DERBYSHIRE food and drink producers relished the chance to showcase their quality wares to a VIP audience at the Palace of Westminster this week.
Members of Parliament from all parties and both houses sampled a tempting taste of some of the county’s finest culinary treats at a mini food and drink fair in London on Tuesday April 16.
Bakewell Pudding, High Peak reared meat, chocolate, ice cream and real ale were just some of the mouthwatering products on offer during a special Derbyshire Day organised by local MPs and supported by official tourist board Visit Peak District & Derbyshire and Derbyshire County Council.
The main aim of the event was to raise awareness of the county’s food and drink among key decision makers and to highlight the economic and environmental importance of supporting local producers.
It also marked the launch of the tourist board’s new Peak e-shop – a new on-line portal on its main website, www.visitpeakdistrict.com - to feature and promote some of the best Peak District products and experiences, including food and drink.
Products from two of the businesses that exhibited in London – Thornbridge Brewery and The Old Original Bakewell Pudding Shop – can now be ordered on-line via the Inspired by the Peak portal, and the tourist board is keen to encourage other local enterprises to follow suit.
“The mini food and drink fair gave Derbyshire producers a great opportunity to flag up their fine fare to some of the country’s most influential decision makers, and to underline the importance of buying local to support the area’s economy,” said David James, Chief Executive of Visit Peak District & Derbyshire.
“It also gave us the chance to highlight the superb variety of scenery, things to see and do and places to stay that make the Peak District such a fantastic place to visit for a short break or longer holiday.
“And our new Inspired by the Peak portal gives a wide spectrum of tourism-related businesses an all-year-round platform to sell their goods and services to a huge audience via our website, which attracts more than three million visits a year.”
As well as focusing on food and drink, the portal opens a virtual doorway to Peak Experiences such as cookery courses and walking adventures, Peak Arts & Crafts and Peak Images taken by some of the area’s leading photographers.
Businesses can book space by contacting the tourist board’s industry team on 01246 212924.
Local produce will also be the main item on the menu at the Derbyshire Food and Drink Fair, organised by Derbyshire County Council, at Elvaston Castle Country Park near Derby on Saturday May 18 and Sunday May 19.