COMMUNITY leaders have hailed a new social enterprise on Portland helping to promote local food.

Portland Pride, aimed at showcasing products made on the island and surrounding area, has opened in Fortuneswell and had a great response from the community.

All products on sale are sourced within 30 miles and include local bread, cakes, pies, pickles and jams. Producers who want to get involved are encouraged to contact the shop.

The shop will be complimented by an e-commerce site and a support package for existing and new producers. It will also engage residents in food-based social activities, workshops and training opportunities.

It is all designed to enhance knowledge of and a relationship with local food.

As a social enterprise, all profits will be fed back into the community, contributing towards a range of other island-wide projects.

Mayor of Portland Sylvia Bradley, who cut the ribbon and declared the shop open, said: “Portland Pride is a very welcome and much needed addition to the island.

“Not only will it make it easier for the community to buy our wonderful local produce, it will also contribute towards the regeneration of Fortuneswell. I hope this is just the start of greater things to come.”

The venture has been supported by the Chalk and Cheese Local Action Group with additional funding from Synergy Housing’s Portland Neighbourhood Panel.

Director of Portland Pride Kim Wilcocks said: “Portland Pride will celebrate the island and the fantastic range of products made and sourced there.

“The brand and support package will enable us to work with producers in order to maximise the impact of their goods in the market place. We also want to promote the benefits of buying local, not just for the individual but for the local community and economy as a whole.”

Shop manager John Hockaday, wants to encourage new producers and the wider community to get involved.

He said: “If there is anyone with the seed of an idea, please pop into the shop and we will help you grow it.”

To support the shop contact 01305 824682.