Tenants wanted at Cornish North Barton Artisan Food Village
The owners of Cornish Charcuterie are looking for at least four more small producers to join them in their growing North Barton Artisan Food Village near Bude before the end of 2018, either as tenants or business partners.
Richard Harding, who owns Norton Barton Farm with wife Fionagh, said a bakery, craft brewer and a chocolatier were among producers that could fit well alongside businesses already operating from the farm.
Since setting up Cornish Charcuterie in converted barns at the farm in 2011, three new start-ups – North Coast Cider, savoury biscuit maker Popti and new start-up Cornish Distillery Co – have been established at North Barton. The Hardings have a share in each firm and co-operate with their co-owners on marketing and distribution.
“We have found a model that seems to work,” said Richard Harding, “which is partnering with someone who has a very good idea but needs help to get it to market.
“We help with NPD and with the business side and put in some capital to get them off the ground, and in return we take an equity stake.”
The couple also rent space to cheesemaker Sue Proudfoot of Whalesborough Cheese.
North Barton Farm was awarded Food Enterprise Zone status in 2015 – one of more than a dozen sites around England given Government backing to develop the local food and drink economy.
The Hardings aim to develop a range of facilities including small, short-term rental units, larger production units, offices, visitor accommodation and even a greenhouse for fresh produce. Last summer they were granted a Local Development Order to ease the planning process.
Richard Harding said they hoped to fill two new units of up to 150 sq m during 2017, and two more next year. “Not every company needs to have Fionagh and me involved on an equity basis,” he added, “but we hope they will all buy into combining sales and distribution.”