This was the fledgling year for the team and I think they put on a pretty good event.
The booking process was clear and easy to use, the option to book taster fitness classes and expert speaker sessions straightforward. Unfortunately, I was very late to book and so the fitness sessions had all been filled up, but that’s my own fault for leaving it till the last minute.
If the weather had been kinder the location would have been brilliant, I’ve not been to this part of Digbeth before and it reminded me of the Neighbourgoods Market in Cape Town when I arrived. It’s set in an old mill area, really picturesque and the stall’s all looked great. Sadly, the weather was nothing like Cape Town and I think it was particularly harsh for the first week in September, this is obviously nothing the organisers can control, and they did put a few heaters out to try and counter the chill.
I had a lovely time meeting the suppliers, lots of people who are interested in health and wellness so we all had a common passion. I made some purchases, tried some samples and picked up lots of cards.
My favourites included:
LifeBox Food, they are an independent company with a great back story from their founder Jenny, their stand was well laid out and they were doing a great show offer so of course I had to take advantage of that. I’ve already tried one of their snacks from my bag and it was really tasty. I’m also going to order a vegan one for my niece to try, I had a good chat with them on the stall about which one would be best for her and they had a discount offer included in the show pack too! They had a cute little area on their stand where you could make up your own breakfast pot and then insta it (of course) and everyone seemed to be walking around with one of their bags so I’m hopeful that they will have picked up a few new clients from their time in Birmingham! I also like their mission, that they try to source products from the UK, and last but not least they give back to the community and their supported charity is Trekstock.
Primal Joy, another fabulous independent business. I bought some snack bars from them with the intention of sharing with hubby, but I’ve already eaten one of the Fig and Orange bars and I’m not sure I can bear to part with the other one. They taste seriously indulgent, great with a cup of coffee and apparently super tasty warmed up with cream….check out my Instagram to see!
Borough Broth. The lovely ladies on the stand had hot broth to taste and their beefy broth reminded me of coming home on a wintry day after school to a tasty cup of (insert well know beefy drink here). I do make my own chicken and beef broth, but not anymore, I’m going to order from these and then stash them in my freezer for drinks, soups and sauces. They do a great range of meat, organic pantry items and fish, which means I can place a nice big order and reduce shipping costs too.
Natural Healthy Foods, I shall be visiting their shop near the Mailbox in the next few weeks, and I’ll surely be partaking in some goodies from their vegan café too. They share my shop local passion and source many of their products from small local independent suppliers. I also love their pre-packaged boxes which are a great idea if you are newly vegan or struggle to source vegan foods, I particularly like their Vegan Student Survival Kit, not just for students it’s a great all-round kit for stocking up for example when you return from holiday.
And last but definitely not least is the lovely Tom from Vegetropolis, what a great name for starters! I bought some (not local) Avocados from him, his stall was full of lovely veg and fruit, all origins clearly labelled. He delivers to the wider Birmingham area on a weekly basis, all you need to do is spend £10. Unfortunately, Lichfield is out of his area, but I’m making it my mission to get him some more customers in Sutton, so please click his link and sign up and support local heroes like him.
So, what are my requests for 2018? I would have liked to see more local suppliers, lots of the companies had travelled quite a way to get to us. There were lots of vegan and vegetarian suppliers, but unfortunately a distinct lack of mindful meat suppliers, there are lots of them out there and many of us who care about what we eat are Committed Carnivores so we need to see more happy meat and dairy suppliers. Oh, and if possible some better weather please!