An army marches on its stomach, as the saying goes. There’s no doubt truth in that for the army of frontline workers providing care and support during the pandemic – and for those receiving that support.

An army marches on its stomach, as the saying goes. There’s no doubt truth in that for the army of frontline workers providing care and support during the pandemic – and for those receiving that support.

And when an army needs refuelling, surely nothing hits the spot like a pie.

North Yorkshire pie maker Vale of Mowbray – one of the nearly 700 businesses to register on the County Council’s online Buy Local market place to link businesses with customers and help people to shop locally – are doing their bit.

During lockdown, like many businesses in North Yorkshire, Vale of Mowbray demonstrated agility and resourcefulness by adapting to serve its communities. The company is known for its pork pies, but the core business of wholesale meat delivery all but disappeared at the start of lockdown. The team quickly set up an online meat offer, and meatboxdeliveries.com was born. As well as their own quality meat, their range of food boxes includes produce from Yorkshire suppliers including Heck sausages, Wensleydale Creamery, Yorkshire Dale creamery and Jacksons bread, among others.

The firm has also been giving back to the community that supports it.

Marketing and Events Manager Jason Crowe said: “It’s an erratic time, so we have a bit of surplus sometimes. We thought we could utilise this.

“John Gatenby, our chairman, lives in Bedale where there are a number of care homes, so during the clap for carers on a Thursday night he took out pies to residents and some of the care homes around that area.

“We have several employees who have partners in the NHS, so we have sent them off with pies as well to take to their colleagues at James Cook and the Friarage Hospitals.

“We also connected with Fareshare (the UK charity dedicated to relieving food poverty and reducing food waste) so that when we had surplus we could give it to them.”

In April, the company provided 0.4 tonnes of food and contributed to 924 meals for Fareshare. These were distributed to food banks and other places where there was a need.

“They were very grateful,” said Jason, “and we have that relationship with them now and a system in place so that we know when we’re able we can donate to them. We’ve done that a few times so far and it’s good that we can continue that.”

At the same time, the company’s catering-style packs have been proving popular. As well as discovering these through meatboxdeliveries.com or Vale of Mowbray’s own website, people can check out the company’s entry on North Yorkshire Buy Local.

Jason would recommend any North Yorkshire business looking to the future to register on Buy Local.

“When there is free advertising you have got to take it, and with it coming through the council it is a reputable source, so people can rely on it,” he said. “I would strongly encourage people to register if they want to adapt or expand their business. They should get their name out there as much as they can, and if there are sources like Buy Local offering a free service then you can’t turn that down.”

Since the site’s launch in April, nearly 700 businesses have grabbed the opportunity to register. The marketplace is going from strength to strength and we’re urging businesses to register or update their details on the site as they re-open.

Any business can advertise free on the site – giving customers a wide range of local businesses, tradespeople and services all in one place.

Register your business today on Buy Local.

Support other local businesses – spread the word by sharing Buy Local with your business network.