The provenance of their potatoes can give crisp producers a key edge over the opposition these days, says the managing director of Yorkshire Crisps, Tony Bishop

Many of our customers – and the public who shop with them – are becoming increasingly interested in locally produced, traceable food with high-quality natural ingredients. This means more questions being asked about the ingredients and provenance of the standard, multinational crisp brands. People are starting to understand the importance of supporting local producers to reduce food miles, support the regional economy and ensuring they eat food made from quality ingredients.

At Yorkshire Crisps we hand-cook our crisps in small batches using only pure sunflower oil and completely natural ingredients. MSG, artificial flavourings, nature identicals, colourings, preservatives or genetically modified ingredients do not appear in our crisps. Our Chardonnay Wine Vinegar flavour is exactly that. The wine vinegar is actually spray-dried into a powder that is drizzled on to the crisps within seconds of them leaving the fryer, giving consumers the full flavour of the product. Transparent packaging means the product stands out on the shelf and the crisps are clearly visible. We want to show that we have nothing to hide.

We’re very proud to be located in Yorkshire, which has a well-earned reputation of earthy credibility that has helped our business thrive: 90% of our raw materials are sourced locally, from potatoes to packaging; we also look to work with regional suppliers wherever possible. For example, our main crop, Hermes potatoes, is delivered to the factory by tractor and trailer from the farm five miles away. Using local manufacturers has helped reduce our environmental impact.

We are very selective about whom we supply. Our reputation is judged on where our crisps are available and we would rather be associated with reputable establishments. Our business plan is based on maintaining our integrity and not compromising on quality. Our crisps have received numerous awards, resulting in prestigious accounts with the likes of Fortnum & Mason, Harrods, Harvey Nichols and The Ritz.

Having successfully dried Henderson’s Yorkshire Sauce, we are now launching it as a new, totally Yorkshire flavour. We consider it superior to Worcester Sauce and there has been huge interest within the county and beyond. The new flavour has also helped us to promote the region as an area known for its quality produce, ingredients and brands. We hope to help continue this education of the public.