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Two businesses in Wychavon – The Potted Pantry and Word of Mouth Café – have become the latest food establishments to achieve the Healthier Choices Food Award Gold Standard.

The Healthier Choices Food Award scheme, which is run by Worcestershire Regulatory Services, recognises Worcestershire food businesses who offer healthier eating options for adults as well as children, with a gold award for those who also use local food suppliers.

The award is also only open to those businesses that have the highest possible five-star food hygiene rating.

The Potted Pantry, situated on Blackminster Business Park near Evesham, cooks meals produced in a traditional way, using locally sourced, fresh ingredients. Their menu of healthy, light lunches and smaller portions includes homemade soups, fishcakes and quiches with salad. Healthier breakfast options include smoked salmon and scrambled egg on toast or field mushrooms on toast.

Nicola Vardy, the co-owner of The Potted Pantry, said: “We listen to our customers and value their feedback. We have a constantly changing specials menu, offering seasonal as well as healthier eating options.  Everything we serve is homemade and prepared using locally sourced, fresh ingredients. We are proud of the standards we have achieved in our first 16 months of opening.”

Word of Mouth Café in Vine Street, Evesham, is a family owned and independent café that is passionate about using seasonal and locally grown and reared food, including fruit and vegetables from their own allotment.

Healthier option examples on their menu include homemade soups, seasonal mixed salads, homemade lentil and vegetable dhal, fruit and vegetable smoothies and beetroot falafels, and within the breakfast menu they offer scrambled and poached eggs and porridge. They also have menu options to suit a variety of different dietary requirements such as vegan and gluten free.

Louise Roberts, who is the joint owner of Word of Mouth Café, said: “We are really pleased to be recognised with the Healthier Choices Food Award. We enjoy the challenge of making food that everyone can enjoy, whether you suffer from food allergies, are vegan, vegetarian or just enjoy good homemade, wholesome food.”

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Councillor Gerry O’Donnell, who is responsible for promoting health improvement across the Wychavon district, said: “Healthy eating plays an important role in healthy lifestyles and a lifestyle that incorporates a healthy diet – as well as regular, moderate physical activity – will help us live longer and improve our quality of life. We’re proud that Wychavon has more than its fair share of fantastic food establishments such as The Potted Pantry and Word of Mouth Café and that they’re giving people in the district such a wonderful and tantalising choice when it comes to healthy, fresh and varied food choices.”

For full details of the Healthier Choices Food Award scheme go to www.worcsregservices.gov.uk/food.

Previous recipients from Wychavon of the Healthier Choices Food Award are Eckington Manor, Fusion Brasserie (Stoulton), Bridge Street Kitchen (Evesham) and The Angel Hotel (Pershore).

In the photos:

The Potted Pantry – the photo shows Julian Vardy, Nicola Vardy, Julie Rutherford (cook) and Steve Dickerson (chef).

Word of Mouth Café – the photo shows Louise Roberts and Charlotte Rose.