The Cooks of Country Markets

For more than 90 years, many thousands of cooks have been making delicious, wholesome, homemade food in their kitchens and selling it in Markets all over the country. Now, in an exciting new initiative, The Cooks of Country Markets are selling their products in local community stores, village and farm shops and garden centres.

Demand for homemade food has grown enormously in response to the increasing interest in real food, made by real people in real places. The Cooks of Country Markets preserve, bake and make products in their own home kitchens to sell within their local communities.

If you are a budding or experienced cook, this is an opportunity to make an additional income, perhaps around family or other commitments, support the traditional Country Market and create some wonderful homemade food for shoppers in your local area.

› Are you a budding cook and want to use your skills? Click here to find out more about joining us.



Our Co-operative

For those same 90 years plus, a network of about 400 Country Markets across England, Wales and the Channel Islands has been selling homemade baked goods, preserves, garden-grown fruit and vegetables, plants and handmade crafts. Visitors can buy a variety of produce - almost anything local and seasonal that can be produced in a domestic kitchen or garden. Alongside our homemade goods, many Country Markets also sell meat, fish and dairy goods, honey and eggs from local producers. Country Markets are held weekly in a variety of venues in cities, towns and villages and Marketeers also participate in Farmers’ Markets, town markets, county agricultural and specialist food shows. Our Cooks pride themselves on keeping traditional dishes alive, as well as producing the latest fashionable food.

Producers are Members in this co-operative social enterprise, which is organised into Societies each registered under the Industrial and Provident Societies Act. Membership is open to anyone over the age of 16; the cost of joining is just 5p – the modern equivalent of an old shilling. Everything is sold co-operatively; producers receive payment at the end of the month for their sales, minus a small commission to cover running costs and insurance.

Country Markets aim to encourage the public to discover the diversity and deliciousness of local British food and producers pride themselves on the quality of their produce and the friendliness of their Markets, many of which have become popular, lively meeting places.


About The Cooks of Country Markets


Making Local Food Work

Country Markets has been part of the Making Local Food Work Project, a £10 million Big Lottery Funded programme focused on promoting community enterprise as a solution to local food needs;it aims to reconnect consumers to the land by increasing access to fresh, healthy local food.

The project achieved its goal to put in place a range of approximately 650 successful, viable, resilient, locally controlled and principled local food enterprises throughout England over five years, which actively contribute social, economic, and environmental benefits to the communities they serve and help to address the challenges of food access and food security.

The programme vision is to secure the long term future of thriving communities that are strongly connected with land, that understand where their food comes from and are empowered to respond to their own food needs using community-led solutions.

Local food matters; it connects people to the land. It creates opportunities for farmers to provide food directly to their customers and helps communities to build skills, trading systems, networks and resilience. Local food can also have many benefits for the local economy, community regeneration, health and the environment.

The Making Local Food Work project has provided a fantastic opportunity to ensure the sustainability of Country Markets Limited for all our existing Members – and many new Members – well into the future.

Country Markets has worked with several other project partners:

  • The Plunkett Foundation
  • National Farmers Retail and Markets Association (FARMA)
  • Alliance for Better Food and Farming (Sustain)
  • Campaign to Protect Rural England
  • Soil Association and Co-operatives UK

About The Cooks of Country Markets

About The Cooks of Country Markets


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