Our new funding is confirmed!

3 March 2019

EXCITING NEWS - Shetland Food and Drink Limited (SFAD) has successfully secured over £60,000 of funding, effectively allowing the organisation to continue over the next 18 months. This funding for a second fixed-term project follows closely after the completion of a very successful launch project for Shetland Food and Drink. Read the official press release below....

Shetland Food and Drink Limited (SFAD) has successfully secured over £60,000 of funding allowing the organisation to continue over the next 18 months. This funding for a second fixed-term project follows closely after the completion of a very successful launch project for Shetland Food and Drink.

This new 18-month project is supported by primary funders Shetland LEADER and Shetland Islands Council, with sponsorship funding and SFAD’s own funds completing the funding package. The funding package, totalling £61,176.97, comprises: £30,588.47 from LEADER; £25,000.00 from Shetland Islands Council; and £5,588.50 from sponsorship and SFAD’s own funds.

SFAD’s very successful launch project ran from Aug 2017 to Feb 19. It was funded by Shetland LEADE, Shetland Islands Council and Highland & Islands Enterprise. Taking the organisation from its small beginnings, it saw SFAD make a major impact on the promotion of Shetland’s food and drink. Following the recruitment of a Manager and Assistant Manager, many achievements followed with the funding enabling SFAD to: grow membership levels to over 60 members across Shetland; create and launch www.tasteofshetland.com; bring a host of donors and sponsors on board; launch and grow its online shop; organise the Taste of Shetland Festivals 2017 and 2018; take Shetland food and drink producers to the Taste of Grampian show and the Speciality Food Show for the first time; create and launch the Up Helly Aa Food Market (now in its second year); create and launch bairns’ cooking initiative Peerie Bites; further grow the profile of the Taste of Shetland Cooking Challenge; design and organise, in conjunction with Highlands and Islands Enterprise, Sales Workshops for members; and create, organise, launch and run the very successful Taste of Shetland Pop-up which ran in Lerwick last summer.

Marian Armitage, Chair of Shetland Food and Drink, says: "SFAD was set up to promote Shetland’s local produce both in and outwith the Isles. In addition to events and initiatives, we have also raised the profile of Shetland’s local produce. We’ve generated a range of publicity, from widespread press in Shetland to BBC Radio 4's Food Programme and forthcoming features in Delicious and Country Living magazines. Our email bulletins are sent right across the globe and our booming social media feeds drive more and more interest in Shetland’s food and drink and Shetland generally. Following our launch in November 2017, we set out to achieve as much as we can for our members and for the sector, and I am confident we have done just that.

“This next fixed-term project - the next phase of Shetland Food and Drink’s growth - means we can continue our work at home, helping to grow the local market for Shetland produce, as well as increasing our presence and our members’ presence outwith Shetland. We now have a member-ratified strategy which is driving our planning. In the next 18 months our activities will include further marketing and PR, including having high profile journalists visit Shetland; creating print materials to promote SFAD to the cruise ship market and attending more shows outside of Shetland. This is all designed to enhance and create opportunities to promote our members and the work they do. This new tranche of funding also means we are advertising two new fixed-term contracts for the Manager and Assistant Manager roles and we are looking forward to a wide range of applications.”

Jill Franklin, who was Manager for the first launch project, and one of the co-creators of the organisation, has announced that she will not be reapplying for a second term as Manager.

“I am incredibly proud of what we have achieved in a relatively short space of time,” says Jill Franklin. “We wouldn't be where we are without the tremendous amount of encouragement we have received. I have loved the role and am very proud of what has been achieved but am unable to reapply due to personal reasons. I'm sure the next Manager will also achieve great things with everyone's continued support.”

In addition to having the role of Manager, Jill Franklin also worked as a volunteer prior to setting up SFAD. She was one of the main organisers of the Food Fair in 2015, the year it split from the Craft Fair, and also was the co-organiser, again as a volunteer, of the second Food Fair in 2016 (before it became the Taste of Shetland Food Festival in 2017). She also attended, in a voluntary capacity, on a learning journey to Scotland to help work out the feasibility of SFAD, in advance of putting everything in place - from the legal structure to membership structure - prior to the launch of the organisation. She applied for the role of Manager and took up the post in August 2017

Marian Armitage, Chair of Shetland Food and Drink, adds: "We have been very fortunate to have benefitted from Jill’s incredibly driven and committed work. She has led Shetland Food and Drink to achieve wide recognition and high regard throughout Shetland and beyond. I want to thank Jill for everything she has done to bring us where we are today. She has played a key role in the development of the group. Without such effort, I don’t believe the organisation would be where it is now.

“We are really looking forward to the next phase in SFAD’s growth. We know that we have generated a wide range of benefits - from economic benefits to profile-raising - for our members and for Shetland, so are keen to see what we can achieve in the next 18 months.”

The details of the roles being advertised as part of this project are here.


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