At a seminar in Exeter co-hosted by regional food group South West Food & Drink and the Food & Drink Federation, Rachel Turner, Sainsbury trade development manager for Wales and the south-west, said: “This will be our eighth supplier development programme and our third with SWFD. The aim is to get all 15 of our meat and fish counters in Somerset, Devon and Cornwall stores selling locally sourced meat and fish.”
The initiative will kick off next week, involving six suppliers from the south-west and five from Wales.
Lord Haskins, who also spoke at the seminar said local suppliers had real strengths over larger manufacturers.
They could offer better service and availability because of their proximity to retailers and willingness to make small deliveries, he said.
“The biggest challenge is consistently producing food of the same standards as larger manufacturers.
“And the technology and finance is now available for small businesses.”