East Lothian Farm is Scotland's Best
Knowes farm shop, near East Linton, has been named as one of the winners in Scotland's Best Rural Retailer Awards 2007.
The shop, owned and run by Peter and Hilary Cochran, was unveiled as winner in the Best Local Food Retailer category at a ceremony at the Scottish Parliament last night. The annual competition, organised by the Scottish Countryside Alliance, recognises the best rural businesses across the country.
According to the judges: "Knowes is so much more than a farm shop. Anyone who has visited knows it is an experience. The farming, egg production and shop are all part of one farming partnership. It is the food chain in miniature.
"Hilary and Peter grow and produce some of the finest eggs, potatoes, vegetables and herbs. Almost 90 varieties of veg is harvested daily and brought in directly from the field. Customers say that it is the range, smell and taste of this fresh produce, together with the personal service and the amount of information available that keeps them going back time after time.
"Knowes also provides a shop window for new local products and acts as ‘mother hen’ to many single start ups, offering a perfect market research forum and keeping their unit costs down.
"All local and other Scottish produce purchases are subject to a ‘trinity test’ of quality, provenance and traceability. When buying from a new source they like to see the farm or premises, meet the maker and to ask questions about the whole process."
SCA Chief Executive Tony Andrews said: "All the winners are a huge asset to their local communities and represent the best of Scotland's rural enterprise.
"Knowes must have received more nominations than anyone else over the three years of this competition, and rightly so. They are very worthy winners of the Best Local Food Retailer in Scotland."
Knowes Farm Shop will now go forward to the UK finals of the Best Rural Retailer competition with the winners being unveiled at a ceremony at the House of Lords early next year.