A growing membership and strong activity was welcomed at the 2017 Food from Fife AGM, as new Chair Will Docker was elected.
Will Docker is the founder of St Andrews’ successful Balgove Larder Farm Shop, Butchery, Café & Steak Barn. As a longstanding member of Food from Fife’s board, he has previously been the organisation’s treasurer. He replaces John Whitehead, OBE in the role. John will retain his connection with Food from Fife as an ordinary board member.
Activity ranging from training and networking events to marketing work promoting individual member businesses and Fife’s wider food and food tourism industry has taken place since the organisation’s last AGM helping membership grow by 15% in the last six months. Such work will be increased and driven forward by newly elected chair, Will Docker.
John Whitehead said:
“The last three years have been a period of change for Food from Fife. The organisation is now financially stable and becoming known for driving forward activity to encourage Fife’s food and drink industry to grow and thrive. I believe that it is the right time for me to step down from the Chair because I know that Will will continue to develop the organisation to the benefit of members, bringing his invaluable experience to the table.”
With a background in biomedical sciences, Will Docker’s experience has included work in the kitchens of London’s famous Bibendum restaurant, cheffing in the Arctic Circle on a Russian salmon river and running a company that supplied top London restaurants with live shellfish. In 2010 he opened Balgove Larder outside St Andrews as a way of showcasing and celebrating the best of local produce. The business has since expanded significantly, now employing over 60 people.
“I’m delighted and honoured to take over the chairmanship of Food from Fife from John. His work has been vital in transforming the organisation and I look forward to driving the network forward, successfully supporting our growing membership and Fife’s food & drink and food tourism industries.
“Our membership incorporates such a broad spectrum of the food and drink industry in Fife and this has allowed for a huge variety of activity. This is something I’m looking forward to developing and I’d welcome feedback from our members on this.”
Food from Fife is a not for profit company that was established in 2010 to help the diverse local food and tourism businesses work better together to grow the overall industry in Fife.
The AGM took place on 30 June 2017 at the newly refurbished Old Course Hotel. It was well attended by members, ranging from hotels, guesthouses and restaurants to colleges, food festivals, farm shops and food & drink producers, enjoying networking and local food in the hotel and golf resort’s beautiful orangery.
Coordinator, Martha Bryce, presented a report of activity undertaken since Food from Fife’s last AGM in August 2016. This has included the opportunity for members to attend a variety of training and networking events across Fife, activity (including familiarisation trips) aimed at encouraging food & drink producers to work more closely with hospitality businesses and overall promotion of the area and individual member businesses.
The organisation’s activities have taken place right across Fife and have included increased activity in working with organisations like Cruise Forth to develop food tourism in the area.
In April, Food from Fife together with Fife Council reprinted the Fife Food Map, highlighting food and drink businesses to visit. Member businesses have also been given the opportunity to visit nationwide trade shows on a part-funded basis through the Learning Journeys scheme.
Find out more about Food from Fife and its member businesses at www.foodfromfife.co.uk. Businesses interested in attending should contact Food from Fife’s coordinator, Martha Bryce on email@example.com.