2 Dec 2012

Smokery opens near Nailsworth

Opening Smokery
Ruskin Mill College opened their new smokehouse and food processing facility on Friday afternoon. It was funded by the Local Food Fund - an application I supported at the time, so I was delighted to join the cutting of the ribbon by local resident 'Baker Boy' Tom Herbert (third from left in photo).

The Smokery is a wonderful purpose-built smokehouse and processing facility able to smoke and package for sale a range of fish, meat, game, vegetable and cheese products, including RMC home produced trout and pork - it offers to build on the already successful local food movement in the Stroud area - adding value to local produce is vital in sustaining the livelihoods of our local farmers, and helping new entrants into the agricultural industry. It will also benefit the students of Ruskin Mill College to gain a range of skills and experience in food related subjects. I hope to put a film together that I made at the opening....soon available on Stroud Community TV!

As one of the papers about it said, it will "provide educational, training and work opportunities for students, who have a keen interest in food. It will also offer a facility for local cheesemakers and other food producers; a potential venue for training on small scale smokehouses for outsiders to attend; possible shared co-operative use with other producers; and training and skill-share on food preservation for the local community."

Anyhow also there was Nick Beardsley and Christophe Coquoine (also pictured) who own The Cotswold Food Club - they are already working closely with their pub, Tipputs Inn, and Ruskin Mill to increase their already impressive local food range. Starting with a leaky roof in The Fleece at Rooksmoor in 1993, they added four Pub Restaurants to the chain. Great interviews with these two and lots of stories on Stroud's in Business on Stroud FM produced and presented by Terry Mechan can be heard at: http://podcasts.stroudfm.co.uk/index.php?id=1001

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