Lincolnshire Food & Gift Fair 2017
LINCOLNSHIRE Showground's annual festive Food & Gift Fair took place last weekend (2 and 3 December 2017) - and festive it was! The venue saw nearly 8,000 visitors through its gates across the two day event which was a celebration of all things Christmas, and all things Lincolnshire.
Amongst the beautiful crafts, the cheerful choirs, and even Mr Santa Claus himself, it was the huge range of fresh and delicious Lincolnshire produce that stole the show. Visitors came from within the county and beyond to stock up on everything from meats and cheeses, to mince pies and local tipples to prepare for a traditional, and undoubtedly very filling, Lincolnshire Christmas.
Of the 150-plus exhibitors at the Food & Gift Fair this year, over one-third were dedicated to showcasing the best that Lincolnshire has to offer for festive foodies. Many of these exhibitors return year after year, keen to capitalise on the ever-growing popularity of Lincolnshire's local food offerings.
Successful in satisfying the desire of visitors to take home local delights from the Showground was Lincolnshire Poacher Cheese. The artisan cheese company has this year seen its sixteenth successful year selling the iconic county cheese at the fair.
Tim Jones, owner of Lincolnshire Poacher Cheese said: "We have been coming to the Food & Gift Fair at the Showground since it started back in 2001. We love it because it is an event which really attracts loyal people and, whilst we sell a lot of our cheese outside of the county, we always love to come back to this fair which has Lincolnshire produce at its heart.
"The event is always successful for us because it is an opportunity to tell our story to visitors. Our cheese is made from milk from our own cows on a family run farm, and we believe that this is what people like about local produce _ it is authentic and unique."
New to the fair this year was Little Box of Lincolnshire, a Sleaford-based company founded on the very principle of celebrating what the county has to offer. Little Box of Lincolnshire fills its hampers with locally produced food and drink, and showcased three different hamper themes over the weekend _ 'Boozey Yellow Belly', 'Lincolnshire Treats' and 'Winter Warmer'.
Tim Gutteridge, owner of Little Box of Lincolnshire said: "The Food & Gift Fair provided a great opportunity for us to test the appetite in the market for hampers containing locally sourced Lincolnshire produce, and we were thrilled that people appeared to love the idea.
"The fair was the perfect place to showcase our products because, like our hampers, the event really celebrates Lincolnshire. We sold a number of hampers at the event, with our 'Winter Warmer' hamper being particularly popular for this festive season.
"We are also delighted to have had the opportunity to showcase our excellent local suppliers at an event which attracts visitors from far and wide. These businesses provide really high quality produce, yet often do not get the recognition they deserve on a national scale."
Something For Everyone Under One Roof
CEO of the Lincolnshire Showground Jayne Southall said: "We were delighted to welcome nearly 8,000 visitors to Lincolnshire Showground for the Food & Gift Fair this year. In addition, it was great to see such a vast range of exhibitors as this variety allows us to offer something for everyone under one roof.
"Being based in Lincolnshire, we are proud that each year we welcome so many exhibitors and visitors from within this county which has so much to offer. Most importantly, however, we hope that we have been able to provide a fun couple of days out and a great start to Christmas 2017 for visitors and exhibitors alike.
"From the wonderful exhibitors, the brilliant choirs, all those involved in Santa's Workshop for the little ones, the top-class cookery demonstrations and the delicious food on offer, to the visitors who came along, we wholeheartedly thank everyone who has supported us in making this year's Lincolnshire Food & Gift Fair a resounding success."