THE Best Independent Food and Drink Retailer shows how they are changing the way good quality food and drink is being sourced and sold.

The finalists are: Mailes Brothers, Oakchurch Farm Shop, and The Green Bean Shop.

Mailes Brothers has been trading in the Butter Market for nearly 60 years and are constantly innovating and evolving to meet changing customer demands and the changing nature of retail.

Ralph Lloyd has owned the business since 2013 but has worked with the business since 1982.

He said: "We have seen huge changes both in the market and on the Hereford High Street.

"We are always striving to meet changing customer needs and listen to both our existing customer base and the new shoppers to supply what they are looking for.

"We now supply to commercial establishments locally who use our knowledge and experience to offer their customers local and quality produce."

They are expanding their range to include local ciders and apple juice, local honey, pickles, chutneys and so on because people come to the market to buy local.

They stock products from Colcombe House, Lane Cottage Produce, Three Fruity Ladies and Crome Cuisine. All their sausages and bacon are British and come from suppliers they have used for a number a years so their provenance and quality is known.

Ralph added: "Our knowledge and passion for our products is second to none and we pride ourselves on our customer service."

Oakchurch Farm Shop in Staunton-on-Wye is a culinary showcase for more than 90 local food and drink producers, local farmers and growers of fruit and veg.

Nick Price said: "Our own farm supplies us with our melt-in-the-mouth award-winning beef and soft fruit, our cooks make a large variety of delicious ready-made meals, award winning pies, sausage rolls, scotch eggs, roulades, treacle tarts and much more."

They constantly taste test everything that they sell. They have dozens of local suppliers including: Hedonist Bakery, Alex Gooch bread, Franks Luxury biscuits, Alan Kay wine, Gundog gin, Nell Gwynne Cider and Wye Valley Apiaries Honey.

Nick said: "Members of our team are made responsible for their own departments, product purchasing and displaying of the merchandise of their department.

"This really helps with good product knowledge and makes staff feel an emotional investment in the merchandise, their department and the shop as a whole."

They've raised thousands of pounds for St Michael's Hospice through fashion shows and other fundraising events and raised £1,400 for local Macmillan Nurses in Hereford through their recent vintage tractor day.

They have helped financially to install a defibrillator in Staunton-on-Wye.

They will be celebrating their 50th year in business in 2020.

The Green Bean in Broad Street, Weobley provides a good community service for locals and tourists alike.

Emily Starnes said: "We have a wide range of fresh fruit and vegetables, a deli, and lots of local produce from Herefordshire and the counties around.

"We sell books, greetings cards, all supplied by local people and we have leaflets, maps and information for the tourists."

Nine years ago, Emily took over a small fruit and veg shop which also sold bread and a few jars. She started to sell a lot of local produce and offer a wider range of items.

Then five years ago she moved next door to a larger property where she developed the range of what she sold and also opened a cafe in the other half of the building.

Now the deli counter in the shop also includes freshly made food, made in the cafe - for instance quiches and salads.

Herefordshire suppliers include: Fat Man Chilli, Parton's fruit juice, Weobley Ash apple juice, Method Roastery coffee, Hereford Honey from Ledgemoor, Sue Gilmour chocolates, Tyrrells crisps, The Green Bean marmalade and preserves, Myrtle's jams and chutneys and Country Cook cakes.