THE first part of a report looking at how to meet more of the needs of Tavistock and the local area through local supply chains is now available to view, with the full report due out in autumn.

The Tavistock and District Local Economic Blueprint, led by Transition Tavistock with support from local public, business and community stakeholders, looks at how much money is spent on food and energy in the area, how much benefit this brings to the local economy and what steps might be needed to have more spent through local supply chains.

The first part of the report, focusing on food and drink, can be seen online and highlights that residents get most of their food from large companies rather than local producers.

It claims more than £80-million a year is spent on food and drink in the area and £47-million is spent on shopping for home consumption, mainly through a few supermarkets.

Kate Royston, on behalf of the Tavistock and District Local Economic Blueprint team, said: ‘Food choices affect our health, environment and economy.

‘In our study area there are hundreds of food businesses, from farms to restaurants, providing around 3,000 jobs.

‘We estimate over £80-million a year is spent on food and drink by people living in or visiting the Tavistock area.

‘Despite our heritage of food production, most of this now goes to large companies with national and international supply chains rather than regional or local supply chains.

‘A marginal shift in the overall pattern could therefore retain significant funds in the local economy.’

The full blueprint, which will also cover how energy is produced and used, will be published in early autumn.