The BBC Food and Farming Awards took place in Bristol last night, marking the official kick-off event for the first edition of Bristol Food Connections, an 11-day festival celebrating food diversity and different food cultures. Thanks to a collaboration with the BBC, Slow Food International was invited to attend the award ceremony and take part in the festival this weekend.
The annual Food and Farming Awards, held yesterday for the 14th time, were established to mark the twenty-year anniversary of the BBC 4 Food Programme, the cult radio transmission for all those interested in food, both in the UK and abroad. Derek Cooper broadcasted the program for the first time on September 30, 1979, in a period in which food in the UK was a marginal topic of little interest. Since then however, the situation has changed drastically. Much of this is attributed to the outbreak of mad cow disease (BSE) in the UK in the 1980s. Cooper’s investigative broadcasts in regard to the topic remain memorable to this day. He defined the mission of the Food Programme as: “to eliminate wrong nutrition forever”. This year’s awards, hosted by Sheila Dillon and Valentine Warner, were dedicated to Derek, who passed away a few weeks ago.
Some of our favorites from the finalists and winners of this year’s award were:
Winner of “Best Street Food Takeaway”: The Pembrokeshire Beach Company – Aiming to celebrate the produce of the area, combining foraged seashore ingredients with fresh local seafood, the Pembrokeshire Beach Food Company have five mobile Beach Shacks offering signature local dishes.
Winner of “Best Food Market”: Aberystwyth Farmers’ Market – Launched in May 2000, Aberystwyth Farmers’ Market has up to 30 stalls every first and third Saturday in the month. In 2010 the market was voted amongst the Top 10 Farmers’ Market in the UK by the Times, the only Welsh market to be included.
One of the finalists for “Outstanding Farmers of the Year”: Steven Jack – Our delegation had the chance to meet Steven (who is from Inverness, Scotland) in person and later tried his fantastic carrots and potatoes.
And finally, the 2014 BBC Radio Bristol Food Hero Elizabeth Carruthers who educates children under the age of four to become “the chefs of the future.”
Find all the nominees and winners on the official awards page
From May 3 – 5, Slow Food will take part in Bristol Food Connections. Our contribution features a market with locally produced quality products that are at risk of extinction. The market showcases products listed in our Ark of Taste catalog, which collects small-scale quality productions that belong to the cultures, history and traditions of the entire planet but whose existence is threatened. The Slow Food area will also offer traditional Italian pizza in the pop-up pizzeria, as well as workshops to raise awareness about the importance of locally sourced ingredients and the links between taste and environmentally friendly choices.
Find out more about our invovlement: Slow Food brings international flavour to Bristol