Julie Monkman of Produced in Kent to quit county
Kentish food and drink producers are losing one of their
Julie Monkman, manager of Produced in Kent (PinK), is heading
north after four years at the helm.
She is moving from Kent after 29 years to be closer to her
parents in her native Yorkshire and to take on a new job.
She said she would be sad to leave Kent. “It is a truly
wonderful county which if I’m honest, I’ve only discovered properly
in the last four years that I’ve been at PinK.
"I love it here and certainly won’t be a stranger, but Yorkshire
is in my blood and where my family need me to be.
"Working at PinK has been the most special and rewarding years
of my working life and I have met some amazing people.”
Produced in Kent is based in Hadlow, operating with a staff of
four and a budget of £250,000.
It is principally funded by Kent County Council and Hadlow
College with support from member producers, but like other food
promotion groups, has faced financial pressure in recent years.
A few similar groups have gone under, while others, like
Deliciously Yorkshire, have had to make radical cutbacks.
Yet with limited resources, PinK has continued to raise the
profile of Kentish food and drink and promote producers, showcasing
their efforts, for example, in the annual Taste of Kent Awards.
Ms Monkman has also campaigned for schools to buy more Kentish
produce and educate pupils in where food comes from.
“We are five months into our new three-year strategic vision and
you will see our profile developing further with the new projects
we have planned,” she added.
“This can only benefit the membership and any other Kent
businesses that choose to join the PinK crusade.”
Despite funding issues, KCC is expected to appoint a successor
and maintain its support.
“PinK is here to stay and whilst we remain committed to
supporting all our members, support from around the county is
equally important in ensuring that we remain sustainable and able
to support the future development of the food, drink and artisan
craft sectors in Kent.”
Ms Monkman is to set up a sales and marketing department for the
170-year old Kingston Unity Friendly Society, based in
- A full-page feature on Produced in Kent is in the August issue
of Kent Business, also available online.