You say potato, I say vodka
May 18, 2010 4:04 AM Subscribe
posted by MuffinMan (25 comments total)
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In March a little known potato vodka
made in the UK by a Herefordshire farmer, William Chase, won best in class at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition [warning: PDF]
. Chase was 20 when he bought his father’s 75-acre farm
, in 1984 with a £200,000 loan from the bank. This is his second venture: in his first, he bucked the trend and told supermarket giant Tesco to get lost
when they wanted to sell his potato chips
Chase is partly interesting because he's are rare success of a business that successfully fought back against supermarket dominance: he has said that he started to make potato chips after his margins as a potato farmer were virtually wiped out by supermarket demands for low prices.
But perhaps it is the same old, same old... Chase has sold his potato chip business to private equity
. Tyrells crisps are sold in Tesco's rivals. And underlying the ethos of some of the UK's best known "homespun" brands big business and private equity is increasingly getting into fresh and ethical food
, buying up Green and Blacks
, and Dorset Cereals
, amongst others.