Farmer’s son finds big market for produce

FINE food retail brand Deli at..., which has attracted a loyal following in the past five years, is expanding into a second shop.

FINE food retail brand Deli at..., which has attracted a loyal following in the past five years, is expanding into a second shop.

Founder and owner David Urwin is expanding his brand, which offers a range of local and organic products from specialist suppliers in the region with the aim of providing fine food locally.

His original shop, Deli at Darras, has a strong local client base in Darras Hall and Ponteland as well as attracting visitors from across the North-East since it opened in 2002.

A second shop is due to open in Whitley Bay next month, creating eight jobs. There are also plans for a third shop next year.

The expansion has also prompted a rebrand.

David, a member of the Guild of Fine Food retailers, said “With Deli at Darras now well established, the time is right to expand and Whitley Bay is the perfect location.

“We already have customers who travel over to us from the coast and we have found great premises with a traditional feel to house our new shop.

“There are already high-quality independent shops based in Park View and I hope we will enhance the offering there even further, providing a quality high street to match the regeneration of the town.”

A farmer’s son from Northumberland, David is a graduate of Newcastle University and was a fresh-food sales manager for the North Eastern Co-op covering 150 stores from Berwick to Whitby before setting up on his own.

He said: “Today’s customer is very well informed and much more selective about where they shop. They are looking for something unique and a more personal approach.

“If we don’t have a particular item, we will try our hardest to source it. Many of our suppliers only supply to independent retailers and most of them are British companies.”

The business supports a number of local suppliers, including Northumbria Organic Meat, Moorhouse Farm, Doddington Dairy and the Northumberland Cheese Company.

With a focus on regional products, such as fresh meats, cheeses and breads, Deli at Whitley Bay will also stock carefully selected imports such as artisan olives, oils and vinegars. The shop will also offer freshly ground coffee and a healthy smoothie menu.

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