Fresh from its most successful summer so far, the community produce shop Bùth Bharraigh has won a top award from the Scottish Rural Parliament as a Rural Innovator.
And the shop’s representatives will be among the winners attending the Scottish Rural Parliament 2016 in Brechin from Thursday to Saturday, 6-8 October.
And the shop is in line for two other major awards – the UK Rural Business Awards and the Highlands & Islands Food & Drink Awards.
There are more than 100 producers, including younger people in their 20s and 30s, involved with Bùth Bharraigh. They are mainly involved in crafts and knitwear but the organisers are hoping to encourage more vegetable produce development in future.
The shop was first set up in late 2013 in the premises of the former Scottish Cooperative store in Castlebay, now owned by Comhairle nan Eilean Siar. It is the only place on Barra where you can get such a wide range of local produce. Several businesses have grown on the island as a result of being able to sell through the outlet which earned more than £35,000 for local suppliers so far this year.
The aim of the UK Rural Business Awards is to give recognition to businesses operating right across the Rural sector. Businesses operating in the UK rural sector employ in excess of 3.4million people within over 600,000 businesses, and the sector is growing rapidly.
The 13 categories will be decided by an independent panel of judges drawn from the rural business sector; official agencies; and rural charitable organisations.
The Social Enterprise/Community Project of the Year category has as finalists Bùth Bharraigh Ltd; One the Square Limited; Locheilnet; The Russell Crowther Jones Foundation operating as VIP Companionship for Older People; The Dartington Hall Trust; amd Hill Holt Wood
The awards ceremony takes place on Thursday October 13 at The Belfry Resort and Spa in Wishaw, Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands.
Meannwhile in the Highlands and Islands Independent Food & Drink Retailer of the Year Award, Buth Bharraigh Ltd is competing as a finalist with All The Goodness; Buth Bheag; Corner on the Square; Oban Whisky & Fine Wines; and The Cheese House, Cromarty.
The Highlands & Islands Food & Drink Awards Dinner & Ceremony will take place at Kingsmills Hotel, Inverness on Friday 21st October.
The Awards complement the work of the Highlands and Islands Food & Drink Forum by encouraging food and drink businesses to be innovative, forward thinking and collaborative and by celebrating excellence and achievement.