THE Guild of Fine Food, organisers of Great Taste, Shop of the Year and the World Cheese Awards, is calling for consumers across the UK and Ireland to get behind their local independents. The Dorset-based Guild has added an online resource to its website, to assist retailers and producers following the government’s latest Covid-19 guidelines.
With supermarkets and national delivery services being the main beneficiaries of recent panic buying, the information hub is intended to help delis, grocers, farm shops and cheesemongers adapt to the new economic and social environment. As the supply of groceries continues to come under pressure during this period of social distancing, the Guild of Fine Food hopes that fast action from independents can position them as a big part of the solution and make it easy for consumers to support them during these challenging times.
Encouraging food and drink businesses to see the current situation as an opportunity, as well as a challenge, the Guild of Fine Food’s dedicated Covid-19 online resource will feature tailored information, advice and tips for the fine food trade, as well as good news stories to help inspire others in the sector.
Whether establishing a takeaway service, stocking household essentials, using unused produce to create frozen meals or collaborating with other local businesses, these stories can help to spark ideas to keep independents going at a time when the country needs them more than ever.
John Farrand, managing director of the Guild of Fine Food, explains: “As this unprecedented situation continues to unfold and huge change is forced upon us, we all have the opportunity to make an impact on the communities around us and to help shape what happens next.
“It saddens us deeply to see the suffering taking place at home and around the world, but our spirits have been lifted by the inspiring initiatives put in place by many of our members, pulling together and adapting their businesses to better serve the local community. This sudden change is already making us think differently about how we interact with the world around us and I hope we can come through the other side of this with a greater respect for our planet, our communities and our food.
“The challenges are everywhere, but it’s in all our interests to ensure that independent food retail is still here in a year’s time, so I’d encourage everyone to use the hashtag #supportlocal on social media to draw attention to the great things these businesses are doing. We hope that our new online resource will contribute to producers, retailers and consumers coming together for everyone’s benefit, and keep our vibrant independent food sector going strong.”