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Co-op extends its local sourcing programme following the success of the Yorkshire pilot

MANCHESTER, England, 2017-Jul-19 — /EPR Retail News/ — Yorkshire breweries are set to tap into estimated annual sales of more than 500,000 pints at the Co-op as the community retailer extends its local sourcing programme.

A total of 23 Yorkshire breweries now supply the Co-op as part of the scheme which was piloted in the county in 2015.

The programme is now rolling-out UK-wide following the success of the Yorkshire pilot, with locally sourced produce introduced into counties including: Lancashire; Cheshire; Cornwall; Devon; Wales; Avon and Somerset.

UK-wide the Co-op aims to double the number of its smaller, local suppliers, through a programme designed to champion local produce and break down the traditional trading barriers that smaller businesses can often face.

Luke Raven, Director of the Ilkley Brewing Co – which supplies its Mary Jane; Pale Ale and Rombald beers to the Co-op, said:
“We’re incredibly proud of the brewing heritage of our beautiful region. Co-op have long been champions of local producers, and it’s great to see Yorkshire beer given such exposure – our own beer sales have rocketed in Co-op stores this year, with over 50,000 bottles expected to be sold by the year end, accounting for approximately 10% of Co-op’s sales of Yorkshire beers is an incredibly proud achievement for such a small brewery as ourselves.”

Leeds Brewery – which marks its tenth anniversary this month and operates a 40 barrel brewery in the city – supplies the Co-op with two of its award-winning brews: Yorkshire Gold, a light hoppy beer and, Leeds Best – its traditional best bitter.

Ed Sunter, Regional Sales Manager for Leeds Brewery – who last week joined the Co-op team at the Great Yorkshire Show, said:
“We take great pride in producing our beers and we are pleased to work with the Co-op which shares our passion for quality, locally produced products. We are often asked where our beers can be bought – the Co-op’s community orientated approach provides a great route to market, helping us to reach customers in areas where their local pub may not be selling our beers.”

In addition to beer, more than 150 local Yorkshire lines are supplied to the community retailer, including: eggs; milk; bread; ice cream; sweets; crisps; potatoes; pickles and chutney; pies; sausages and beer.

Supplying its homemade pork products and sausages to the Co-op, Director of Todmorden-based Porcus, Sarah Jane Clegg, added:
“When our area was hit by severe flooding in December 2015 we were really up against it. We spoke to the Co-op and explained the dire circumstances we were in. They listened, and in order to help, they rolled out our products into a number of their other stores in the area, which was fantastic. It felt easy to approach them, it felt natural. This relationship is continuing to blossom and we’ve already increased the range we supply which is great.”

Charlotte Bleasdale, Ranging Manager for the Co-op in Yorkshire, explained:
“Our ambition UK-wide is to double the number of our local suppliers. From potatoes to pickles, and pies to pints, we now stock over 150 local lines across our 250 Yorkshire stores. Our approach sets out clear principles to foster closer relationships and support for local suppliers – we want these businesses to thrive and so we do not seek exclusivity for instance. It is the innovation, traditions, quality and passion of the producers which makes for prized local products, and we are delighted to give them pride of place in our stores.

“We know that food provenance really matters to our customers. Quality, trust and value are key for consumers. Backing local produce is about much more than just ‘hanging out the bunting’ – Yorkshire food and drink is world-renowned and the Co-op is committed to investing in its local communities, providing opportunities to showcase, support and celebrate great Yorkshire food and drink.”

Media Contact:

Andrew Torr
Co-op Press Office
M: 07702 505 551

Source: Co-op

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