Local food producers were given the opportunity to showcase their produce during a ‘Meet the Buyer’ event held at Ballycastle Marina.
Grow Local, GO GLOBAL is a business support programme provided by the Councils of Ballymoney, Coleraine, Limavady and Moyle. It is part-funded by Invest Northern Ireland and the European Regional Development Fund under the Sustainable Competitiveness Programme for Northern Ireland.
Organised as part of Business in the Community’s Grow Local, GO GLOBAL initiative and sponsored by the Henderson Group, these small to medium-sized organisations from the local food sector had the opportunity to pitch their produce to the buyers during a unique pitching session. Paula McIntyre, resident chef on BBC Radio Ulster’s weekly Saturday Magazine recipe spot provided a demonstration of local produce, putting her renowned cooking skills into practice by serving lunch for everyone.
Business in the Community’s North West Manager, Sarah Quinn, explains: “The Grow Local, GO GLOBAL initiative provides a huge opportunity for local enterprises to access valuable information and advice that they may not otherwise have had. Although the event was organised in a fun way, it was really encouraging to see such talent and innovative ideas within our local community. I look forward to seeing the outcomes of this event and how it will help these small food producers develop.”
Ruairidh Morrison from North Coast Smokehouse, an organisation that took part in the day, was really pleased with the outcome of the event saying: “What a great way to do business - a great location, a fantastic chef preparing and presenting some of the best food in the country, and the company of other fine food producers and buyers. It was fantastic to see our products being expertly showcased alongside other delicious locally produced foods. I was able to start conversations with a range of buyers and I’m sure these will lead to increased sales.
“As well as having the opportunity to talk to potential buyers, I enjoyed meeting other producers and discussing possible future collaborations. Many thanks to Business in the Community and the Henderson Group for bringing everyone together for a very valuable and enjoyable occasion.”
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