A campaign to help people buy local Sussex produce has been launched in Horsham District and wider West Sussex, with local shops, restaurants, pubs and cafes pledging to serve and sell more food and drink made in Sussex.
The Sussex Six team were at Horsham Market this weekend, handing out goodies, inviting people to enter a foodie competition and local dance school Upbeat Dance Co. performed a surprise flashmob. Sussex Six will also be at Steyning Market on 7th October, Henfield Market on 8th October, and Billingshurst Market on 15thOctober.
The Sussex Six Campaign already has 34 businesses signed up and will run for two years, highlighting details on the Sussex Six pages of Sussexfoodanddrink.org, an online directory for food and drink across Sussex.
Horsham District Council Cabinet Member for the Local Economy and Place, Cllr Ruth Fletcher, said: “We’ve got lots of producers who concentrate on really high- quality produce, and on the sustainability of what they produce, so if you buy local food and drink, you’re keeping the money in the local economy and helping reduce your food miles.
“In Sussex we’re known for having a wide variety of producers, and the food really does taste great. We’ve created the Sussex Six campaign to help people find local producers so you can eat and buy local”.
At a food and drink business event in 2022, held at Wiston Wine Estate and Chalk Restaurant, Nick Hempleman, founder of the Sussex Produce Company, sparked the idea for the campaign.
He said, “If businesses added just six local products to their menus or shop shelves, it would keep thousands of pounds in our local community and boost our local food and drink producers.”
Farmer Andrew Knowle, from Trenchmore Farm, said, “We work with local pubs and restaurants here in Sussex. We find for them, having a local producer is actually first choice. Their customers often ask them, where does your beef come from? And they want to know it’s a local product. Also for the chefs themselves, there’s an added advantage, which is they get a consistency of supply.”
The campaign has been introduced to local food and drink businesses since at events hosted by Kinsbrook Vineyard and Hepworth & Co Brewery, and the sign up has been enthusiastic.
“We are delighted with the response of local food and drink businesses and have a range of fantastic businesses to showcase who has made the Sussex Six pledge to sell and serve more local produce,” said Hilary Knight, from Natural Partnerships CIC, organisers of the campaign for Horsham District Council, with support from the Government’s Shared Prosperity Fund.
“Visit the Sussex Six pages of Sussexfoodanddrink.org to find the fantastic places where you can shop for and eat local produce.”
Participating businesses in Sussex include: Artelesi, Brolly Brewing, Butterbox Farm, Chalk Restaurant at Wiston Estate, Crates, East Beach Café, Firebird Brewing Co Shop, Handcross Butchers, Hepworth and Co Brewery Shop, Horsham Brewing Company Shop, Kinsbrook Farm Shop, Kinsbrook Vineyard Café, Roundabout Hotel, Rassasay Farm Shop & Deli, Rushfields Farm Shop, Springs Smokeries Shop, Swains Farm Shop, The Artisan Bakehouse, The Cheese Hut, The Crabtree, The Crown Inn in Hastings, The Gorilla Kitchen, The Hungry Guest Café and Shop, The Shepherd and Dog, The Snug, The Sussex Grocer, Tottington Manor Hotel, Kissingate Brewery Taproom, Shelleys Budgens, The Blue Ship, The Shelley Arms, South Brockwells Farm Shop, Woodfire Camping,
To find out more and support the campaign, people can visit the Sussex Six pages of Sussexfoodanddrink.org
Businesses wishing to join the campaign can also see details on the business page under Sussex Six.