More than 40 local producers from across the region showcased their wares at the Local Produce Show 2023 and enjoyed meeting buyers from the Central South.

Opening the show, Leigh-Sara Timberlake, Group CEO of Business South, said: “We are in our 15th year – and I must admit this is one of my favourite events of the year. I never cease to be amazed by the breadth of delicious products being created on our doorstep and we are delighted to help to promote producers to buyers from businesses and organisations across the Central South.

“The original idea for the show was to showcase local produce for the cruise sector and we were very successful in enabling businesses to build business relationships that resulted in their products being served on cruise ships around the world.

“It soon became clear there was a bigger opportunity to promote the amazing local products to a wider audience and we opened up the show to buyers from the hospitality industry, major employers and others.

“As well as championing the move to buy local, we have been able to use this popular event to shine a spotlight on major issues.

“Coming out of Covid, we have all been made aware of the skills shortage in the hospitality industry and our chefs’ panels have highlighted best practice and ideas for others to adopt.”

This year’s chefs’ panel featured major names from the hospitality industry:

  • Andrew Gault Executive Head Chef Balmer Lawn hotel, Brockenhurst
  • Steve Lewis GM, Lainston House Hotel, Winchester
  • Luke Matthews Executive Head Chef, Chewton Glen Hotel, New Milton
  • Gordon Stott, Head Chef Proprietor, The Purefoy Arms
  • Yvonne Hamlett, Executive Head Chef, The Tichborne Arms
  • Simon Hartnett, Executive Chef, The Queens Hotel Southsea
  • Luke Holder, Executive Head Chef, Limewood hotel
  • Jamie Holmes, Executive Head Chef, Hilton at the Ageas Bowl
  • Jacob Rowley, Head Chef, Oakley Hall
  • Matt Whitfield, Executive Chef, Ideal Collection

Topics covered included sustainability, rising food costs and talent resources.

Guests visiting the show, were greeted by a giant inflatable elephant (quite literally the elephant in the room).

It was the eye-catching resource of the Burnt Chef charity which works tirelessly to promote the issues of mental health in the hospitality industry and founder Kris Hall led a workshop for industry professionals.

See below video highlights from the Local Produce Trade Show 2023:


Local Produce Trade Show 2023 Photo gallery: