Supporting local businesses has never been more important, especially with the year we’ve just had. One business that supports local producers and suppliers is Robinson’s Fresh Foods who work with a ton of Manx suppliers. We caught up with two local businesses that Robinson’s work with: The Fish Market ran by Jay Gore and Miles Pettit from Noa’s Bakehouse about Manx products.
The Fish Market
Robinson’s Fresh Foods have been selling fresh fish for over 20 years, and the brand has naturally progressed and grown- no doubt because they are excellent at what they do. About 10 years ago, Robinson’s took over Paddy’s Fish, and then launched their own brand ‘The Fish Market’.
The Fish Market focuses on all things seafood, from your basic rainbow trout to your 60kg halibut. The quality stems from catching the fish and putting them straight to ice- the fresher the fish, the better the quality. If you haven’t noticed, we’re surrounded by the sea: meaning that we are lucky to have some absolutely exceptional fish. It’s not just me who thinks it either- the fish has won best taste awards.
While making the most of our geography has a lot to do with the quality of the fish, the team of highly-skilled fishmongers are also worthy of credit. The Fish Market also owns the smokehouse, where processes which require a high level of skill are used in the traditional smoking method. The whole Fish Market team, headed up by Jay Gore, are dedicated to assuring the fish is as fresh as possible.
While many of us associate Christmas with turkey, a more European lunch of fish is quickly becoming popular. While swapping turkey for a piece of halibut might not be everyone’s cup of tea, The Fish Market is gearing up for selling the more traditional Christmas seafoods of prawns and smoked salmon. For a bit of extravagance, they also sell live and dressed lobsters, which are caught locally.
When Miles and Pippa Pettit opened Noa’s Bakehouse in 2013, there was no way they could anticipate it would become such a Manx staple. While they intended Noa’s to be a humble bakery on the coast, the Bakehouse has become a HUGE success, growing strength to strength. The business has grown so much that they are now employers of around 60 people on-island. This success is both because of the quality of the products, and support from businesses like Robinson’s who give support to the supplier to allow them to grow.
While we know and love Noa’s for their products, including their iconic sourdough loaves, the business is also an incredibly sustainable one. Noa’s have a fancy bespoke app that tells them exactly what has been sold at various outlets- and anything left is then used in the cafe, assuring nothing goes to waste. Even waste from the processes of baking are given to brewers to make beer- further demonstrating the collaborative environment taking place on the island. With ingredients being sourced from local farmers, the flour mill and creamery, Noa’s are assuring that food miles are impressively minimal.
When we think of shopping local, often the emphasis is on the benefits to the local economy. And while supporting our community is fantastic, Miles is quick to point out that supporting local shouldn’t be uncritical support because the product is Manx, but supporting because the products are genuinely better. The popularity of the Noa’s products undoubtedly demonstrate that this is the case.
As the weather gets colder, nothing could be more warming or comforting than the thought of thick soups with a side of sourdough. Noa’s will be producing Christmas classics such as mince pies and stolen, and are also promising a special, festive sourdough.
Supporting local is all about making the most of the incredible produce on the island. The passion that goes into these products are absolutely unparalleled, and the flavours, as a result, are phenomenal. With such delicious delights on our doorstep, it really makes us feel lucky to be Manx.
As part of the Don’t Let The Legs Fall Off, Support Local Campaign is in conjunction with Robinson’s Fresh Foods