Popular restaurant stops serving cod because of high cost – directing diners to local chippy instead

A popular restaurant has taken cod off its menu and is directing customers who want it to the local chippy instead.

Alex Cook, who runs The Mill in Stokesleyhas taken the decision in a bid to try and support his best mate who runs Ayton’s Traditional Fish and Chip Shop in the nearby village of Great Ayton. He says price rises have forced him to take the fish off his menu because the cost would not represent value for money for dinners.

code currently costs more than fillet steak, says Alex, who has called on the government to step in and help local businesses with VAT cuts before restaurants and food businesses can no longer afford to trade.

READ MORE:Guisborough butcher shutting within months as hard-up customers slash average spend from £7 to £3

“Ayton chippy is owned by my best friend since school days, David Grainge. The price of fresh cod this morning per kg was £29 – this is the highest I’ve ever known it. Oil in which it’s cooked in has gone up from £20 for 20ltr to £42. Everyone is aware of the soaring fuel costs. It’s a really really hard time at the moment and we need to support each other. Especially your friends,” said Alex.

“My message is really of one to keep supporting small local businesses and just to try to get the consumer to understand the challenges that are facing every food led business at the moment. It can’t continue, businesses can’t continue to absorb these costs A very simple solution to these problems would be to follow Ireland’s lead and drop VAT to 9%.

“The government invested heavily into our industry during the pandemic with eat out to help out and making bounce back loans available. There will be no return on this investment when the businesses they supported can no longer afford to trade. The government must act now before it’s too late.”



Alex Cook from The Mill, in Stokesley

His menu at The Mill simply states: “Currently cod is off our menu due to increasing cost. We suggest you support your local chippy! We recommend Ayton’s traditional fish and chip shop in Great Ayton!”

With all the added costs, says Alex, he’d have to charge diners at The Mill at least £22 for cod. “I’m unsure what Ayton’s charge but with costs continuing to rise it will be soon be above £10. Cod is currently more than fillet steak,” added Alex.

The price of fish and chips has been the subject of much debate recently with Teesside chippies facing mounting costs due to the price of cod as well as things like cooking oil and soaring power bills. TeessideLive has also reported how a Guisborough butcher is being forced to shut up shop as hard-up customers slash their spending and the cost of living crisis bites hard. Heartbroken Lee Byrski put “everything he had” into opening J&B Butchers in 2021 but less than a year later, soaring costs and have meant he’s working 70 hours a week without taking a wage for himself – just so he can pay his staff.

TeessideLive has also reported how the price of a portion of fish and chips has risen to £12 in some places nationally thanks to the cost of living crisis. A report from Saxo Markets published on June 9 found 40% of people have already given up takeaways because of spiraling costs.

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