Latest statistics have revealed that a monthly speciality food and drink market brings up to 10 per cent more visitors to the heart of a city.

Regional food organisation East Midlands Fine Foods has been running a regular Regional and Speciality Food and Drink Market in the Old Market Square, Nottingham, since April 2007 in conjunction with Nottingham City Council.

The market is the chance for producers and suppliers of food and drink from across the East Midlands to sell direct to the public, and has built up a loyal following of customers.

Now statistics have revealed that footfall to the Old Market Square goes up by between 7 and 10 per cent on market days, representing an extra 3,000 to 5,000 visitors to the city centre.

“The positive relationship between East Midlands Fine Foods and Nottingham City Council has helped to create a vibrant and popular monthly market which attracts visitors to the heart of the city,” said Councillor David Trimble, portfolio holder for leisure, culture and customers at Nottingham City Council.

“The Regional and Speciality Food and Drink Market has been a great asset to Nottingham, and very much welcomed by shoppers, which is reflected in our latest statistics on visitor numbers to the Old Market Square.”

As well as the Nottingham market, which takes place on the third Friday and Saturday of each month, East Midlands Fine Foods organises a number of speciality food and drink markets across the region at specific events, such as the Burghley Game and Country Fair near Stamford.

The Nottingham event features around 30 stalls from Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Lincolnshire, Leicestershire, Northamptonshire and Rutland selling a wide variety of produce, including meat, cheese, condiments, cakes, fruit and vegetables, ethnic snacks and other items.

“Speciality food markets continue to be very popular with shoppers,” said Briony Clarke, operations manager of business support organisation The Food and Drink Forum, which runs East Midlands Fine Foods.

“Our members and associated stall holders produce some of the finest regional and speciality food and drink from across the East Midlands, and we’re delighted to see that this monthly event in Nottingham city centre is such a draw for the public.

“As one of the largest food and drink organisations in the region, we have links to a wide variety of food and drink producers, so between us and the council we’ve been able to run a successful regular event.”

East Midlands Fine Foods provides a range of focused support and assistance to small and medium-sized speciality food and drink producers in the region, including regular exhibiting and selling opportunities. It is based at Southglade Food Park, Nottingham.