A key element in starting my new business is the Local Producers Market in Wallingford, Oxfordshire. This market started three years ago and has grown with over 30 different stall holders. The goal of the market is to provide an outlet for quality local produce, be that fresh vegetables, meat, food or crafts. The market has interested talented people who are committed to producing product that people want to by locally.
Celebrating the 3rd birthday this weekend the occasion was supported by the Mayor of Wallingford and the symbolic opening of the market, cutting a specially made cake, was performed by Angie Best.
The morning was very busy as I have been involved in setting the event up. I have acted as pr manager, marketing manager, website manager and with help I produced a booklet celebrating the market. I also had to prepare my own produce for my stall on the day. So I was extremely pleased with the success of the morning and the number of new faces we saw coming to the market.
The market is regularly held inside the Regal Centre and one of our new stall holders designed the decorations for the hall on the day. The effect was amazing. The comments from both stall holders and our customers was that the hall looked great and the atmosphere was just like a street market!
The effort that everyone involved with the market paid off and it was great to see the market looking bright and there was a buzz all morning. This celebration market 3 years but more importantly it marked the opportunity for the market looking forward.
For me the market has provided a great way to not only sell my food but also sell my business and it has generated a good number of catering engagements. On a wider point there has been a rise in the cost of food especially in the supermarkets. How much of that is generated by the cost of “food miles”, packaging and other issues is difficult to identify but I believe that local producers markets have a great future based on the talent of the people and the need to have access to quality local produce that has travelled the minimum miles and created with a greatly reduced impact on the environment. The bottom line is that a growing percentage of money spent locally stays locally, benefiting the local economy.
Make sure you take advantage of your local market!!!