Be a part of Taste North East Wales 2020

Explore. Experience. Eat.

Taste North East Wales was established in 2019 as an exciting local food celebration involving a programme of unique food & drink-based experiences running throughout the month of October. Over 30 businesses were involved and over 400 people attended the events. Some were small & intimate events with just 8 – 10 people attending, others much larger. Some were simple farm tours & others sophisticated dining experiences. We had an effective media campaign with 135,000 unique Facebook users, 11,000 Eventbrite page views, press coverage & website blogging.

Change of plans for 2020

While our “bigger and better” plans for this year are postponed until next year, we are instead planning three virtual activities through which we hope to support and celebrate food and drink businesses across the region during this difficult time, ensuring that local residents and visitors can Explore, Experience and Eat the best local food and drink that North East Wales has to offer despite the restrictions. We’re not out the woods yet, but we want to help you position your business as best we can as the situation evolves over the summer.

Below are the 3 areas of activity with examples. The examples are not exhaustive and we welcome other suggestions. We are planning to link a number of businesses within each story so if you have partner businesses please let us know. We also plan to coordinate our work with the #CaruCymruCaruBlas / #LoveWalesLoveTaste campaign.

1. Valuing local planning for local within the new normal

This will be a series of stories, told through short films and promoted through traditional and social media about “Valuing Local” food & drink businesses, emphasising how much businesses stepped up during lockdown to support their communities, and encouraging people to actively plan how to shop local as we come out of lockdown. While there may be a “Use them or Lose them” underlying message, the emphasis will be on encouraging people to proactively plan how to shop locally. The target audience will be primarily local people.

Has your business stepped up to support your local community during lockdown? For example, maybe:

  • Your high street food shop has started or rapidly expanded home deliveries
  • Your business has stepped up production/delivery to meet the increase in demand
  • Your business has developed a new business model e.g. you’ve converted from a restaurant to takeaway, or a pub to community shop
  • Your business has rapidly increased stock to meet greater demand & stocked more/other local producers
  • Your business has changed its sales approach to meet need, temporarily/longer-term
  • Your business has changed how you operate to keep local people safe.

2.    A warm & safe welcome

This will be a series of short films, promoted through traditional and social media around the theme of “A Warm & Safe Welcome” emphasising how the region’s towns, food, drink and hospitality businesses have prepared to welcome customers and visitors back safely. The target audience will be local people who we will be encouraging to revisit their favourite local pubs & restaurants but also potential visitors to the area to support the food, drink & tourism sectors.

How is your business preparing to reopen and welcome customers in a safe way? E.g:

  • Hospitality businesses preparing for and implementing social distancing precautions
  • Accommodation providers actively promoting local food and drink
  • Links between local food and drink and activity opportunities
  • Community shops continuing lockdown services
  • High streets taking social distancing precautions to support local traders.

3.    Virtual interactive events

Virtual interactive events profiling local food, drink and hospitality businesses, coordinated to complement the Llangollen Food Festival and other regional virtual events. We are looking to do 5 exciting interactive events, for example:

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  • Production tour with questions & answers
  • Restaurant tour to show social distancing measures – front & back of house, with a cookery demonstration
  • Interactive tasting event with samples sent out in advance.

If you’ve been building your live filming skills during lockdown, and/or have an idea for an interactive virtual experience, we’d love to hear from you!

What’s in it for you?

This is a great opportunity to showcase your business across North East Wales and beyond, getting recognition for the hard work you have done over the past three months. Some businesses are reporting that there is already a downturn in orders as people return to supermarkets and we want to help you keep your business in people’s minds.

Our professional film makers will include your business in one of our Taste North East Wales Stories helping to raise your business profile and potentially help you meet new customers and drive more business. Our marketing & PR team will then work with you to bring the stories to as many potential customers as possible. Being part of our branded programme links your business name with others who are also working to develop the region as a Food & Drink destination.

Get Involved?

1. Let us know that you’re interested by no later than 19 July 2020

Email us at taste.blas@gmail.com with a short outline of the extra efforts your business went to during lockdown, your plans for the future or ideas for an interactive event.

Please also provide your name, your business name & address, and contact details.

2. We’ll get in touch to discuss your story and arrange a (distanced) visit

We’ll aim to feature as many local businesses as possible but will need to be selective to ensure the stories & events are punchy and effective. If selected, a member of the team will call you to confirm details of the story and arrange a time to do some (distanced) filming of you, your business in action and hopefully some of your customers.

3. We’ll keep you in touch with the virtual Taste North East Wales 2020

As stories and footage come in, we will work with our marketing and PR team members to confirm the most effective way to communicate the messages for maximum coverage via social and traditional media. We anticipate this will include some combination of the following:

  • Release of short video clips around key themes & messages
  • Infographics reinforcing key themes and messages
  • Interviews with local radio stations and magazines
  • Newspaper articles

We’ll provide details of the marketing plan and how your business will feature ahead of launch as well as information on how to maximise coverage for your business.

4. Together we’ll promote the stories & your business

Marketing & promotion will be a partnership between you & Taste North East Wales.

We will promote the stories & events through our website, PR work and social media channels including paid for advertising, and support our partners to do the same.

But we know that promotion works best if your businesses also gets involved and does its own marketing, for example by sharing posts on Facebook and via other social media, printing and sharing the infographic posters to display locally, writing a short blog post to explain the story behind your involvement. This maximises exposure for your business and all those participating. We can provide support with all of this if you’re unsure and will be offering a specific support workshop in July.

5. Bask in the recognition

It has not been an easy few months and we’re not out the woods yet… but your customers, new and old, will at least understand some of what its been like for you and re-commit to supporting your business.

Who is behind Taste North East Wales?

2019 and 2020 are pilot years and are being supported by Cadwyn Clwyd, the Clwydian Range & Dee Valley AONB and the 3 North Wales Local Authorities, Flintshire, Denbighshire and Wrexham. The programme is being developed to achieve sustainability beyond the pilot period.

Clwydian Range Food & Drink and Llangollen & Dee Valley Food & Drink have been appointed to coordinate the programme and have formed the Taste Team made up of Robyn Lovelock, Janet Monshin Dallolio and Jane Clough with support from Radar Communications and Be Social for PR & Marketing and from Eastwood Media for filming & photography.

For more on Taste North East Wales or if you have a story for the team, email taste.blas@gmail.com or visit the website: www.tastenortheastwales.org

For more information on Cadwyn Clwyd, email admin@cadwynclwyd.co.uk, call 01490 340500 or visit the website: www.cadwynclwyd.co.uk

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