Patrons of the Mareel arts centre will soon be tucking into locally-supplied snacks following a deal with Lerwick-based Scoop Wholefoods – but the venue’s popcorn machine is being mothballed.
It is expected that a range of Scoop’s goodies will be available from a re-designed Mareel front desk kiosk as of Thursday.
The venue has also decided to sell bags of Butterkist brand popcorn in the interests of “hygiene”, economy and offering customers more variety. However, the arts complex will not be getting rid of its popcorn machine, just in case there is a public demand for a return of the freshly-popped variety.
Mareel marketing manager Lauren Doughton said that the public would be able to choose from bags of buttered, salty, sweet or a cinema mix of all flavours and that the move had been made after people had requested different varieties.
She added that there would be less waste as it was difficult to gauge how much popcorn would be bought in any day, meaning Mareel was sometimes left with most of a batch. There should also be less mess with the pre-packaged product.
But “Friends of Mareel” will still be entitled to 10 per cent off their popcorn. “The membership schemes are still standing. It’s the method and packaging that are changing,” Ms Doughton added.
“We will be trying a few new things out and if the public do not like it, it does not mean we are committed to anything permanently.”
One of those changes is the introduction of snacks supplied by Scoop.
According to Ms Doughton Scoop became involved after customers had requested some of the treats that the shop has in store.
“These are healthier snacks and things people have been asking for since we opened. They should go down well with kids and adults,” she said.
Scoop will be supplying Bombay mix, chilli crackers, yoghurt raisins and nuts and dried fruit among other things.
Scoop owner Ann Johnson said that many people had dropped along the Toll Clock based shop to buy snacks before going to Mareel.
She added that she had been about to approach the arts centre about the possibility of doing business when she got a call from box office manager Wendy Tulloch to see if Scoop would be interested in supplying Mareel.
“I think it’s great that they are using a local source,” said Ms Johnson. “It’s really something positive and of course the public can now buy healthier snacks in the venue.”