This month Lincolnshire’s historic Healing Manor Hotel and its 2 Rosette, family and dog friendly pub The Pig & Whistle, has launched its ‘Meet the Supplier’ campaign to showcase the families and faces behind the local food producers and businesses it works with.

There’s no denying the growing emphasis being placed on food chain accountability in our current climate, especially with the latest ‘Brexit deal’ updates never leaving the headlines. Even discounting today’s international political priorities, the consumer is growing more aware by the day of traceability within the food industry, holding businesses accountable for their choices.

For years, this exact issue has been of huge importance at Healing Manor – which today is spearheaded by Steven Bennet, also known as The Lincolnshire Chef, and his partner Charlotte Hay.  With a team of almost 60, the pair strive to source all of the ingredients locally and change menus to adapt to the ever-changing seasons. A feat which has seen strong relationships forged with myriad local suppliers, further solidifying the hotel’s ethos when it comes to provenance.

HM suppliersCharlotte says: “With food and running costs on the up, and Brexit on the horizon, it’s becoming increasingly important for businesses, both small and large, to take responsibility for the sustainability of their offerings and the supply chain behind the product on offer.

“I think it’s more preferent than ever, that as a business we take responsibility to educate our customers and share the story behind the products and dishes we serve. While people don’t necessarily want to know the full ins and outs of every aspect of the supply chain, our customers do like to know that the processes we’re taking to source our ingredients are fair and sustainable. The decision to work with small independent and local businesses does mean than on occasions certain products are more expensive to buy in, and get hold of, and this is why we’ve launched our ‘Meet the Supplier’ campaign. We want to shine a light on exactly how these dedicated businesses work, both with us and independently.”

To kick off the campaign, the duo has shared the story behind Coven Garden – their vegetable producer. Coven Garden, not to be mixed up with Covent Garden, is situated just outside the affluent town of Louth in the beautiful and quiet village of Covenham. Run by Graham, the business took root just over six years ago and Steven has relied on him ever since for quality produce.

HM Suppliers 2Coven Garden, which specialises in growing Lincolnshire vegetables, specialist herbs, micro herbs and edible plants, all started with the seed of an idea – to provide Graham’s two sons, Ben and Sam, with a job. Both autistic, Graham wanted to create an opportunity for Ben and Sam to earn a living and make use of the land they owned in Covenham.

Steve says: “A lot of the suppliers we work with at Healing Manor are people I’ve worked with for more than 20 years. Lincolnshire is one of the country’s biggest producers of food and this is something to be shouted about – there’s a reason it’s known as Britain’s larder. We’re so lucky to have so many independent growers and makers right here on our doorstep.”

As the campaign progresses suppliers featured will amass to 15 at least, and will include:

Stokes Tea & Coffee, Lincoln – A family-run business and Lincoln institution, Stokes’ has more than 100 years of knowledge and experience under its belt, some fascinating snippets of history and wonderfully innovative values.

Amy Jobe’s Lincoln Russet, South Elkington – Home to the most beautiful Lincoln Red cattle, pure bred and raised slowly outside to produce mouth-wateringly good beef with outstanding flavour, texture and appearance. The care and dedication, and value Amy places in her pedigree Lincoln Reds is truly inspiring.

Alfred Enderby, Grimsby – The award-winning producer of smoked fish, Alfred Enderby’s products are the very epitome of tradition. With skills passed down since the smokehouse was first recognisable in 1918, it’s no wonder chefs such as Marco Pierre White rate Alfred Enderby’s as the very best.