Panther Brewery shortlisted for prestigious rural business award

Reepham’s Panther Brewery has been shortlisted for the Rural Business Awards.

The company was nominated by the co-founders of the awards, who believed that, from their research, it met the criteria for the best rural food or drink business in the east region.
The east regional presentation will be held in Ipswich on 1 November, and the regional winners will be announced in December.
Owner and head brewer Martin James (pictured) said this acknowledgement is important for a rural micro-business such as Panther Brewery as it shows it is possible for a successful small enterprise to be recognised on a national level.
He said this is not always possible as the marketing budget is small compared with larger businesses, but hopes this exposure will improve national awareness of his product range.
Mr James is proud of Panther Brewery’s achievements to date, in particular its innovative product launches, such as Hopsta alcohol-free real ale, the craft range of aluminium-bottled real ale and Hunter dry hopped lager.
He said he owes the success of the business to his dedicated team and the support of the local community over the past nine years.
He is also grateful to Broadland District Council for providing advice and support with training, as well as enabling the business to take on an apprentice.
Panther has also benefitted from the help of Norfolk County Council, which enabled the micro-brewery to gain an EU rural development grant for funding an automated bottling line.
The company is also indebted to a number of local businesses, in particular Salle Farms and the Crisp Malting Group, which have ensured the malted barley used in the brewing process is grown from fields surrounding the brewery.
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