Optimism is once again in the air at Bradford Market declares local butcher Stuart Smith, who along with his dad, John, own and run the long-established and highly regarded market hall stalwart, J Hutchinson Butchers.
With the easing of the lockdown restrictions, people are once again returning to the market, though as yet, with shoppers still exercising a note of coronavirus caution, not in the pre-lockdown numbers.
Nevertheless, Stuart is delighted to be able to welcome back loyal customers into the market as well as clients such as pubs and restaurants.
Not that those customers have been strangers over the past couple of months, with many taking advantage of the J Hutchinson website to continue ordering their weekend roast and mid-week cuts. When the lockdown was announced customers visiting the market more or less disappeared overnight, having a detrimental impact on J Hutchinson and other market-based businesses.
Prior to the lockdown Stuart and John had been using Facebook to take orders, but as online business increased, the amount of time needed to administer the system was taking up to two hours a day and becoming impractical.
Stuart turned to the T&As Japinder Aujley, who advised the Smiths on the best way forward in establishing a more efficient e-commerce site through which to sell their products, and jhutchinsonbutchers.co.uk went live on June 8. Six weeks later Stuart is delighted with the way the site is working.
“I reckon 50 to 60 per cent of the orders we have received have been from new customers,” said Stuart. “Having the website as broadened our customer base, and we are delivering to Burnley, Ilkley and Holmfirth as well as throughout Bradford.”
All of the meat available at J Hutchinson is sourced within a 40-mile radius, the best produce from the best farms in the area, which ensures you are getting high quality meat every time you choose to shop at J Hutchinson.
Claims of high-quality produce are no idle boasts, either, J Hutchinson are proud to be a part of the Quality Assured Scheme for Beef and Lamb, while all the poultry they sell comes under the Red Tractor Assurance guarantee – which recognises that food has been produced to the highest quality throughout the food chain.
“People can order online, place an order over the telephone or email us. This allows the customer the freedom to make an order in the way which best suits them.”
J Hutchinson, United 218 Oastler Shopping Centre, Bradford
Phone: 01274 726957
As well as expanding their customer base and providing a vital income stream during the lockdown, having placed their orders once, this new customer base is returning, time and time again.
“The repeat business has been a major factor in the website’s success,” said Stuart.
The proof of the pudding, as they say, is in the eating, with J Hutchinson sourcing their meat from local farms.