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Ayrshire Food Hub set to open cafe and farm shop

The community-focused café and farm shop will celebrate the best of local producers.

Published: April 26, 2021

A new cafe and farm shop celebrating Ayrshire’s produce will be opening its doors this spring, as lockdown restrictions ease.

Ayrshire Food Hub will be home to a café, farm shop, training kitchen, event space and community garden, all with the aim of promoting the best of the area’s produce.

The Hub will look to engage with locals through classes and events based around the growing and preparation of tasty, nutritious food.

Progress on the site at Crossroads, outside Hurlford, had been halted during lockdown, but the team behind the project has been working hard to get the unique space ready for opening in the coming weeks.

Project Manager, Morag Cunningham-Blackley, said “Adaptability has been key throughout the changing of restrictions.

"Hand sanitising stations and screens have been put in place, with safety the absolute priority at the Hub. Our chef has also shown off his creativity by coming up with a menu specifically designed in a way that allows us to offer a takeaway

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“It’s these kinds of measures that will allow us to offer customers the fullest experience of the café and farm shop without any worries.

"We’re really excited to serve up some great food and show off our amazing stock.”

As well as using local produce in the café, a community-run farm shop will also be stocked with the best produce that the west has to offer.

Morag explained: “Ayrshire is home to some incredible produce, so it makes complete sense to buy close to home.

"We want to support small business owners and our own local economy.”

It’s not just local producers that Ayrshire Food Hub will be supporting.

The project was set up by Crossroads Community Hub – a development trust with social integration and the improvement of local amenities at the heart of its objectives.

Community work will continue alongside the running of the new Hub.

Trust Secretary, Mary Laidlaw, explained: “All profits from our farm shop and café will continue to fund the free community meals that we have provided in response to COVID, as well as our practical food and gardening activities for all ages, once they are allowed to restart.”

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The farm shop will open from 28 April, and the cafe will follow shortly after with a takeaway menu.

Known for cake making, experimental jam recipes, Champagne and gin drinking (and the inability to cook Gnocchi), Rosalind writes for The Scotsman on all things food and drink related.

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