, took over the shop, and they wanted to 22
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
It’s so important to choose people you trust. You’ll be working with them day in and day out so they need to be your kind of people
stay true to its principles of bringing fresh, affordable food from local farmers and producers to the local communities, but they also had big plans for growth. They wanted to create a destination shop that is unlike a typical farm shop or supermarket, and needed help to communicate their story. Keelham already had a loyal customer base and great reputation, thanks especially to their butchering heritage, but Victoria and James wanted to grow the business sustainably and make it the best it could be. They had to define what the business really stood for and communicate it. And they had to have the tools to allow them to shout about it to the outside world – and that meant an appropriate and effective brand and design toolkit. It had to not just transform the business but also bring together and excite the internal team – they had to be completely on board with it for it to truly flourish.
How did you decide on the right brand identity for Keelham?
As with creating any brand identity, it’s about getting to the heart of what matters to them and revealing it – and turning it up to 11/10. We spent time getting to know them, helping to create a strapline that conveys simply what they believe in, that ‘Food tastes better from the farm’. With their help we decided on the brand values – a set of guiding principles that underpinned every decision we made. For example, local is so important to Keelham (they stock products from over 400 local farmers and producers in each shop, as well as nation’s favourites and their own brand products), as is the farming heritage that allows them to supply their own meat, even today. So it felt right to bring animals into the identity, albeit in a distinctive style. It was also clear straightaway that everyone who works at Keelham is warm, fun and funny. So the brand had to embody that too. No po-faced hipster identities here – it was about being warm, welcoming to everybody, and making people smile. A broad toolkit was created, including over 100 icons (and still counting), a huge colour palette with breakdowns for print, digital and also Dulux and RAL references to help them to be consistent in the shop itself, as well as in print. A bespoke typeface was designed too, to communicate the rustic, homemade nature of what they do, as well as the personality of the people behind the brand and to make sure our outputs were consistent and recognisable. All of this said, the brand had to be loved by the people who would use it and see it – both staff and customers. If it was over designed it simply wouldn’t wash.
How did you bring the message to life?
The new branding has been applied to the website, uniforms, e-comms, vehicle livery and throughout the shop. The visual language has also been applied to Keelham’s products. It’s essential their own products stand apart from the branded products on the shelf. The identity has been rolled out across the range with particular focus on their extensive range of jams and chutneys, achieving impressive results. The brand has also helped with internal communications and the development of team members, helping everyone to live the brand values at all times. www.farmanddeliretail.com
The new branding was also rolled out across their new shop. We worked closely with them on every aspect of the new build, consulting on everything from build to finishes and interior decoration.
Why do you think it’s been so successful?
We can only claim a small portion of this success, as without an amazing proposition we’d have no job to do. The public are good at sniffing out when a brand is trying to win their favour. Keelham’s success is down to the fact that their proposition is so fantastic they don’t need to bother with any seduction. It’s driven by real people who love what they do, not a huge corporation with shareholders to keep happy, and you can sense that from the second you step into one of their shops. Their products help too. Their brownies are out of this world. Not to mention their pizzas – all made with Yorkshire flour, home-cured Yorkshire meats butchered right there in the shop, local cheeses… If you can’t tell, we’re the biggest fans of their amazing food!
In the years following the rebrand in 2010, results achieved have been impressive • Annual turnover up 79% • Weekly customer numbers up 39% • Average basket spend up 25% • Sales of own-brand jams and chutneys up 77% • Four years of sales growth rate 10-20% • 97 new jobs created • Total staff up 170% from 56 (2009) to 151 (2014)
What should retailers look for in a good agency?
Remember that, like any other relationship, it’s all about people. It’s so important to choose people you trust. You’ll be working with them day in and day out so they need to be your kind of people. Ask who exactly you’ll be working with so you don’t get fielded a pitch team who’ll then disappear off (something we never do). Look to find people who love what you’re doing as much as you do (or somewhere near). This passion will mean you’ll get extra from the people you work with. They’ll always be switched on for you, always thinking of ideas and looking for things you can learn from, brands you could partner with, suppliers you could meet…
Are you still helping Keelham with their marketing?
We’re proud to have built a fantastic relationship with Victoria and James and one that didn’t peter out after the initial rebrand was completed. They could see the value of what we’ve done for them too, so we work with Keelham month in and month out, providing support on everything from interior design to product design and naming, marketing support and content.
How much should a retailer expect to pay for a rebrand?
Are there any benefits to choosing a marketing agency that’s local to the business?
To understand a brand or business you need to be able to get under its skin. Lots of that can be done remotely but there’s nothing like being there with a client to understand the way their world works. Benefits include the ease with which you can ‘pop’ for a last minute meeting. This proved especially useful when the new Skipton shop was being built; last minute decisions are so common when a building is going up. We also like to head to the shop to see what promotions are going on, take pictures, try product, sample in the restaurant etc.
The public are fantastic at sniﬃng out when a brand is trying to seduce them or win their favour
The old ‘how long is a piece of string’ applies here I’m afraid. Budgets will depend on what you’re looking to achieve, what kind of agency you’re working with and what you’re looking for them to deliver for your budget. A better way of looking at it might be to ask what the investment might do for your business. Look at the additional profit generated for Keelham Farm Shop in the four years to January 2014 – it represents 400 times the original investment in design. The design fee was returned in a month. Having an idea of the value you could stand to gain is a mature way of thinking about your budget, as opposed to ‘how little can I get away with?’
Any tips for start-ups who maybe can’t afford a marketing agency yet?
Ask yourself whether investing early in your brand could help you to get ahead more quickly; work with the right people and it will be an investment worth making, as evidenced by the return that Keelham Farm Shop saw. If you don’t have all of the funds up front, some agencies are now putting their money where their mouth is and may be happy to work with you on an investment basis or results-led bonus structure. But these are not the norm, and you’d need to think carefully about the risk for both parties. There’s also funding out there from local enterprise partnerships and other funding bodies looking to support local start-ups. Look online or speak to someone in the industry. Good luck!
Further information www.thompsonbrandpartners.com
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
Build a winning display (that sells things) Jody Padgham gives lessons in creating profitable displays
n attractive and inviting display is crucial for anyone selling farm products directly to customers. It may seem obvious that an attractive display helps sales, but the nuts and bolts of creating one may be less readily apparent. The customer’s first impression is critical – you never get a second chance to make a first impression. Displays can enhance or detract from your retail environment’s overall image. An abundant, well-tended presentation will draw in customers and encourage them to purchase. A sparse, unkempt display will attract minimal attention, and may be perceived as an indication of inferior products. Develop a concept before you start setting up. Ask yourself: Is this an attractive display? Am I drawn to it? Do I want to buy more products than I originally came in for after viewing this display? Is it easy for me to move around? The answers to these questions will help you develop your own display area.
The purpose of product placement is to arrange your products in a way that immediately entices shoppers – the method you use will be unique 24
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
to the products you are offering. One placement scheme is to arrange the display around power and impulse items. A power item is a product that initially attracts customers and may be featured in advertising; sweet corn, strawberries and apples are all examples of power items. An impulse item is a product that a customer purchases spontaneously after seeing the item displayed. Gift packs, honey and apple peelers are good examples.
Heights and widths
Customers thrive on convenience, easy access and selection. They need a clear view of the display. Products that are placed lower than knee level or above eye level are less visible and less likely to be sold. Keep in mind that the majority of customers are in the 5ft 4in to 6ft 2in height range – adapting your display to the customer’s line of sight is vital to successful marketing. Tables or counters that are 36in to 40in high are convenient for most customers. Avoid displaying products on the floor or ground. Floor or ground level may be dusty and attract insects, and in most cases isn’t the most conducive spot for sales. There are some exceptions to that rule – pumpkins, for example, www.farmanddeliretail.com
Avoid displaying products on the floor or ground. There are some exceptions – pumpkins, for example, look very attractive on the ground and are at the perfect level for those most interested in them: children
look very attractive on the ground and are at the perfect level for those most interested in them: children. The display width as well as height is important to the customer. Shelves should be no deeper than 2ft from front to back. If you are the height of most people, consider what you can reach with ease. Step shelves are attractive and add to the display appearance, but are neither as convenient for shopping nor as easy to restock. It’s essential for the display to be convenient for both the customer and seller. Take carts or baskets, wheelchairs and/or strollers into consideration – aisle width should allow for two-way traffic. This will make the shopping experience less stressful for all, and having enough room will also encourage people to spend more time looking around.
Wondering what items you could use to make your display more attractive? The list is endless – it includes tables, shelves, benches with sloping tops, bulk bins, barrels, baskets, wheelbarrows and carts. Placing the produce in smaller baskets or boxes helps the customer envision a realistic purchase amount. A mix www.farmanddeliretail.com
of packaged and bulk items has visual appeal. The heights and widths previously mentioned should always be considered; you can use empty wooden containers or other supports beneath the product to give the display a fuller look without overstocking. It’s important to show that you’ve taken special care to maintain your product’s quality. You want to promote the look of high quality and freshness for all your products – there’s nothing worse than seeing a food display that looks attractive from a distance, but as you get closer you notice the lettuce wilting. Another placement method is to distribute power items throughout your sales area to lead customers to impulse items. This method is more appropriate for roadside stands and on-farm stores. Taking the lead from other businesses, such as grocery stores, you can display impulse items near checkouts and power items at the front of the stand so that customers will make a commitment to buy something as soon as they walk in. Some direct marketers believe that if power items are not placed in a prominent spot, it discourages shoppers from venturing beyond the front door.
Displaying produce in containers can also enhance a display. There are many types of display containers available including wooden baskets, craft paper bags, plastic and mesh bags. Display containers should protect the product from being bruised and be easy to transport. Many containers make produce look more attractive, and you can add the farm shop or deli name and logo as a reminder of where it was purchased. Pre-packaging may also encourage customers to buy larger quantities, but one of the major disadvantages to pre-packaging is cost. Additionally, many consumers like to inspect produce for defects before purchasing, and this is more difficult when items are pre-packaged. If you’re selling a product such as meat, you may find that sales will increase if you use vacuum-sealed clear plastic packaging instead of butcher paper so that people can view your products. The extra expense may well be worth it if it boosts sales.
Appeal to the senses
We don’t often think about the ways our senses offer marketing opportunities. People use their eyes to select and make purchasing decisions. Poor or so-so visual displays will discourage
The aroma of fresh products has been known to bolster sales. Consider opening a melon or slicing a pear to allow the fragrance and colour to seduce shoppers
buyers or keep them looking elsewhere. The visual display of your product can convince a browser to become a buyer, and colour has appeal to customers. Fruits and vegetables, bedding plants, herbs, honey, maple syrup and many other products all have attractive hues that will draw customers. Alternating colours will enhance the appeal, and light also affects the appearance – fluorescent lighting makes colours look more natural. The taste of fresh products is an attraction, so letting people sample your product is a very effective selling tactic. People are often more willing to spend extra money on a product after they have had the opportunity to taste it. Enticing smells are a powerful attraction; the aroma of fresh products has been known to bolster sales. Seduce shoppers by speaking to all of their senses, and make your displays attractive, well balanced and as easy to enjoy as possible.
Further information Midwest Organic & Sustainable Education Service www.mosesorganic.org
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
Brexitproof your business NFU chairman Meurig Raymond and Future Foundations’ head of innovation Josh McBain talk about the eﬀects of Brexit on farmers, consumers and the farm shop and deli sector, and advise retailers on what they should be doing about it
osh McBain says the referendum’s initial impact on Britain has been remarkably small. “Since the vote to leave we’ve had a fairly soft landing. Things haven’t been as bad as everyone feared – although the overall 2.1% growth that was expected in 2016 for the UK was actually more like 1.8% in GDP.” Meurig Raymond concurs: “If anything, the devaluation of the pound to the euro by about 16-17% left British farmers financially better off; that had a very beneficial effect as imports were more expensive, so there
was a hardening of prices in the UK. Farmers also rely on CAP support payments, which are based on the exchange rate of the pound to the euro in the month of September, so those direct support payments increased on the back of the falling exchange rate.“
The eﬀect on farmers
Though British farmers were better off directly after the EU referendum in straight monetary terms, nine months later Meurig explains the industry is experiencing challenges: “The inputs that farmers require such as feed,
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
fertilisers, fuel and energy have gone up – we’ve seen fertiliser rise at 25% on the back of the lower exchange rate. I also know a lot of farmers have held off on investment programmes because of the uncertainty over the next number of months and years; they are concerned about where prices will be, whether there will be access to labour, will there be any support, what will the trade deals look like – all of that has obviously hit short term confidence.” Not knowing the type of trade deal that will be negotiated is a significant
Delis and farm shops will have the power of being a British brand, and having products that are grown in Britain will become an even bigger selling point than we’ve seen in the past
and ongoing issue for farmers, Meurig continues, as is the state of EU labour: “Farmers are very dependent on non-British labour in harvesting and packaging the crops – if that labour isn’t available, a lot of farmers are going to struggle going forward.” Josh agrees that EU labour is one of the biggest Brexit issues facing farmers: “The Economist just published some statistics revealing that the UK food processing industry includes 120k EU migrant workers, out of 400k total food processing workers in the country. www.farmanddeliretail.com
In the horticultural and fruit farming industry, about 85k workers are EU migrant workers who annually harvest crops.” The third issue for farmers is the uncertainty around the level of direct support they will receive from government, explains Meurig: “Farmers have support from the CAP currently, but when we do exit the EU our competitors will still be the Irish, the Dutch and the Danes; if they are receiving a level of support and we’re not, that will make us much less competitive.”
value in the pound. The pound is far cheaper, and the result for consumers is that their disposable income has been hit. In 2016 disposable income in the UK grew 2.3%, but it’s only going to grow by 0.3% in 2017, by 1.1% in 2018, and by 1.5% in 2019 – not returning to 2016 levels of growth until 2020. For the farm shop and deli sector, which sells a lot of non-essential goods, or goods that are seen as premium, that is going to significantly reduce the amount their customers purchase.”
The eﬀect on consumers
Meurig is firm in his belief that farm shops and delis are in a good position following Brexit. “Every consumer survey we’ve completed at the NFU over the past few years has highlighted that consumers are looking towards provenance – they want to know where their food has come from. Britishness is very much on their agenda, which I
For consumers, Josh says the medium term risk of Brexit is rising inflation. “The latest data shows that inflation was just 0.6% growth in 2016, but the forecast is that this will grow to about 2.5% in 2017, 2.1% in 2018 and 1.8% in 2019. That’s basically being driven by the collapse of the
The eﬀect on retail
Things haven’t been as bad as everyone feared – although the overall 2.1% growth that was expected in 2016 for the UK was actually more like 1.8% in GDP Josh McBain www.farmanddeliretail.com
think came through in the EU referendum as well, so I believe farm shops and delis selling local produce have a very bright future.” Josh agrees that Brexit will bring with it positive opportunities. “It’s likely we will see an impact from import substitution – when products from the EU become more expensive, then domestic, home-grown agriculture and farm products will become cheaper by comparison. At the same time, we’re already seeing a growing focus on local farming, especially in the US but also in the UK. There is a clear desire for more awareness and transparency around where our food is sourced. Delis and farm shops will have the power of being a British brand, and having products that are grown in Britain will become an even bigger selling point than we’ve seen in the past.”
Best and worst case scenarios
“The worst-case scenario is if we come to absolutely no agreement with the European Union,” states Josh. “If we don’t come to any decision or agreement in terms of trade with the EU, we will crash out in 2019 and automatically revert back to World Trade Organisation guidelines. For a range of sectors that will introduce new tariffs far beyond what we could potentially get from an EU trade deal, which would obviously make it more expensive to sell goods in European markets – and more expensive to purchase goods from those markets as well. “Also, if we don’t get an immigration system in place for the key sectors that heavily rely on labour, such as agriculture and
Farmers are very dependent on non-British labour in harvesting and packaging the crops – if that labour isn’t available a lot of farmers are going to struggle going forward Meurig Raymond retail, we will be faced with a significant shortage of labour.” Conversely, though it is almost undeniable now that we are headed for a ‘hard Brexit’, Josh believes there is hope for negotiations around Britain leaving the EU: “The best case scenario would be a Brexit that has deals in place where we’ve negotiated new tariffs across key sectors like agriculture, and agreements where we can still rely on access to EU labour for seasonal jobs in agriculture.”
What retailers can do now
Meurig advises farm shop and deli businesses to source more local or British produce, as a way of protecting themselves against a negative Brexit impact. “Delis and local shops should be looking to purchase
more British products, looking for that security in supply and building a relationship with their British suppliers.” Josh recommends a review on the business as a whole, and an evaluation on the areas that are susceptible to Brexit-related issues: “Ask yourself: how dependent is your business on EU migrant labour? Perhaps you’re not. How stretched is your supply chain? Are you exporting or importing from key European markets? Get a view on the likely impact for your business if new tariffs are introduced on products you are buying or selling from EU markets, and be prepared for them.”
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
What I’ve learnt Three UK retailers discuss how Brexit has aﬀected them and what their plans are for the future... The area we’re in heavily voted to leave. It’s our view therefore that they voted for possible price rises. We are not prepared to let them down
MARK KACARY MANAGING DIRECTOR OF NORFOLK DELI, HUNSTANTON
STEVEN SALAMON OWNER OF WALLY’S DELICATESSEN, CARDIFF
What are you doing to combat price hikes?
How has Brexit affected your business?
In a word, nothing! The area we’re in heavily voted to leave. It’s our view therefore that they voted for possible price rises – we are not prepared to let them down.
Where do you think future price increases are likely to come from?
This entirely depends on the result of discussions surrounding Article 50. If Great Britain finds a way to leave with access to free trade (unlikely) then it may not have too much of an effect. If after two years there’s no agreement, this is likely to have a major effect on our producers and their raw material costs. This could lead to some local producers finding it uneconomic to continue, and it could lead to substantial price rises due to lack of availability. Ultimately a business like ours will need to look at what happens. We would need to consider whether we can pass on price rises or whether we would need to diversify to survive.
So far in two ways – firstly, price hikes, as most of what we sell is originally denominated in euros. Secondly, there’s the uncertainty in what the future holds regarding purchasing from Europe. We don’t know whether there’s going to be tariffs or increased bureaucracy, or what will happen to the exchange rate, which means uncertainty regarding planning.
What are you doing to combat price hikes?
Initially we didn’t pass on all the price hikes at Christmas because we were concerned about the impact on our customers. Now, gradually, we’re realising that we have to pass on the price increase, otherwise our margins are squeezed too much. The other possible solution we’re considering is to buy more British products – in our case particularly Welsh products – but that is difficult because our deli is known for stocking continental European products.
KATHERINE BROWN OWNER OF ROOTS FARM SHOP, NORTHALLERTON Has Brexit affected your business?
To be honest I don’t think the changes in the industry at the moment are to do with Brexit – I think it’s more market forces. The price hikes we’ve seen so far are from British brands; a lot of our small suppliers have held out for the last five years on price increases, and they just can’t hold out any longer, probably due to labour costs and the cost of production going up. In terms of the effect of Brexit, I do think it’s too early to say. It all depends on the deal the UK makes with Europe and a lot of other factors all coming together. 28
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
Our main challenge at the moment is competing with companies like Aldi, which is very cheap but with reasonable quality, which means things like our dry goods are really suffering – wines, beers etc. People are going more British for certain products – we’re doing really well with meat sales at the moment, and also with our home baking items like quiches and pies, but when it comes to the little luxuries like chocolates, I think a lot of today’s customers are turning to the multiples. www.farmanddeliretail.com
GREAT BRITISH ALTERNATIVES Imported food: Camembert
Imported food: Pesto
Typically imported from: Italy British alternative: Olives et al Pesto range Company: Olives et al Why stock it: Super-concentrated, these ambient pestos are made using cutting edge technology to ensure the flavour intensity of a fresh pesto. Available in 135g retail jars, the pestos were launched in stores nationwide in March 2017. Developed to meet demand for high quality produce in convenient, easy to use formats, the unpasteurised pestos are the first of their kind. Five flavours available: nettle & pesto, red pepper & cashew, chilli, tomato and basil & pine nut. RRP £3.50, 135g email@example.com
Typically imported from: France British alternative: Cornish Camembert Company: Arla Foods Ltd Why stock it: Handmade at a Cornish creamery, this Camembert has been carefully developed to give a delicious full-bodied flavour one would normally only expect from an unpasteurised cheese. It has a melting, smooth texture and a wonderfully complex and tangy flavour. RRP: Various ConsumerRelations@arlafoods.com
Imported food: Parmesan
Typically imported from: Italy British alternative: Vintage Clothbound Cheddar Company: Quicke’s Why stock it: Devonshire cheesemakers Quicke’s are responsible for producing the most mature clothbound cheddar available. Aged to 24 months, it develops a sensational, complex flavour much like a classic Parmigiano-Reggiano. Made using the milk from Quicke’s herd of 500 specially bred cows. RRP: £25/kg (250g, 500g, 1.5kg) firstname.lastname@example.org
Imported food: Champagne
Typically imported from: France British alternative: Hattingley Valley Classic Cuvée 2013 Company: Hattingley Valley Why stock it: The product was awarded five silver medals and one bronze in the top 2016 wine competitions and is made using premium Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier grapes as well as a splash of Pinot Gris (2% of the final blend). Made by Hattingley Valley’s team in Hampshire, head winemaker Emma Rice was awarded UKVA Winemaker of the Year 2016. An elegant wine with delicate nose of hedgerow flowers and vibrant green fruit. RRP: £29.95 gareth.maxwell@ hattingleyvalley.co.uk
Imported food: Chorizo
Typically imported from: Spain British alternative: Yorkshire Chorizo Company: Wildman Charcuterie Why stock it: Yorkshire Chorizo is a Spanishinspired paprika-flavoured fermented sausage made in Yorkshire. Town End Farm Shop Ltd works in partnership with local farmers and their own home-bred, grass-fed stock from their Malhamdale farm to produce top quality meat. RRP: £4.50 email@example.com
Imported food: Tomatoes
Typically imported from: Spain, the Canary Islands British alternative: Fresh Isle of Wight tomatoes Company: The Tomato Stall Why stock it: Isle of Wight tomatoes are known for their exceptional flavour and quality. The Tomato Stall’s unique offering is available in pre-packed punnets or loose by the kilo. The range includes pure tomato juices and sauces, all of which are produced on its Isle of Wight nursery. RRP: £1.95, 250g punnets Info@thetomatostall.co.uk Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
How to raise prices without losing customers With Brexit forcing the hands of several retailers and suppliers to increase their prices, it’s essential to adopt the correct approach when announcing and implementing Brexit-related price hikes
hough your customers will be aware of Brexit, and may have been affected by price increases from various companies since the referendum result, they will nevertheless be naturally resistant to paying more money for the same products they’ve always bought. Therefore, the approach and explanation of price increases should be dealt with as effectively as possible.
Customers want to feel well informed about price changes in the products or brands they buy, particularly if they’ve been loyal to a company or outlet for a long time. If a customer feels a company is being sneaky or dishonest with them – particularly about increasing prices – they will stop trusting the business and may look elsewhere. Likewise, customers should find out about price increases from the company itself rather than second hand from another source – this avoids confusion and shows the company is being open and honest about the changes. 30
The first step in increasing prices is to announce it to customers clearly, in a way they feel is honest, informative and in good time before the changes take effect. Make sure all employees are on the same page, know exactly which prices are going up and why. Ensuring all staff members are knowledgeable about price increases and are happy to discuss and explain them is invaluable, as customers will have questions.
Explain your costs
Written information clearly visible on the shop floor is another great way of updating customers about price hikes, and is a chance to fully explain the circumstances surrounding the changes to everyone who visits. Facts and figures can be included that explain why the changes are unavoidable, as could any details or steps the company has taken to minimise extra costs to pass on, including any financial hit it has taken itself, encouraging a feeling of unity between the store and its customers.
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
Do it online
A general announcement across the company’s online and social media platforms will ensure that price changes are communicated clearly and respectfully to as many customers as possible. A timeline should be provided both online and in store to show when they can expect the changes to come into effect.
Show your worth
Customers will pay more if you give them reason to.
Make customers aware of the continued high level of service and great quality of products your company provides, and the work that has been done to ensure the price changes are as minimal as possible. Respectfully remind customers that if prices weren’t increased the company would risk going out of business. Keep in mind that customers are likely to be experiencing similar price increases in other retail industries and from other food retailers as a consequence of Brexit, and should be more likely to understand that price hikes aren’t being carried out to increase profits, but to allow the business to keep running.
A general announcement across the company’s online and social media platforms will ensure that price changes are communicated clearly and respectfully to as many customers as possible
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Add value with...
An ice cream parlour Ice cream is a saleable commodity, and one with a significant mark-up. Workspace advises having a solid business plan if you’re looking to start an ice cream business within your farm shop or deli, as they can be heavily aﬀected by seasonal demand Rum and Raisin
Company: Naturally Coconuts Launched: 2016 RRP: £5.99, 500ml email@example.com
experience. What you choose to offer will depend on the market where you set up, your customer demographic, and the amount of money you have available to brand your business.
You won’t need specific training to open an ice cream shop, but having associated health and safety and hygiene training – and perhaps front-of-house experience – will be useful. Spending time working in a busy ice cream business will give you an idea of what the working day is like, and will also allow you to gain experience actually producing ice creams.
Why start an ice cream business?
Initial start-up costs are not as high as many other businesses, so they’re a good option for first time entrepreneurs or those not willing to risk large amounts of capital. If you’re looking to build on your existing farm shop or delicatessen business and aren’t sure what to expand into, ice cream is well worth considering. 32
Find a unique spin
To differentiate themselves in a crowded market, some ice cream businesses put a novel spin on the traditional ‘cone or tub’ model. They may offer sundaes with a variety of toppings, or unusual ice cream flavours. This can draw in new customers, but does risk turning away ‘one time’ visitors who may want a more traditional
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
Adding Value.indd 32
These will depend on the business model you choose and the type of shop you want to start. If you’re going for a new take on ice cream, such as a sundae emporium, you’ll need to invest money into building a strong brand and marketing. If your shop is located on a busy seafront, you can spend less on marketing because the natural footfall will be high. Equipment will likely be the biggest expense, as you’ll need deep industrial freezers. When buying freezers, ensure you buy the right kind
Initial start-up costs are not as high as many other businesses, so they’re a good option for first time entrepreneurs or those not willing to risk large amounts of capital
for your business. Make sure they have the features you need, such as transparent tops so people can easily select the ice cream, and top and side wiper gaskets for cleanliness. You’ll also need to consider the energy output. Talk to a professional supplier before purchasing.
Compliance and regulation
Any shop serving food and drink must adhere to strict hygiene standards. The Food Safety Act 1990 provides the framework for all food legislation in the UK, while the General Food Law Regulation 178/2002 is a piece of EU legislation on general food safety. These are food law legislation, which is separate to food hygiene legislation. With regards to food hygiene, ensure you speak to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) to make sure your practices and procedures are fully compliant with food hygiene regulations, as the law changes regularly.
Further information www.workspace.co.uk
r What I’ve learnt Crockford Bridge Farm in Weybridge, Surrey tells us why its ice cream parlour has been such a success, and why reacting to demand is a key element It made sense for us to open an ice cream parlour. We’re a ‘pick your own’ farm, we have a highly seasonal summer business, and we’re only open when the fruits are in season, so we have thousands of customers who visit us who are the perfect market for an ice cream parlour. Our local ice cream maker also uses our fruit to make the ice cream for us and to sell themselves, so it’s a great two-way relationship. We’ve been open for six or seven years now, and every year it’s got busier and busier. When we started the parlour it was very hit and miss each day as to whether we would open because it was
so weather dependent. Since then we’ve added coffee machines to make the parlour more weatherproof and less of a risk. It’s meant we can remain open throughout the week, offering consistence and increasing numbers of customers as a result. My advice to a farm shop or delicatessen that is considering adding an ice cream parlour to its offering is simple – make sure you have the demand for it. I think a lot of businesses rush into things like ice cream parlours without considering whether it works for their particular customer base – there’s no point investing in
something that won’t sell. We’re lucky at Crockford Bridge Farm in that we have a natural market of young children in hot weather, who will always want ice cream.
We’ve added coﬀee machines to make the parlour more weatherproof and less of a risk
Cool customers Milk Chocolate
Company: Ice Kitchen Launched: April 2017 RRP: £2 per lolly firstname.lastname@example.org
Creamy Chocolate Blackcurrant and Liquorice Sorbet
Company: Beckleberry Launched: April 2017 RRP: £4.50, 500ml email@example.com
Adding Value.indd 33
Company: Minioti Launched: April 2017 RRP: £4, 500ml firstname.lastname@example.org
Yoghurt Honey and Walnut
Company: Mooka Launched: March 2017 RRP: £2.99, 500ml email@example.com
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
FARM SHOP & DELI AWARDS
How to be an
award-winner Farm S hop Sma ll Re ta of th iler e Yea r 2017 Is this your first year judging the Farm Shop & Deli Awards?
How will your experience in the industry help you when judging Farm Shop Small Retailer of the Year?
No, Nigel Barden brought me in as a judge four ago, and I’ve Cheese years judged every year since. I’ve worked in the food m onNigel With industry for years, but gerliving in the ofbeing south and me I’m a shopper as well, theinY ear 2 the north, our co-chairing so I look at whether 0environment 17 the awards helps us both the is geographically and with welcoming – is it the kind the knowledge base, of place that I want to as we do a lot of visits. shop in? I come at it very Once we’ve shortlisted much from that consumer the award entries we point of view – the personally visit all the appeal, the appearance, applicants – we have a and, particularly, the marathon drive around knowledge of the staff. the country. I think the exchange of For me the visits are information between best part; I love to staff and customers is Dthe eli everyone. meet paramount in a small farm of th It’s only when you goein,Ysee the – I don’t really get ea the2 shop business and chat tor 017into the profit margins, it’s staff that it really comes very much about what’s Judge Elaine Lemm, alive. For me, that’s why on offer and what the the Farm Shop & Deli knowledge base is like. food writer Awards stands out, it’s That level of knowledge that personal contact and communication, rather than just being which I feel we’ve lost an exercise on paper. over the years in our Going out to meet people supermarkets, is one of means there’s a real the reasons why smaller investment in time and farm shops are on the money, and I’m always rise. We’ve reconnected inspired by how hard the with what it’s like to truly people that I visit work. go shopping.
It’s the story that captures my attention
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
F&D Awards.indd 34
What will you be looking for from the entries for Farm Shop Small Retailer of the Year?
When the big package of entries arrives on my desk I sit down and read each entry very thoroughly. What I’m looking for is a commitment to the business, which is very much what the paper entry is about – who they are, what they do, staff training, how they’ve developed and how business has grown. It’s not necessarily about the length of time the farm shop has run; it is staggering when you read about fifth generation farmers, but some of the newer farm shops that are coming through are very exciting as well. Though I can’t speak for the other judges, what I think really comes through is when you read about a person’s passion. That’s when it comes alive, when it’s not just a list of facts and figures on a piece of paper. I like to see the applicant talk about who they are and the passion they have for their business, the care they have for their staff, how they choose their suppliers and the relationships they’ve built up. That lifts from the page for me, and it becomes very exciting.
Is there anything a smaller farm shop could do to stand out to you in this category? I love it when applicants tell us their story. I think a lot of people who are busy with their business think that their story isn’t important to other people – how they came to be in the business, why they’re doing it, who they work with and so on. It’s that story that really captures my attention as a judge: it makes the application real, reading about people and businesses and the time, energy and love that is put into it. As irrelevant as it may seem to some farm shop owners to mention their story in their award entry, to me that’s what really makes it stand out.
FARM SHOP & DELI AWARDS
Farm S hop Sma ll Re ta of th iler Now in its fourth year, the Farm Shope&YDeli ear Awards 2017 recognises 01this 7 year’s awards, the best of the UK’s fine food retailers. Ahead2of three of its esteemed judges give us their insight into what makes for an award-winning entry
Cheese mon ger of
the Y ear 2 0
Is this your first year as a Farm Shop & Deli Awards judge?
Interesting entries are working dynamically with their cheeses
Judge Jamie Hall, national account manager for Neal’s Yard Dairy
F&D Awards.indd 35
How will your experience in the industry help you when judging Cheesemonger of the No, the Farm Shop & Deli Year? Awards organiser, Claire I’ve been in the cheese Bowman, contacted me industry for a while now. four or five years ago, and DI’ve the last six years I’ve a judge every elbeen i of All those years For been at Neal’s Yard, and year since. the Y ear 2 before that I was working of judging have been 7 French cheeses for really helpful in building 01with two years at Borough up an understanding of Cheese Company in the industry. Borough Market. The awards were My job at Neal’s Yard running for a long time is to keep visiting and under a different name, working with our retailers, which changed around so I already know a lot of the time I first started the applicants, as I’ll have judging, and as a whole visited or spoken to them they’ve become much over the years at some slicker. Every year the point. That helps a lot – judges have got together though as a judge we’re and redefined the looking at the paper questions and criteria application in front of us, for application, which seeing the shop firsthand not only makes it easier and knowing what the to judge but also gives business is actually like clear, key points for the gives us the background retailers applying, so knowledge that helps that they know what is inform our decisions. The required of them and applicants are judged by what it is they’ll be us on a combination of marked on. their paper application, and our knowledge and experience of them. The criteria for Cheesemonger of
the Year includes the sustainability of the business, community work, their business plan and a written description of what they think makes them a good cheesemongers. It’s really interesting but it’s a lot of homework for the judges – every year I say: “Brilliant, I’d love to do it again” and then I remember what I’ve let myself in for! It’s a lot of evenings sat reading and marking applications, but it’s so worthwhile.
from those run of the mill, bog standard cheese selections that you can find anywhere in the country – way too many cheeses on the counter, industrial cheeses next to farmhouse, no message, no consistency, no plan on the counter. The cheesemongers that came through strongly this year are the ones that have a belief, a goal, and a movement that they’re working towards and executing; the judges really jumped on them.
What will you be looking for from the entries for Cheesemonger of the Year?
Is there anything a cheesemonger could do to stand out to you in this category?
At Neal’s Yard we work very differently from other wholesalers in that we select mature cheeses, that’s our job. I’ve visited a lot of farm shops, delis and cheesemongers around the country who are all getting the same cheese products from a wholesaler. The merchandise is often the same everywhere, which is so uninspiring. The interesting entries this year are the cheesemongers who are actually working dynamically with their cheeses – they aren’t just ordering the same old thing, they’re working on taste and educating their customers. I’m looking for businesses that are moving away
I think for me it’s about the companies that have that interaction with their customers, and try to educate them about cheese. I’m looking for places that have made a deliberate step away from the usual, with the confidence to stock a smaller range of select cheeses; those that are more involved in the taste of the product and the responsibility of the farms that produce them.
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 35
FARM SHOP & DELI AWARDS
Deli of th e Yea r 201 7
How did Deli of the Year come about as an award?
It all comes down to people
Judge and award creator Giles Henschel from Olives Et Al
Winding back to 1998, we realised that a lot of delicatessens had a real issue around February time. The lead up to Christmas was really good and January was okay, but then the credit card bills would arrive and everybody would just stop shopping. That meant a lot of hardpressed deli owners were struggling to survive that month, so we thought we’d try and do something to help. We came up with Purple Love Day, an event on 14 February to coincide with Valentine’s Day, where we said: “Look, the high streets are always doing chocolate and lingerie around now, why can’t we get the independents to do something based around food?”
And was it a success?
It was very successful, and we started looking at making it longer to give the independents an opportunity to get more out of it, which led to Purple Love Week. That was a whole week based around food tastings in store, designed to encourage people to go into delicatessens and buy things, basically to keep the tills busy during February. I think it really helped, but there was nothing on a national scale – independents are, by nature, independent. They don’t necessarily 36
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
F&D Awards.indd 36
collaborate, and nobody was collaborating on their behalf, so we decided that we would. We gradually grew Purple Love Week until around 2005 and 2006, when we really went to town on it and it became a firm fixture in the calendars for independent delis and farm shops. Around that time Purple Love Week grew into a Deli of the Year competition. We didn’t do the judging for it – to remain impartial as a supplier we opened it up to every deli and farm shop regardless of whether we worked with them, and we had judges such as the head buyer at Fortnum & Mason, food journalists and previous winners. It was a huge project for us – we had somewhere in the region of 500-600 entrants. We were approached by William Reed, who owns The Grocer magazine and also holds the Farm Shop & Deli Show. I told them about my desire to do an awards scheme similar to theirs but not wanting to clash, and suggested incorporating Deli of the Year into the show – which is exactly what we did.
do. No two delis are the same – there’s always an expression of the owners’ individuality and personality. That’s what shines through, and that’s what the judges are looking for. We want to see the personality of the owner, and that they take themselves very professionally – they have to really understand their product, not just buy whatever is cheapest. An understanding of where value is created and a genuine effort to do things differently is really important too, rather than just trying to bash multiples over the head. Multiples are a fact of life, we have to co-exist, and delis absolutely can exist alongside multiples. Sometimes the best place to open a deli is right next to a supermarket. People go to delis because they want a different customer experience, and that’s what the environment you create is all about – it all comes down to people. Judges will be looking at the difference the people behind the deli make to the customer experience.
What will the judges be looking for in the Deli of the Year entries? Signs that the person who is in charge (and the whole team at the deli), genuinely, sincerely cares about what they
FARM SHOP & DELI AWARDS
How I did it Andy Swinscoe, owner of The Courtyard Dairy, tells us why he believes his company won Cheesemonger of the Year in 2013 and 2016 How did The Courtyard Dairy start up? We started in 2012. I’d worked in cheese for some time, first for Mons Fromage in France and then at various cheesemongers’ in the south of England before heading back north. There wasn’t much opportunity in terms of buying and quality in the north, so we decided to have a go ourselves; we got a unit in North Yorkshire and started making proper cheese.
What do you think separates The Courtyard Dairy from other cheesemongers?
We’ve got a small shop and it’s forced us to be specialist, which has been a good thing. We only do 30 cheeses, and we try to make 30 that have a true identity – proper, pasteurised and made on the farm. We make sure we aren’t watering anything down and we stick to our ethos of traditional farmhouse cheese; we don’t compromise at all. The other thing is our knowledge – we’ve worked in cheese for a long time, and we’ve visited the maker of every single cheese we stock and made the cheese with them. Who stocks your cheeses? The majority of our stock is sold in the North Yorkshire area; we do stretch out a little further, but most of what we sell is online, through mail www.farmanddeliretail.com
F&D Awards.indd 37
order or retailed in our own shop. We also sell to restaurants and delis in Leeds and Sheffield.
What awards have The Courtyard Dairy – and its products – won?
We won Cheesemonger of the Year in 2013 and 2016, and just after we’d opened we won Best New Cheese Shop at the British Cheese Awards. All those awards have made a difference to our business.
Have you seen consumer demand change for cheese in the past few years?
I think people are more aware of the products they’re buying and where they’re coming from. Once upon a time the main market for cheese in the UK was cheddar, but in the last 15 years people have started to branch out more. Consumers are getting more adventurous, they want to try something new and different, and they want to know how and where their products were sourced.
Do you have any future predictions for cheese trends?
I think with the low price of milk there will continue to be more small farmhouse producers, and I think we’ll see more soft cheeses on the market because they have a short turnaround for those producers. The rise in goat’s cheese, sheep’s cheese and blue cheese – which weren’t
that common initially – will continue. People are used to Danish Blue and the French goat’s cheeses, which are very aggressive flavours, but they are realising that there’s more out there and that will lead to a widening of the market.
Which cheeses should no farm shop or deli be without?
It depends on your location, but for us we try to stick to specialist. Stichelton is an amazing Stilton style that we wouldn’t be without, it’s a great cheese and one of our biggest sellers. You’ve got to have a cheddar – we go for Hafod because it’s just such an amazing butter rich cheddar – and we also sell an awful lot of Lancashire cheese. Every farm shop or deli has got to have a high quality crumble, a cheddar and a blue. There’s a lot of diversity out there nowadays, but those are the big ones for us.
What’s your newest cheese product?
In the last couple of months we’ve worked with a small farm in North Yorkshire who have developed a Moorland Munster cheese, which is wash rind with quite a powerful, pungent flavour. It’s really interesting and has only been in production for two months. The production is very limited – there’s not much of it made at all – but it’s going down really well.
And what’s your most popular?
For us, Lancashire is the biggest seller week in, week out. That’s the area we’re in, right on the border of Lancashire, and our customers have grown up with it. We do increasingly get customers who want more adventurous stuff, but the day-to-day cheese is always going to be Lancashire and we sell a lot of it.
Do you have any plans for expansion?
We’re planning to move just down the road where we can do more ageing of cheese and have a more of a facility on site to look after our cheeses. It will give us a slightly bigger shop, a cafe and will allow us to be more involved in our cheeses. We’re hoping to be there by the end of this year.
What’s the journey the cheese takes from the farm to being purchased by a customer?
We’ll select the batches of cheese we specifically want at the farm, and they will then go to our shop, where we’ll age them if they need it for anything between two weeks and six or seven months. Once the cheese is ready to be sold, we put it out on the counter and cut it to the size the customer wants. We suggest our customers eat the cheese they buy within a few weeks because that’s when they’re at their best.
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
“The Champagne of Health Drinks” ONLY 17 Calories
Packed with natural goodness
Try Botonique for yourself at: NEC Farm Shop & Deli 24-26 April Stand J60
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Food&Drink SUMMER DRINKS
Adult soft drinks p40
Alcohol-free alternatives p41
Trading with p42
Craft mixers p43
Why design matters p44
Summer drinks special From fruit carbonates to craft mixers to ‘zero-proof’ booze alternatives, the adult soft drinks market is booming. Our six-page special has all you need to make the most of the opportunity it presents this summer
Summer Drinks.indd 39
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
Thirst for adult soft drinks grows
GROWN-UP SOFT DRINKS
As drinks companies respond to the market trend for natural and premium ‘zero-proof’ alcohol substitutes, we take a look at what to stock and how to sell it
dult soft drink sales have soared over the past few years. Kantar Worldpanel data shows sales have increased by 12.3% in the last 12 months alone, bringing the market up by £11m to a total of £101.2m – despite total soft drink sales dropping by 2% over the same period. A key factor in this expansion is the growing rate of abstinence in consumers, particularly millennials, who are limiting their alcohol intake in unprecedented numbers. According to The Grocer’s Adult Soft Drinks Category Report in 2016, 19% do not drink alcohol at all, 66% say alcohol isn’t important to their social lives, and 41% report that alcohol is less important to their social lives than their parents’. Far more health and ecoconscious than previous
Innovation is evolving beyond virgin cocktail blends to more sophisticated nuances 40
generations, millennials are increasingly looking for alcohol alternatives that taste great, are ethically sourced and have healthy, natural and premium ingredients. According to the GlobalData report ‘Adultifying soft drinks: capitalising on rising adult demand for non-alcoholic beverages’, consumers are demanding more sophisticated products for everyday consumption and special occasions. Tanvi Savara, consumer insight analyst for GlobalData, says: “Consumers value products that are distinct from the mass market and exude superior quality through unique flavours, natural premium ingredients and ‘craft’ production techniques.” Savara says the trend has led brands to launch an increasing number of products mimicing the flavours and sensory experiences of alcoholic drinks: “Innovation is evolving beyond virgin cocktail blends to more sophisticated nuances, taking inspiration from production techniques and ingredients synonymous with alcoholic drinks.”
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
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Great Uncle Cornelius Ginger
Company: James White Launched: September 2014 This traditional-style ginger beer is spiced with root ginger juice, giving it a greater ginger flavour. RRP: £2.70, 750ml tipperhelene@ jameswhite.co.uk
Company: NIX&KIX Launched: March 2017 Operating out of the back of a small shop in Shoreditch, all of NIX&KIX’s drinks are spiced with cayenne chili. RRP: £1.99, 330ml firstname.lastname@example.org
Organic Real Cola
Company: Gusto Launched: 2 April 2017 Made in Devon using Exmoor spring water, blue agave and African cola nut, then packed in glass bottles. RRP £1.89, 275ml email@example.com
Company: Dalston’s Launched: March 2017 Created in Dalston in 2012, Dalston’s Lemonade is made from real fruit, spring water and beet sugar, and is also available in cola and orangeade flavours. The company now runs out of Dalston Brew Yard, and uses ingredients sourced from London markets. RRP £1.19, 330ml firstname.lastname@example.org
Company: JARR Kombucha Launched: April 2016 Hand-brewed and bottled by a small team in east London, JARR is a raw fermented tea made with only four ingredients. RRP: £3.99, 240ml email@example.com
Company: Seedlip Launched: May 2016 A non-alcoholic spirit made from peas, hay and herbs, based on a 17th century recipe and first brewed in the founder’s woodland kitchen. RRP: £27.99, 70cl firstname.lastname@example.org
Company: Proximo Spirits UK Launched: 1 March 2017 A botanical soda made using Welsh spring water and natural ingredients, including rhubarb, nettle, dock leaves and juniper berry extract. The ‘lost’ soda was first made in 1896, with the profits paying for 150 coal miners and their families to emigrate to the US; production was stopped in 1910 due to a shortage of dock leaves. RRP: £1.89, 330ml email@example.com
Company: Genius Drinks Launched: June 2016 An alcohol-free wine alternative with the dry taste of sparkling wine and botanical extracts, including herbs, spices and citrus. Intended to be consumed either on its own or as a mixer or spritzer, with one sixth of the calories of wine and no added sugar. RRP £6.99, 750ml firstname.lastname@example.org
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These are customers worth looking after: they are often women controlling the household food budget, who find it insulting to be expected to drink sweet simple drinks just because they want less alcohol Hilary Marsh, Genius Drinks
sales tips for soft drinks
Trystan Farnworth, commercial director of convenience and impulse at Britvic
STOCK THE RIGHT RANGE Go for as broad a range as you can, including carbonates, juices and juice drinks, energy and vitality drinks. Don’t forget to take advantage of growing segments such as iced tea, which are more interesting for discerning customers.
GREAT MERCHANDISING Group categories together to make it easier for shoppers. We recommend segmenting the chiller into carbonates, stills, energy/ vitality, and water/water plus. Always make sure single-serve drinks are chilled and ready to drink, to drive impulse purchase.
HIGHLIGHT NPD Shoppers want to discover new things, so make sure new carbonated soft drinks stand out in the chiller, with additional points of sale around the store to point customers in the right direction.
BE VISIBLE Make sure your adult soft drinks are in a prominent location in store, such as near the till area, to encourage impulse buying. Restock shelves frequently to keep up with demand – any gaps in the chiller represent potential missed sales.
MAKE THE MOST OF FOOD OCCASIONS Soft drinks are the most frequently bought to-go item, with 39% of shoppers buying a soft drink versus 24% purchasing confectionery. To increase the number of items bought for on-the-go consumption, offer meal deals across food and drink.
OFFER VALUE As well as offering promotions and crosscategory deals, price-marked packs are a great way of reassuring shoppers that they are getting great value.
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
Charitable choices Lemonaid and ChariTea are vegan, organic beverages, every sale of which contributes to the brands’ charitable organisation. Managing director Julian Warowioﬀ says he hopes they can incite social change
LEMONAID AND CHARITEA UK LAUNCH DATE: APRIL 2015
What’s the story?
We started the Lemonaid & ChariTea project to incite and shape the process of social change. With each bottle we want to make a small contribution and to change the world drink by drink – a little, at least. Every bottle purchased supports our charitable organisation Lemonaid & ChariTea e.V. So far, we’ve raised more than £1m, which the charity can use for a variety of development projects in the farmers’ communities. Our drinks are made from the best Fairtrade ingredients, organically grown in small certified farming cooperatives. We pay higher prices for our raw ingredients and thus support fair and humane agriculture. With Fairtrade
bonuses, local farmers can improve their living conditions and initiate community projects.
What’s hot about the stock?
Both Lemonaid and ChariTea are organic, Fairtrade and free from any preservatives, artificial sweeteners or flavourings. Lemonaid is a completely vegan and slightly sparkling soft drink made from the best fresh juices and sweetened with cane sugar, available in lime, passionfruit and blood orange flavours. ChariTea is an iced tea, freshly brewed from whole leaf tea, refined with pure juices and lightly sweetened with organic agave syrup (except for ChariTea Green, which
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
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is sweetened with honey and thus is the only flavour that is not vegan). The drink is available in ChariTea Red (rooibos tea with passion fruit), ChariTea Green (green tea with ginger and honey), ChariTea Black (black tea with lemon), and ChariTea Mate (sparkling yerba mate tea with natural caffeine).
Our drinks are made from the best Fairtrade ingredients, organically grown in small certified farming cooperatives
Currently stocked in
Selfridges & Co; Harvey Nichols; Whole Foods Market; Daylesford Organic Farm; Gail’s Artisan Bakery; Planet Organic; Sourced Market; plus 550+ independent cafes, delis and health food stores throughout the UK.
Further information Lemonaid Beverages 239 Old Street, London EC1V 9EY 020 34 7575 33 email@example.com
Mixing it up With craft spirits taking over the marketplace, matching mixers were always sure to follow. Paul Bendit, owner of Folkington’s Juices, gives us the lowdown on the trend to spend a little extra on their spirits and the mixers that accompany them, in exchange for a higher quality taste and experience. Being nonalcoholic, craft mixers are also an increasingly popular choice for customers choosing to abstain from drinking while still wanting maximum taste.
What’s driving the trend?
What’s the appeal?
Craft mixers are an expanding market that has become particularly popular for the millennial customer base, making mixology an easy feat in the comfort of your own home. In response to the boom of premium and craft spirits, craft mixers cater to customers who are increasingly willing
Indian Tonic Water
The gin craze in particular has gone bonkers over the past ten years. Retail sector gin sales were up 13% last year, with 40 new craft gin brands launched, which is a huge amount of craft spirit activity. What’s going on in the mixer world is that companies like us are noticing the imbalance between the increasing number of craft gins, rums, whiskies and so on, versus the small number of tonics and mixers to go with them.
Company: Folkington’s Launched: February 2017 Available in Indian Tonic Water, Dry Ginger Ale, Bitter Lemon, Lemonade and Club Soda, the artisan mixer range aims to compliment a growing band of artisan gins, vodkas and dark spirits. Sold in minican packs of eight to reduce customers buying individual cans, maximising meaningful purchases. RRP: £4.99, 8x150ml firstname.lastname@example.org
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The handful of mixers that are available tended to be from very old established businesses like Schweppes, so a few companies are now joining the fray, including Fever-Tree and us. That lack of selection in mixers compared to the huge increase in craft mixers is one of the big reasons we decided to release our artisan mixer range.
CRAFT MIXERS Original Pickle Juice
Company: The Pickle House Launched: January 2014 Brewed for 12 weeks with sliced cucumbers to mellow the acidity of the vinegar, creating a smooth-tasting pickle juice. Add to cocktails for a kick, or drink as a whisky chaser. Created in Hackney, London, as a pickle juice specifically for drinking. RRP: £10.50, 500ml florence@thepickle house.com
Who are the customers?
If you look at what’s going on out there you’ll find that premium mixers are for anybody and everybody. Suddenly the world seems to have woken up to the fact that you don’t have to drink cheap and nasty stuff with artificial ingredients in it. If you’re spending a decent amount of money on a good spirit, you may as well spend a few pence more on a good mixer to have with it.
Company: Qcumber Launched: January 2013 This cucumber-flavoured sparkling water works with spirits or in cocktails. Inspired by a glass of gin with slices of cucumber enjoyed by founder Graham Carr-Smith one summer’s evening. RRP: £2.65, 750ml sales@cotswold-fayre. co.uk
Coconut & Lime Pressé
Company: Belvoir Fruit Farms Launched: April 2014 Made from young green coconuts, lime juice and spring water; can be consumed alone or as a mixer. Marketed as an exotic summer drink. RRP: £4, 4x250ml alister@belvoirfruitfarms. co.uk
Company: Fentimans Launched: 2014 A pink beverage built around ginger root and Spanish lemon juice, infused with aromatic rose oil from the ‘Valley of the Roses’ in Bulgaria. Works with gin or as a soft drink. Fentimans’ fastest growing beverage, with the biggest growth through the summer months. RRP: £1.50, 275ml email@example.com Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
Why design matters Lisa Desforges, strategy director at B&B Studio, was responsible for giving leading craft mixers Fever-Tree and Dalston’s a design refresh. She tells us why design is so important in this category Tell us a bit about your work with Fever Tree and Dalston’s…
The two were very different projects – a design evolution for Fever-Tree, and a design revolution for Dalston’s. Fever-Tree was already a successful brand with a great product and a strong position (that position being: if three-quarters of your drink is the mixer, make sure it’s the best). However, the packaging design wasn’t working hard enough. While the brand’s cinchona tree logo and metallic labels had real ownability, their application across a growing range of SKUs (Stock Keeping Units) and packaging formats had led to illegibility and inconsistency. Keen to retain the brand’s recognisable DNA, we began with a detailed design analysis of the identity and packaging. The final solution is a masterclass in attention to detail, giving existing equities room to shine and revealing a more premium and iconic brand. The cinchona tree itself is reshaped, and overlapping type is shortened and emboldened for improved legibility. It’s also featured on a new neck label, which helps hide uneven fill levels. The logo has been redrawn as a more ownable piece of type, while an improved messaging hierarchy aids consistency and range navigation. Colours across the range have been tweaked to feel tastier yet still natural, and each has been painstakingly matched in both the metallic label substrate and the card of the outer packaging. Dalston’s was different. The creation of the brand was a reaction to the Coca-Cola branding that covered East London during the 2012 Olympics. The design was raw and edgy, but the product was brilliant – handmade with real ingredients sourced from the local market. It was clear it had potential to make its mark in bars and supermarkets alike, so we were asked to reinvent the packaging with a compelling identity, able to evolve the brand 44
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
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For new and emerging brands with a limited marketing budget, packaging design is the single most important communications medium, as it’s both essential and tangible
from its hipster niche into an established soft drinks maker, while still communicating its hands-on approach to production. Mindful of the boom in both craft spirits and craft soft drinks, we were keen to avoid the codes and clichés of the category – from hand drawn type to artisanal language. The resulting identity features a dominant D, which incorporates a series of expressions of the handmashed product process – from grating ginger to squeezing fruit. It’s accompanied by a bold vertical logo, and presented on a wraparound label that echoes the shape of the D. The tasty, eye-catching, colour palettes can be seen across body and neck labels and caps, and are designed to offset the natural colour of each drink for a vibrant and refreshing effect.
How important is design for craft mixers?
For new and emerging brands with a limited marketing budget, packaging design is the single most important communications medium, as it’s both essential (you can’t sell product without it) and tangible (consumers have to hold it in their hands). The more craft and challenger brands launch creative packaging, the more the bigger established brands have to reconsider their design.
Why do you think demand for craft mixers is increasing?
The trend towards drinking less but drinking better is driving the demand for craft mixers. On the one hand, you have teetotalers or those looking for an alcohol-free option, who will consume craft mixers unmixed, as a more grownup and often less sweet soft drink. Then you’ll have drinkers who are moving towards better quality, more premium craft spirits, and don’t want to ruin them with the taste of an additive-filled artificial mixer.
Further information www.bandb-studio.co.uk
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BARBECUE SAUCES & MARINADES
Add flavour to the
Summer barbecue Rosemary and Tomato Ketchup
Company: A Little Bit Fresh Launched: September 2016 Made using fresh rosemary, to be used as a dip or marinade. Free of preservatives, colourings and additives, made using only natural ingredients. A herby twist on a barbecue season essential, unique, tangy and packed full of tomatoes. RRP: £3.95, 260ml firstname.lastname@example.org
Company: Angus and Oink Launched: April 2016 A sweet and hot mango and habanero sauce. Made with Congo peppers, this West Indian pepper sauce was inspired by a trip through Trinidad. With the hot sauce market growing around 9% each year, jerk and Caribbean food appears to be increasing in popularity in the barbecue market. RRP: £4, 150ml email@example.com
Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
Sticky Chinese Barbecue Sauce
Company: The Bay Tree Launched: March 2017 A rich sauce that can be used as a condiment, glaze or marinade for food cooked on a barbecue or in an oven. Using traditional Chinese ingredients like ginger and soy sauce, it works well with ribs, pork, steaks, chicken and tofu. RRP: £2.99, 240g firstname.lastname@example.org
BBQ Mop Sauce
Company: Meat Lust Launched: April 2016 A smoky outdoor-grilled flavour to be used as a marinade and dipping sauce. Inspired by traditional Deep South barbecue pits, where mops would be used for basting. The squeezy bottle is influenced by chefs, with a chopped nozzle for thicker flow. RRP: £2.50, 250ml hello@theflava people.co.uk
Reavers Ghost Chilli Cajun Rub Company: Firefly Launched: February 2016 Hailing from the Frenchspeaking part of Louisiana, this traditional Cajun rub packs a punch with the heat of the fiery ghost pepper. Use on prawns, chicken, brisket, ribs or pork shoulder, or as a seasoning mix for gumbo and jambalaya. RRP: £3.99 shop.admin@ fireflybbq.co.uk
Broaden your range of...
Dressings Auntie Frog’s Lime & Chilli Dressing Company: Scarlett & Mustard Launched: Summer 2012 Works on stir fry, as a sauce, marinade or over salad. Set up by Sandy and Julian after Sandy’s son started selling her grandmother’s tarragon dressing at the end of their road. Named after Sandy’s sister. RRP: £3.99, 250ml jean@scarlettand mustard.co.uk
Classic House Vinaigrette
Company: Lucy’s Launched: March 2017 The new sixth product to the ‘Deli Range’ of dressings, with a light lemony flavour. Originating from her busy family kitchen in Suffolk, all of Lucy’s dressings are created from her own recipes and have won four Great Taste awards. RRP: £4.75, 250ml orders@lucys dressings.co.uk
Hemp Seed Oil
Company: Erbology Launched: September 2016 An organic cold-pressed hemp seed oil. High in omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids, a tablespoon can be added to salads, porridge and smoothies. Launched in London by siblings Irina and Victor Turcan, Erbology targets a wholesome, natural living market. RRP: £7.99, 220ml email@example.com
Organic Coconut Vinegar
Company: The Coconut Company Launched: December 2015 Derived from coconut sap and naturally fermented for 10 months, with no fermentation agents or added sugars. Coconuts are ethically sourced with Organic, Fairtrade, Kosher and Halal accreditation. RRP: £4.99, 250ml vicky@thecoconut company.co
Company: Tigg’s Launched: April 2017 A smoked tomato, paprika and chilli dressing with 19 calories per serving. The Smokin’ Tomato dressing is the first product created by brothers Jacob and Sam that was not handed down to them by their grandmother, Granny Tiggs. Each of Tiggs’ dressings comes with a ‘dating bio’ to help customers dress their food. RRP: £3.99, 250ml firstname.lastname@example.org
Company: Womersley Relaunched: September 2015 Awarded the Great Taste Gold Award in 2014, with a strong fruity flavour and noticeable vinegar acidity. The Parsons family was inspired to create their fruit vinegars after a trip to a Yorkshire pub in the Eighties, where they tried a raspberry vinegar dressing on a ‘proper’ Yorkshire pudding. RRP: £5, 100ml email@example.com
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Farm & Deli Retail • April/May 2017
Retail Solutions for Farm Shops and Delis Natural Excellence since 1864 many other amazing seafood and speciality products. Suitable for your chilled cabinets or selling over the counter. Small minimum orders delivered nationally. Full technical support available to our customers. Please contact us for our latest price list and special offers.
10 Thornbury Road Estover Plymouth PL6 7PP T: 08702 400172 F: 08702 400173 W: www.meridian-sea.com E: firstname.lastname@example.org
To view our collection www.gadsby.co.uk email@example.com 01278 437 123
Our story is simple. Great food really excites us...and we want to bring authentic Indian cooking and flavours into your home with a helping hand from us.
What’s important to us is producing quality, authentic food and this is where our business started. It is about keeping things simple – creating flavour without fuss! If you do have time to be more inventive then the pastes and rubs are a great foundation for experimentation. Our Spiced Korma Paste makes a delicious curry sauce but I have used it in carbonara too. It’s been an exciting journey to deliver the final range and we hope that you enjoy the authenticity of our Indian food – made a little bit easier with Dhaniya.
PO BOX 6308, Milton Keynes, MK1 9FY tel: 07775 207491
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Top farmers’ markets
The South West STROUD FARMERS’ MARKET
This award-winning market is one of the biggest (with 55 stalls) and busiest of its kind, yet the produce remains incredibly local, all of it originating from within a 17-mile radius. Best For A wide range of farm produce and artisan foods, including cooked food stalls, seasonal events, local crafts and an ‘al fresco’ market café. Where Cornhill Market Square and surrounding streets. When Every Saturday, 9am-2pm. www.fresh-n-local.co.uk
2 ST NICHOLAS FARMERS’ MARKET
Bristol’s ‘St Nick’s’ has a reputation for dishing up some of the best lunchtime treats the city has to offer. In addition to the covered market, there’s a Wednesday farmers’ market, as well as street food on sale every Wednesday and Friday. Best For Delicious homemade jams, wonderful crumbly breads, olives, venison, smoked cheddar, honey and cider. Where The Exchange, Corn St, BS1 1JQ When Monday to Saturday, 9.30am-5pm. www.stnicholasmarketbristol.co.uk
TOTNES GOOD FOOD MARKET
Devon’s biggest monthly fine food market won a Taste of the West Gold Award in 2014, and promotes the best of Devon’s food with over 60 local traders. Best For Devon cider and beer, chillies and chutneys, fabulous cakes, cheeses, pickles and olives. A myriad of hot food stalls, plus locally caught crab, oysters and scallops. Where Totnes Market Square at the top of Fore Street. When Every third Sunday, 10am-3pm. www.totnesgoodfood.co.uk
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WELLS FARMERS’ MARKET
Small but perfectly formed, the cathedral city’s longstanding farmers’ market was judged Best South West Farmers’ Market and offers a wide variety of outstanding quality foods across 15-20 stalls. Best For Free range eggs and poultry and rare breed pork. Award-winning cheddar cheese, plus products fragranced with Mendip lavender. Where The Market Place in front of the Town Hall, BA5 2RB (look for the green and white striped canopies). When Every Saturday, 9am-2pm. www.somerset farmersmarkets.co.uk
FROME FARMERS’ MARKET
This indoor market is held all year round on the second Saturday of each month. Stalls are many and varied, and the market won a Gold Award in the Taste of the West Hospitality & Retail Awards for 2014. Best For Low fat West Country Water Buffalo meat, a range of goat’s cheese, and Dorset shellfish fresh from Weymouth. Where Frome’s Cheese and Grain Market Hall, with a café on site. When Second Saturday of each month, 9am-1pm. www.somerset farmersmarkets.co.uk
Farm & Deli Retail • Month 2017
MEET THE PRODUCER
The story behind...
Cornish Cheese Co
Owner Philip Stansfield has been producing Cornwall’s first farmhouse blue cheese from the family farm 16 years
champion at the Bath & West Show in 2006. The real breakthrough came in 2010 when Cornish Blue was named world champion cheese at the World Cheese Awards. It was a surreal moment and sales really took off.
Do you supply nationwide?
We supply the whole of the UK and we export. We supply through a series of wholesalers and we also have an online shop, which we manage ourselves using a next day delivery service.
Do you offer samples? We currently have a sample pack offer in place for delis and farm shops – if they order 2kg, we will offer 1kg for sampling purposes.
How do you promote your business?
What’s the story behind Cornish Blue Cheese? Cornish Blue has been produced on our farm on Bodmin Moor since 2001. At that time, milk prices had collapsed, and we noticed there was no blue cheese being made in Cornwall. I enrolled on a cheesemaking course, we turned a former bottling plant at the end of the milking parlour into a cheese production facility, and Cornish Blue was on its way.
Is there just one product or a range?
Currently the range consists of just Cornish Blue, but we’re always 50
looking for opportunities for development.
Did you plan to position it in the gourmet food sector?
Cornish Blue was developed as an artisan cheese. We don’t specifically target the gourmet food sector but we’re always delighted when chefs use it as an ingredient in their gourmet ranges.
When did you first realise the product would be a success?
Probably when we won the Tesco cheese challenge in 2004, and then won supreme
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We don’t specifically target the gourmet food sector but we’re always delighted when chefs use it as an ingredient in their gourmet ranges
important that the buying public understands the reasons why they should buy artisan products as opposed to mass produced and often lower priced alternatives.
What about marketing the product’s story? Is that important?
Absolutely. We are very proud that Cornish Blue is produced on our farm from milk from our cows, which gives the cheese full provenance.
How important is the farm shop and deli sector?
It’s hugely important – it offers the public easy access to local, artisan and specialist foods. The farm shops and delis have a key role to play in educating food buyers on the benefits of the products they sell.
Almost since we started we’ve advertised in specialist food magazines. We also enter awards, have a stand at around 30 food shows and events each year, and keep active digitally via regular email marketing to our segmented database, social media and ensuring our website is continually added to.
Do you see the fine food sector growing?
Who designed the packaging?
Anything new in the pipeline?
We use Rebecca Morton, a local designer who has been with us since we started.
Is there anything else like it in the UK – who are your direct competitors? It’s difficult to define ‘direct competitors’. Our key challenge is that as the number of cheese producers grows, it’s going to become increasingly
Very much so. With global food movements people are becoming more aware of where their food comes from, and buying local offers more security. Likewise as people become more health conscious they’re beginning to recognise that quality is more important than quantity.
In 2015 we completed our production facility expansion to cope with the rising demand for Cornish Blue. Demand has continued to grow and we are now looking at further expansion. It’s a very exciting time.
Further information 01579 363660 www.cornishcheese.co.uk
We’re delighted to have been unveiled as Best Preserves Brand* Marion Darlington began making her unique Lemon Curd in 1980 in the farmhouse kitchen and since then we’ve never looked back. Today with over 80 family favourites to choose from; there’s so much more to the Mrs Darlington’s family!
To find our more about Mrs Darlington’s please call us on 01270 250710 or visit our website at www.mrsdarlingtons.com * Best Brands Survey 2016/2017 - Fine Food Digest
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Artists in Cheese Making
Tel: +44(0)1825 831810 | info@AlsopandWalker.co.uk | AlsopandWalker.co.uk Advert template.indd 9