FADNE CEO Chris Jewitt was invited to speak at The DEFRA Regional Food Summit at Edgbaston Stadium, Birmingham in March. Chris gave a presentation on the lessons FADNE have learnt in developing a Regional Food Group (RFG). Highlighting best practice and the vital role regional voices play in driving the food and drink Agenda across the UK.
Around 200 delegates including food & drink SMEs in England as well as regional food groups (RFGs) and other organisations with an interest in supporting regional and local food and drink. The event included workshops and networking aimed at highlighting opportunities for growth in the sector and sharing best practice. The Summit was aimed at helping to deliver the Government’s manifesto commitment to ensure that “people, both at home and abroad are lining up to buy British.”
The four focus areas for the day were:
Regional promotion initiatives – Understanding the benefits of developing a strong regional food and drink identity, to grow the local food economy and attract inward tourism.
Accessing public sector procurement – Looking at the different routes to accessing public sector procurement, including how SMEs can be part of the supply chain, and how this market is evolving.
New routes to market (Direct to Consumer) – Focussing on the growing opportunities for direct sales to consumers, and the benefits of shorter supply chains.
Building export capability – Examining the opportunities for SMEs in markets across the world, and how they can overcome barriers to exporting.