Foodies and businesses made for an attractive mix at the launch of a food tourism scheme in Pulborough on Monday.
The ‘Food Detectives’ initiative aims to give visitors to the South Downs information on where they can find the best local produce during their stay.
An announcement came as part of the South Downs Food & Drink Spring Event at Hepworths Brewery, where more than 100 food and drink businesses took the opportunity to show off their best.
Rundeet Sirah from Jah Jyot in Southwater was one of those cooking samples on the day.
He said: “Businesses with Sussex products coming together has really helped all of us start working towards making Sussex the place to go as a foodie destination.
“I’m really pleased to have been part of this.”
Guests enjoyed tasting food and drink from more than 30 producers from locations across the National Park and Andy Hepworth also gave brewery tours of the Hepworths’ site.
Thirteen-year-old Evan Hutcheon was helping serve up meaty tasters from Lancing College farm, where his dad works as manager.
He said: “I’ve always wanted to be a farmer. It shows me what I have to do to be what I want to become and what a business is and how to work that business around what everyone else does.”
The free Food Detectives service is being run by the Natural Partnerships Community Interest Company (CIC).
It is hoped joining the dots between businesses and where they source their breakfasts will help boost trade and increase consumer confidence in the area.
Hilary Knight, co-director of Natural Partnerships CIC, said the tool would encourage visitors who were looking for that unique food experience while on holiday.
She said: “Our product will help hospitality businesses by giving them the opportunity to quickly and easily show people enquiring about booking just what a great foodie experience they can have while they’re here – and so help encourage them to confirm bookings and have a better holiday.”
The project is a simple technical tool attached to the Southdownsfood.org online local food directory, which features the best food shops, places to eat and events where people can eat, buy and enjoy local produce.
To get involved, contact firstname.lastname@example.org