LESS spoke to Rachel from Made in Lancashire to find out about the organisation’s great work in promoting locally produced food.
What does Made in Lancashire do?
“We are a food and drink member network made up of producers, hospitality and retailer businesses. Our ethos is: think, eat and buy local. We aim to reduce food miles and encourage people to shop locally. We also have an online directory as well”.
Made in Lancashire’s directory covers baked goods, beverages, confectionary, dairy, fresh fruit and veg, meat, prepared foods and preservative businesses.
Made in Lancashire has also been involved in ‘The Lancashire Cook Book’ by Meze Publishing, which features a number of local businesses in addition to many local and seasonally inspired recipes and stories. Visit madeinlancs.co.uk for more information.
Which businesses are involved?
“Made in Lancashire has around 70 members of all sizes – from small, one man businesses through to larger establishments. Quite a few of them are based in Lancaster, such as Atkinson’s Coffee and Countrystyle Meats Farm Shop & Kitchen, but they spread right across the county. Our offices are based at Myerscough College near Preston, and a lot of our work takes place online or over the phone – with the primary aim of supporting local businesses”.
When did Made in Lancashire start, and why?
“Made in Lancashire started in 2001 with the support of government funding. The organisation was initiated in response to the ‘Foot and Mouth’ crisis, and aimed to help farmers diversify and get back on their feet. A lot of meat farmers started expanding their businesses to include fresh food such as vegetables, drink and hospitality. Now the government funding is over, Made in Lancashire is run by the members, for the members”.
What is your key focus at the moment?
“Our key focus at the moment is making people more aware about where they can eat, drink, buy, and stay locally – to support local businesses in Lancashire. We want to help people understand that there’s a lot that Lancashire has to offer. Members also support one another – we’re like a little family”.
Made in Lancashire also offers members business and marketing support, access to the Made in Lancashire Brand on products (keep your eyes peeled for the red rose!) and discounted advertising opportunities on its website.
How can people find out more about Made in Lancashire?
“You can find out more about our work by visiting our website (madeinlancs.co.uk), by liking the ‘Made in Lancashire’ Facebook page, or by following @lovelancsfood on Twitter.”