With Kent’s food and drinks industry growing rapidly and tourism numbers expected to be higher than ever, Kent food tourism initiative Kent Food Trails is pulling together the best of both and launching two new bite-sized guides ‘Hops and Beers’ and ‘Apples, Ciders & Juices’ this month.
Curated by Produced in Kent, the two new bite-sized guides are available from the intuitive website; kentfoodtrails.co.uk, which is fast becoming a favourite resource for visitors and locals to create their own food and drinks trails or experience a curated readymade trail. The ‘Hops and Beers’ and ‘Apples, Ciders & Juices’ come with physical guides which can also be picked up from stops on the Kent Food Trails or downloaded from the website.
No longer the UK’s best kept secret, Kent’s food and drinks industry is now contributing around £2.6bn to the UK economy each year, which is nearly a tenth of the whole UK food and drink industry revenue at £28.8bn*. Kent’s visitor economy has increased by 7% topping £3.8billion after a record 65million visitors in 2018; the county remains the third most visited destination outside London for visitors from abroad.
“We wanted to bring together the fierce pride we have for our county and very real passion of our producers and farmers. The Kent Food Trails are designed to encourage everyone – visitors and locals alike – to discover new places and taste new flavours. There are so many wonderful food and drinks producers scattered all over Kent, there is something for everyone.”
Comments Stephanie Durling, Manager of Produced in Kent.
“Kent’s renowned brewing and hop growing heritage influences the flourishing breweries in Kent today. Some have benefitted from the county’s flourishing wine industry, with a number of wineries producing their own beers and ciders, like Chapel Down’s Curious Brew and Biddenden Vineyards’ new sparkling cider “Biddies” which sits alongside their traditional still cider range.”
“We’ve observed a real shift in the way people drink beer and cider in Kent over the last few years. There’s less emphasis on the imported lagers and mass-produced ciders and we’re seeing more innovation and experimentation with growing interest and sales of the artisanal drinks. There has been a rise in the different types of brew like Kent’s first low-alcohol beer from Gadds’ and an ever increasing free-from range including vegan and gluten-free beers, like Following the Herd 4.5%ABV from Old Dairy Brewery.
“Kent cider makers are seeing the opportunity for cider to stand proudly alongside or instead of wine on a fine dining table with single varietal and blended Estate Craft Ciders from Charrington’s, which are best served chilled in a sparkling wine glass.”
Kent’s food and drink scene is trail-blazing in the UK. The food tourism initiative, Kent Food Trails, has been designed to gather and condense information, recommendations and history into easy bite-sized chunks for Kent’s increasing numbers of foodie visitors. Once your appetite is whet you can head to the website www.kentfoodtrails.co.uk and find out how to make your own food experience trails or take one that’s already been lovingly curated. With details on places to taste, try and buy, places to stay, plus cafes, bars, pubs and restaurants to keep you going. Add in a walk or cycle trail, stop for a picnic and enjoy the amazing countryside, so visitors and locals can make the most of the Garden of England.
The organisation wants to inspire visitors and locals alike with Kent’s amazing food and drink. From products created and grown here for hundreds of years to 21st century innovations, food and drink has shaped the landscape of our wonderful county and we hope you enjoy exploring all it has to offer.
~ ends ~
For more information or images please contact AJ Sharp on firstname.lastname@example.org or 07973387216
Produced in Kent is a trade organisation dedicated to supporting & promoting food, drink, products and services in Kent. It provides vital support to a diverse range of businesses which in turn provide valuable employment opportunities in Kent, at the economic heart of the community. www.producedinkent.co.uk (consumer)
www.kentfoodtrails.co.uk (Kent food trails)