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Expo to Boost Regional Food and Drink Businesses

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Food and drink from north Wales will take centre stage at a new event designed to promote local produce to large-scale public sector catering services next month.

With sustainability high on the agenda Menter Môn and Welsh Government’s Food and Drink Wales division have joined forces to host Môn Larder Public Procurement Expo 2020. The event at Bangor University will target key buyers and influencers at local authorities, the NHS, colleges, universities, and other public sector organisations to highlight the benefits of sourcing locally produced food and drink.

The one-day expo will provide insight and information on current initiatives and policy drivers that support the case for shorter supply chains. And, by bring together buyers, decision makers and producers the event will showcase regional food and drink suitable for large-scale public procurement.

Martin Jardine, Director of Agri Food at Grŵp Llandrillo Menai is Chair of Môn Larder, he will give the opening address at the Expo.

He explained:

“We are excited to be hosting this public procurement event for the first time. We’ll be targeting those involved in buying food and drink in the public sector. It will give us a platform to showcase the fantastic products we have available here in Wales and to highlight how new technology is benefiting the sector. As a group we believe there are significant opportunities for the public sector as well as businesses from increased local procurement and shorter supply chains.”

Dafydd Gruffydd, is Managing Director of Menter Môn, he said:

“We want to connect suppliers across the region with buyers and decision makers, helping organisations understand what’s available to them locally when they source food and drink for large-scale public-sector catering. The benefits are clear, both in terms of social value through increased local spend, but also in promoting more sustainable buying practices. Menter Môn is all about adding value to the resources we have on our doorstep – through the Expo we can do just that.”

Speakers will include Andrew Martin of Welsh Government’s Food Division; Hannah Caswell from Food 4 Life, Eifiona Lane and Luke Prosser from Bangor University and a representative of the National Advisory Board for Dynamic Food Procurement will explore the social benefit of short supply chains; Sophie Coloquhoun will look at the value of Welshness and future trends; and Carol Nugent of Crown Commercial Services will discuss how technology can open up supply chains with dynamic purchasing systems.

Bangor University will also play a role, headed by Angela Church, the catering team will serve up a typical menu during the event using regionally sourced ingredients.

Môn Larder is a Menter Môn project. It was set up is 2019 as a local food and drink hub. It aims to bring regional producers and processors together from across north Wales, so that they are in a better position to respond to opportunities arising from major projects and public procurement requirements. By working with well-known experienced producers and processors from across the region the hope is that Môn Larder can help ensure the sector, through events like the Expo can thrive.