Tenbury fruit gin company's growth from kitchen project to nationwide player (From Ludlow Advertiser)
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Tenbury fruit gin company's growth from kitchen project to nationwide player
THE damson blossoms that are now at their best in the Teme Valley are good for a Tenbury business.
For 12 years Colin and Phyllis Hingston who live at Newham Bridge have been using fruits to make refreshing gin drinks.
What started as a cottage industry is has now grown and they are producing 18,000 litres a year, which is sold all over the UK.
Next step is to try and break into the overseas markets to capitalise on success that has seen the Tipsy Fruit Gin Company nominated for a Heart of England Fine Foods awards.
The couple have their office and administration centre at their home farm in Newham Bridge but also have a production and bottling facility at Kyrewood.
“We sell at selected outlets such as farm shops all over the country but you will never see our drinks in a supermarket outlet,” said Colin.
“Some of the fruit we grow and some we buy from growers in Herefordshire.”
He said that the business is a regular exhibitor at the LudlowFood Festival.
The fruit liquors are based on an old family recipe dating from 1848.
In the production process only whole fruit is used with no concentrates.
The maturing process takes a minimum of three months.
Colin and Phyllis produce seven flavours, Damson, Raspberry, Cherry, Blackcurrant, Sloe, Seville orange and a Lime Vodka.
“Harvesting of the fruit is in late summer depending on the weather and some of the fruit is frozen,” said Colin.
“Our best time of the year for sales is in the run up to Christmas.”
**A TOTAL of four local businesses have been announced as finalists in this year’s Heart of England Fine Foods Diamond Awards.
The awards celebrate the best of local food and drink from across the region.
The categories are: alcoholic drinks; bakery and confectionery; condiments and preserves; dairy; desserts; fresh meat, poultry and game; prepared foods; prepared meats; and soft drinks.
In addtion to Tipsy Fruit Gins, the other local finalists are: Hobsons Brewery, Cleobury Mortimer, for Postman's Knock; Shropshire Country Oils, Church Stretton, for its apple balsamic and wholegrain mustard; Van Doesburgs Gourmet Food Shop, Church Stretton, in the best retailer category.
The winners will be announced on May 12 at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole.