Wales Co-operative Centre

Canolfan Cydweithredol Cymru

Customers get to choose at corner shop food tasting

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Siop-y-fro at Clawddnewydd, Denbighshire, is holding a tasting evening on October 29th where customers can sample local products already sold in the shop and also new produce from local suppliers.

The evening starts at 7.30 at Canolfan Cae Cymro, and if tasters decide they like any of the new products offered, the community-run Siop-y-fro can stock them.

Times may be hard for local businesses but Siop-y-fro is always looking for new ways to attract customers.

Amanda Brewer was one of the founding committee members determined to save a shop for the village about eight years ago.

She explained: “We hope people will come along to the tasting, which will be staffed mainly by our volunteers, taste the food and then complete a survey to say whether they think we should stock the item.

“It will also be a good opportunity for local producers to conduct market research. At the end we will have a very good database. We could perhaps take Christmas orders of items we could not necessarily stock in the shop. We were thinking we might even be able to do Christmas hampers.”

Amanda is hoping that by broadening the choice of produce it could attract customers from a wider catchment area, to include people who would not normally think of shopping at Siop-y-fro.

The event is being supported by Cadwyn Clwyd with funding from the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) through the Welsh Assembly Government’s Rural Development Plan and is part of a three-year plan to revitalise rural communities and their economies in the county.

Robert Price, Cadwyn Clwyd’s Denbighshire’s Agri-Food Project Officer, said: “The people of Clawddnewydd have shown real community spirit to support the Siop-y-fro and they also have a real commitment to stocking local food wherever possible.

“This area is a real storehouse of excellent produce and this is a great opportunity to showcase the quality that is available within Denbighshire and North East Wales.”

The shop does offer a free box delivery service to help particularly elderly and disabled customers and has secured a £5,000 a year contract from Denbighshire County Council to run the delivery service. It has also recently secured a grant to help pay the considerable insurance costs of its mobile kitchen which it can use for its own events or to hire out.

If you are thinking of taking on a similar project, or if your community group wants to take over an enterprise or building which will benefit the community, the Wales Co-operative Centre can offer a wide range of help and support.

Written by C Kenzie

October 14, 2010 at 8:20 am

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