AN artisan food supplier based in the North Tyne has seen demand for its products sky rocket over lockdown.

Northumbrian Pantry, which is based in Simonburn, has been trading well despite the challenges presented by the coronavirus pandemic.

It is becoming well-known for its handmade jam, chutneys, and relishes.

At the end of last year, the company was providing products to four retail outlets, but that has now rocketed to 33 shops.

The company is run by Alice and David Murray, and the pair have carefully selected ingredients which were either handpicked seasonally from the orchards and wild hedgerows of the North Tyne Valley, or sourced from trusted local suppliers and markets.

David explained why he felt the company had been successful.

He said: “Our brand is very representing of the county, and because of this we have had a very positive demand in the past few months.

“In fact, because of our locally focused branding, we have had far more retail outlets approach us then the other way round.

“It is proof of how important it is to people. Our production cannot keep up with the demand for locally produced quality recipes

“We’ve just won a prestigious Great Taste Award for our Chilli Relish.”

The company also put their resources to good use at the start of lockdown, helping out those in need.

David added: “Much of our early coronavirus period was spent volunteering, doing deliveries that were gifted by the local author LJ Ross - who has donated considerably to the local community through Corbridge Larder.”

Northumbrian Pantry is also part of Northumberland County Council’s Produced in Northumberland scheme, which promotes great food and drink that has been locally sourced and produced.

And David didn't feel the demand the company had experienced over recent months was set to slow up any time soon.

A range of festive stocking fillers, including Christmas edition chutney, a spiced apricot and orange chutney, chilli relish, and figgy pudding jam amongst others proved popular last year.

He continued: “We are predicting a very busy and positive festive period as orders pour in already. People are certainly gearing up for online and hampers already.

“We could not even imagine that we would be where we are now.

“We’ve gone from four retail outlets at the end of last year to 33 shops now, including Hertfordshire, Scotland, Yorkshire and County Durham.”