Top Produce from Tamar Fresh
As a large hotel with a busy calendar, using locally sourced produce is of the upmost importance. Each year, the hotel welcomes a number of Weddings, Corporate Events, Formal Lunches, Meetings, Conferences, School Proms and so many more. It is therefore important to use suppliers who can not only keep up with demand, but also provide sustainable, good quality ingredients. We chatted to David from Tamar Fresh, one of our wonderful suppliers to see why he loves working with The Duke.
When did you start Tamar Fresh?
My dad started the business 30 years ago as a retail farm shop. Dad had previously spent 25 years in the retail trade and as a result of his experience saw a gap in the market. At the time, Tamar fresh was the first farm shop in Cornwall, making it cutting edge for its time. As the business began to develop, myself and two brothers joined the business to keep up with demand.
What is the ethos behind the business?
It is very important for us to source local produce wherever possible. We source the best produce at the best price, ensuring that we provide fantastic value for money to our clients. Having been operating for over 30 years, we have always made a conscious choice to use local wherever possible, it seemed to happen naturally from the start.
Tell us about some of your products.
We source a variety of products including fruit, vegetables, dairy (cheese and eggs), dried products (pasta and rice). We also have a sandwich factory, where we produce the product on site. As well as this, we have two farm shops and two fish and chip shops. We currently have 150 staff in total.
Tell us about sustainability
We invest in local growers and support local businesses wherever possible which in turn helps to sustain them.
If you spend £1 at a supermarket, 70p of that leaves the local area. Whereas, if you spend £1 with a local business, only 40p leaves the area.
When did you first start supplying the hotel, how did that come about?
Tamar Fresh have been working with The Duke of Cornwall Hotel for over 16 years now. At this time, we bought a smaller company who were already working with the hotel and developed this relationship.
Tell us about when our team paid you a visit…
The chefs from The Duke are proactive and came to our premises. This enabled them to see new products and gain ideas to implement back at the hotel. Unfortunately, we do not have many companies that do this, however it is highly beneficial.
What is the most rewarding aspect of running the business?
There are many parts of the job that we find rewarding, however I think I have to say the fact that we receive positive feedback and very few complaints. I believe this says a lot about our business and means that we have achieved what we set out to. Customer satisfaction is at the heart of what we do, having the privilege to work with clients such as the Duke of Cornwall for a number of years whilst they continue to grow speaks volumes and is hugely rewarding.
Tell us why you like supplying the Duke of Cornwall Hotel?
The Duke is a beautiful, iconic building set in the heart of Plymouth, I am passionate about the city and its stunning architecture. We are very proud to be working with such a landmark hotel, with talented, experienced chefs. Kevin, the hotels head chef is hugely dedicated and has very high standards when it comes to produce. I feel that as The Duke has grown over the years, we too have as a business.
We think you can see why we have stuck with the team at Tamar Fresh for so long! We wanted to hear from Kevin Scargill, our talented Head Chef to find out all about our long-standing relationship with David and his team and why it is so important to him to use local suppliers.
What stood out about Tamar Fresh as a supplier?
Tamar fresh provide competitively priced, good quality produce with friendly service. We have a good relationship and they know exactly what we are looking for. As well as the products we currently stock, they keep us updated regarding new items that they think would work well for us.
Why do you love using Tamar Fresh?
Tamar Fresh source the very best produce from a wide range of suppliers. This provides us with high quality produce with the convenience of being delivered straight to our door.
What is the best product that they supply?
There are a variety of products that we love, however the jam they supply from Hogsbottom in Devon is a particular favourite amongst our guests. We serve Tea at the Top, an afternoon experience like no other in the hotel Tower. This requires the very best ingredients, making Hogsbottom a perfect choice, their products are made using the finest ingredients with no artificial colours. Tamar fresh also source from local growers including the hand harvested Asparagus from Wye Valley Produce in Herefordshire. It really is the best!
Why is it important to you to shop locally?
It is extremely important for us to use local ingredients wherever possible. Buying from local businesses in turn supports the greater economy, provides jobs, revenue and helps to increase the standard of living. We want to drive that economy forward and supporting local businesses is key.
Tell us about your trip to Tamar Fresh, why was it important for the team to visit?
It is good for the team to see where the produce comes from and the process it goes through to reach the hotel. Trips such as these are great to get our imagination going as well as provide us with ideas for new dishes.
Another member of our team joined Chef and his kitchen team and said their passion was incredible. They were so keen to get amongst the produce, find out more about it’s growers and provenance and were creating new dishes as they explored!
Thank you so much to David and Kevin for taking the time to talk to us. If you’d like to taste the dishes that Chef creates using Dave’s great produce, book a table in our AA Rosette award winning restaurant by calling 01752 275850. Our restaurant is open to everyone seven days a week from 7pm. We also offer pre-show suppers, take a look at the latest shows we are supporting here.