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Marketing workshops for food and drink businesses

Wednesday, 9 January 2019

Food and drink businesses are invited to sign up for marketing workshops being run this March by the Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture (DEFA).

The workshops are delivered as part of the Government’s food business development strategy, ‘Food Matters’.

Geoffrey Boot MHK, Minister for Environment, Food and Agriculture, said:

‘Whether it’s a new business or one already established, marketing is an essential business tool for any organisation that is looking to grow and prosper. These workshops will expose businesses of any size to a range of marketing tips and techniques, all designed to promote growth and profitability.

‘A competitive food and drink industry is critically important in ensuring the continuing diversification of the Island’s economy. That’s why the marketing workshops welcome representatives from all areas of the industry. That includes farmers, retailers, specialists, artisans and restaurants. In fact, anyone who wants to understand marketing and how it can help their business.’

Workshops take place over four consecutive Thursday evenings – 7, 14, 21 and 28 March 2019, 7pm to 9pm, at DEFA’s headquarters, Thie Slieau Whallian, Foxdale Road, St Johns.

They will be delivered by Heather Blackley, a marketing specialist who has 30 years’ experience working with businesses on and off the Isle of Man, including the food and drink industry. This will be the 12th year of running these workshops.

Financial support from DEFA towards the costs of the course mean participants will only need to pay £30 per session.

Previous participants have rated the workshops highly and commented on their value in developing their enterprises. 

One of these is Rachel Ranson from Ballakelly Farm. She said:

‘Before my Ballakelly adventure there was always a marketing team where I worked; a word I had heard but never really understood what it meant until I attended this course.

‘It really helped us focus on what marketing we already did, to look at what was working and what was not. Most importantly, we realised that successful marketing could cost peanuts but attract more than monkeys!’

To inquire about or book places on the workshops, contact Lucy Verdon, DEFA Marketing Executive, at or +44 1624 687520, or complete the application form at by 31 January 2019.

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