Driving Place Based Innovation podcast

5. Championing Local Supply Chains

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The fifth episode explains how championing local supply chains can benefit the tourism sector. You’ll learn about how collaboration, creating networks and building the appropriate infrastructure can raise awareness of SMEs and their quality product offerings. 

Destinations are only as good as the amalgamation of their local businesses. Investing in incubator programmes can help small companies grow and become more competitive in the marketplace. SMEs, and particularly family-owned businesses, must not be overlooked as they are the backbone of the tourism industry and provide authentic experiences to visitors.

In this episode we’ll be joined by:

  • lan Thomas, Director of Leisure Tourism and Research, NewcastleGateshead Initiative
  • Chris Jewitt, CEO, Food and Drink North East
  • Annakaisa Ojala, Digital Strategy and Development, Visit Finland

In this episode, we learn that cultural shifts are needed within organisations to enable them to be more agile and improve their ability to implement change management. This is especially crucial in times of global uncertainty; with rapid disruption to supply chains caused by COVID and Brexit. Deglobalisation and the desire for local suppliers has become increasingly important, adding value to visitor experiences and improving economic prosperity.

Championing local supply chains is founded on trust and creating opportunities for reciprocal trade. Businesses can create strong relationships and support each other in winning and delivering new contracts that they would otherwise be too small to compete for as single entities. Investing in supply chains is a long-term commitment, but despite the potential risks, there is an appetite for change.

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The podcast is part of the Hospitality Innovation Tourism Supply (HITS) programme which provides targeted support, learning resources and grant funding to businesses in Northumberland, Newcastle and North Tyneside to help make their ideas a reality. The programme is funded by North of Tyne Combined Authority and delivered by NewcastleGateshead Initiative, Food and Drink North East and NBSL.

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