Award-winning Derbyshire farm shop Croots has boosted its range of local products by putting a selection of tasty new items from the county on its shelves after re-opening the store following lockdown.

At the same time, the shop has announced that its award-winning butchery is now almost plastic free. Croots has ditched plastic trays – where it can – and some 95% of everything that is sold pre-packed on the butchery counter is now in recyclable foil trays with the wrapping made from plant-based compostable film.

Croots Farm Shop, based just outside Duffield, is a strong supporter of local food and drink suppliers and has always stocked products from more than 40 producers from within a 50-mile radius of the store.

Now it has expanded its local range with even more products from Derbyshire – giving customers the opportunity to support their local food and drink producers.

The farm shop also pledged to make 2020 its most environmentally friendly year and has been introducing a range of improvements to reduce its impact on the environment. The latest initiative has centred on the butchery department, which the Croots team believes is one of the best butchers counters in the Midlands…with multiple awards to its name.

The butchery is also committed to local farmers and producers. The lamb it sells is supplied from grass-fed sheep reared just metres away on the farm, while Croots works closely with other local farmers to ensure the highest quality, traceable grass-fed beef, free-range pork and poultry is sold in the store.

“We’ve been reviewing all areas of our business to make Croots more environmentally friendly and have recently focused on our meat counters,” said Steve Croot, who runs the farm shop with wife Kay.

“We have now moved the bulk of our meat products out of plastic packaging and have replaced the plastic trays, where we can, with aluminium trays which are completely recyclable in the community recycling schemes. The great thing about them is that you can cook many of the products in the tray. The film we are using to overwrap them is biodegradable and can be composted or put in your normal bin and the manufacturers tell us it will break down within a year.”

Steve urged shoppers to support their local food and drink producers.

“We’re very fortunate to have so many excellent food and drink suppliers in Derbyshire and our neighbouring counties,” he said. “Croots prides itself on stocking some of the very best food and drink items that are produced locally, and we are delighted to have sourced additional new products from the county which we’re sure our customers will enjoy.

“Now more than ever before, it’s vital that we support our local food and drink suppliers.”

The new range includes mayonnaise, hollandaise and béarnaise sauces, plus balsamic vinegar and truffle oil from Brock & Morten based at Ashford in Water, Bakewell, along with Teresa Lambarelli’s pasta sauces, salad dressings and pesto, from Chesterfield.

Also new to the shelves at Croots are Granny Mary’s chicken liver pâté and potted beef, which are made in Chesterfield, plus curry spice mixes from Curry on Cooking, based in Derby.

For those with a sweet tooth, Croots is also stocking hand-made chocolates, honeycomb and truffles from Breedon on the Hill-based Bittersweet Chocolates.

Croots Farm Shop, at Farnah House Farm on Wirksworth Road, re-opened its doors to customers on 3rd July following the introduction of a number of measures to keep staff and customers safe. These include limiting the number of people in the farm shop at any one time, organising a one-way system in the store, which will be clearly signposted, creating clear social distancing markers, protective equipment for staff, the installation of hand sanitising stations at the entrance and exit, and implementing additional new cleaning procedures to regularly disinfect all surfaces and frequently touched points.

The shop is open for shopping from 10am to 4.30pm Monday to Saturday and from 10am to 4pm on Sundays.

The café at Croots Farm Shop remains shut in its usual format but Croots is working on a takeout option with a reduced menu which it hopes to have up and running for the end of July.

The click and collect option at Croots, launched during lockdown, will continue and runs with a 24-hour lead-in time for any orders placed up until 2pm the day before. Orders are taken online or over the phone. Opening hours for taking orders by phone are Monday to Sunday 8.30am to 4pm. Call 01332 843032 extension 5 and place an order over the phone with a member of the Croots team. Again, there is a 24-hour lead-in time for any orders placed up until 2pm the day before. Shopping is collected via the drive-through area in the car park at Croots Farm Shop.

Croots Farm Shop has won numerous awards for its products, and Steve Croot was named Derbyshire Local Food Hero 2014 at the Derbyshire Food and Drink Awards. In the 2016 Derbyshire Life Food and Drink Awards, Croots won the accolade of Outstanding Ambassador for Local Produce in Derbyshire, while in 2017, Croots won the People’s Choice in the Midlands Award in the Family United Business Awards.

For more information or to order online, visit Find Croots on Twitter @crootsfarm_shop or on Facebook

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