Sherwood, Nottingham, England is a suburb about two miles from Nottingham city centre. Along the Mansfield Road, Sherwood's main thoroughfare, lie a number of food outlets. There are two Indian restaurants, a Japanese restaurant, a Caribbean restaurant, a French wine bar, a pizzeria which doubles as a Moroccan restaurant, an Italian restaurant, a Mediterranean restaurant, two cafés, a good quality restaurant serving a cosmopolitan menu, and another eclectically oriented, but rather lower quality restaurant. There are two Indian and three Chinese takeaway services, a takeaway pizza shop, a fish and chip shop, a southern fried chicken shop and six bars and pubs, most of which offer some type of menu. Restaurants come and go, and within the last few years Sherwood has also boasted a Mexican restaurant and a Thai takeaway. Less than a mile away there is a McDonald's restaurant. On the retail side, there is a Kwik Save and a Co-op supermarket, a smaller Spar store, two greengrocers, two bakers, a delicatessen, a wholefood shop and a store specializing in Polish food. Within a mile are a large Sainsbury's supermarket and a new, small Tesco.
Sherwood, one might imagine, is fairly typical of British suburban areas. It offers a wide range of restaurant and takeaway opportunities, from traditional English food (the cafés, the fish and chip shop) to global franchises (McDonald's); from common forms of 'foreign' cuisine (Indian and Chinese food, pizzas), to the more 'exotic' (Japanese, Caribbean, Moroccan). Similarly, the shops and supermarkets offer products ranging from locally grown potatoes to South African butternut squash; from locally produced Stilton cheese to mass-produced Coca-Cola. From the local to the global, from the traditional to the exotic: the food industries in contemporary Britain would seem to offer us culinary and cultural diversity, particularly when contrasted with the more restricted opportunities available to consumers just thirty years ago. At the same time, however, Sherwood offers much the same array of products and outlets