Help Our Hospitality: Award-winning family butchers praise Northampton for offering ‘something for everyone’
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The director of an award-winning family butchers has praised Northampton’s hospitality industry for offering “something for everyone”.
Having recently expressed her excitement that Sauls of Spratton is just three years from its centenary celebrations, Emma Price is the latest individual to share her insight for the Chronicle & Echo’s Help Our Hospitality campaign.
Sauls of Spratton, now located at Smiths Farm Shop in Brampton Lane, has been a well-established part of the town for 97 years.
The Saul family make their own sausages, pork pies, pates and potted beef, sausage rolls, cornish pasties and ready meals, following traditional recipes using the freshest ingredients.
Having won a number of prestigious awards, being known for selling pork rolls at Saints for more than a decade, and catering for national events with their trailers and vintage vans, the family business continues to thrive.
The three directors are currently Emma, her husband Mark Price and her father Chris Saul.
They are the fourth generation of family members to have taken over, and it was Emma’s grandad’s uncle that first opened the butchers almost a century ago.
Emma first got involved at around the age of 15, when she and her sister were roped into helping. More than three decades later, Emma is fully immersed in the family business.
When asked how the industry has evolved since then, Emma said: “There’s definitely a lot more focus on local and quality food, and knowing where it’s come from.
“A lot of people like handmade items. There are always trends with food, but people appreciate quality a lot now.”
Despite this change, the qualities needed to run a successful hospitality business have remained the same.
Emma said: “It’s about producing the best food you can, and being friendly and personable.
“Our regular customers love to talk to the team, and it’s a personal approach you won’t get from a supermarket.”
Emma also spoke of the impact of the pandemic, the cost of living crisis and the increase in costs and bills.
“It’s challenging for us,” she said. “It’s definitely a different kettle of fish from what it was 30 years ago.”
Talking about what she loves most about the industry, aside from family tradition, Emma said: “It’s always different, and we come up with new ideas and products.
“I like to cook at home, and everyone who works here enjoys food and likes to cook. We bounce off each other with new ideas.”
Emma hopes the reputation of a long-standing, family-run business like Sauls of Spratton gives them an advantage.
“It’s something I’ve always felt the need to keep up,” she said. “But everybody has to work hard no matter how long you’ve worked in the business.
“I’ve never felt competitive with other businesses as we’re all in the same boat. We support each other.”
Emma went on to commend the town and county for its “supportive” nature.
“There is so much choice and so many artisan food producers,” Emma added. “There’s something for everyone.”
When asked if the cost of living crisis has resulted in customers expecting more for their money and being cautious with spending, Emma said: “People are very cautious about spending money at all.
“It’s such a worry for us and every small business. It’s really difficult times at the moment. Particularly over Christmas, we’re hoping people come out and support local – or they won’t be here next year.”
Emma believes the next few years are going to be “very tough” for a lot of hospitality businesses and she says the industry “needs all the support we can get”.
Sauls of Spratton are now open for Christmas orders, which can be placed online or by giving the team a call on 01604 434342.