Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting KNEWS to 80360, or email
Cafe puts home-grown food on menu
10:00am Monday 27th August 2012 in Keighley
A Keighley cafe is bartering goods with local food growers in order to widen its menu.
Gardeners and private allotment-holders can take fruit and vegetables to the cafe at Central Hall in Alice Street.
Cafe Central manager Tracey Thomas will swap the foodstuffs with food from her own stock instead of paying for them.
Tracey said everything she uses is sourced from local, mostly small, traders.
These include butchers, farmers, bakers and greengrocers in Cross Hills, Crossflatts, Beech-cliffe and Denholme.
Cafe Central is run by Keighley and Ilkley Voluntary and Community Action (KIVCA) which also manages the building.
Centre manager Matt Blackmore said that one of KIVCA’s objectives was to support local businesses. This included providing office space for social enterprises, hosting business advice sessions, and providing display space for artists.
Mr Blackmore said that buying locally for the cafe was a practical way of helping local traders increase their income.
He said: “We make a choice to support local businesses and producers even though it costs us a little bit more.
“It’s harder for us, but we don’t mind if it means businesses in Keighley thriving. We could get things a lot cheaper from wholesalers or supermarkets.”
Tracey took over Cafe Central after many years in the catering business. She started with a burger van and later ran the Doorstep Cafe in Haworth.
She said “backdoor bartering” avoided the need to pay tax because money did not change hands. However, food grown in council allotments cannot be used.
The latest visit was from someone with 10kg of carrots. “Everyone had carrot cake!”
Tracy wants to hear from local producers of all sizes, from home gardeners to dairy firms, who may have goods to sell.
The cafe is open weekdays from 9am to 2pm, and Saturdays from 9.30am to 2pm.