Press Release: Stand with us for British Food and Farming
British Food Fortnight 19th Sept - 4th Oct 2015
This autumn everyone is standing together in support of British food and British producers during British Food Fortnight. Politicians, top chefs and national institutions are all getting behind the campaign. Will you stand with us?
British food production and food security are more important than ever and simply put, British food really matters. Plus, it's great fun discovering, preparing and eating it!
British Food Fortnight provides an opportunity for everyone involved in food production, processing and sales to talk about the benefits of buying local and British. Consumers are invited to buy British and communities to come together in the age-old tradition of celebrating food at this, the traditional time for celebrating the harvest.
In a message of support of British food celebrations at harvest time, which will be sent to participating Cathedrals, HRH The Duchess of Cornwall said “The Harvest is an act of celebration that is repeated all over the world and, I hope, is one that the people of Britain will join in with, in ever greater force, year after year. By observing the Harvest we are acknowledging, appreciating and supporting the exceptional work of our farmers and producers.”
National Farmers Union Deputy President Minette Batters said: “The NFU is proud to be a supporter of British Food Fortnight. It acts as a great focus point where people can talk about the importance of British food to the nation and celebrate the diverse range of British produce on offer at this time of year.”
“The overwhelming recent levels of public support have demonstrated that the British public want to back British farming and we would encourage consumers during British Food Fortnight to keep asking retailers what they are doing to ensure their farmers receive a fair price and above all keep buying British.”
“As a farmer I want to be able to share my passion for producing, in my case, great quality beef. Farmers across the country are rightly proud of what they do in bringing British food to the table and I would encourage everyone to get involved whether that’s by attending their local harvest festival, holding an event or simply by buying British food.”
Environment Secretary Elizabeth Truss said:“Food and drink is at the heart of British life—the seafood from our beautiful coast, cheese from lush pastures and innovative gin building on centuries of London heritage. British Food Fortnight is a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the diversity, quality and tradition of our great food and drink across the country.
“The huge enthusiasm for our astonishing variety of produce is helping grow our food and farming industry, which already contributes over £100bn a year to the economy.
“People want to buy British because they know it is of the highest quality, they are confident about how it is produced and because it tastes great."
Chef Raymond Blanc O.B.E. is supporting the campaign and said: “British Food Fortnight is THE opportunity for producers, processors, retailers, caterers and consumers to join together in connecting more people with what they eat and drink, and increasing the opportunity at every level to choose healthy, seasonal, local produce.British Food Fortnight is about reconnecting with growing food, enjoying food, respecting food and celebrating food. We should all celebrate during the fortnight, and I hope beyond.”
WHAT CAN I DO?
Buy British and local:
- Visit your local Farmers Market - you will be able to find everything you need.
- Walk down your local high street and visit independent stores – butchers, bakers, fishmongers and greengrocers.
- In supermarkets, always looking for the Red Tractor label.
- Make sure you are buying in season – these products are much more likely to be British.
- Buy milk direct from the farmer if you can.
Get active on social media:
- Use the hashtag #LoveBritishFood and tag @LoveBritishFood to spread the word about British Food Fortnight.
- Enter our social media competition; we have teamed up with the NFU and Fortnum & Mason and want to hear about your favourite British ingredients. Our favourite post will win a Fortnum & Mason Mayfair Hamper.
- Watch and share our short film to hear further why chef Raymond Blanc, TV gardener Chris Collins and Olivier Blanc think that now is more important than ever to get involved in growing, cooking and celebrating British produce.
Organise an event and enter it into our Harvest Heroes Competition.The winners will be treated to a behind-the-scenes tour of the new National Heritage Garden at Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons, Raymond Blanc’s Michelin Starred restaurant and be presented with a special award by the Secretary of State. For information and how to enter visit www.telegraph.co.uk/harvest
Visit our website for a list of 14 things you can do - one for each day of the fortnight.
BRITISH FARE, EVERYWHERE!
Pubs and restaurants, cafes and canteens, farmers and fishmongers, are all joining in to promote their industries and to celebrate with British menus, producer open days, special promotions and local food suppers. Examples of those standing together for British food are:
- The National Federation of Women’s Institutes is sharing recipes and discussing food related topics at meetings during the Fortnight.
- The National Farmers Union has released a useful campaign toolkit to help consumers promote British food.
- The National Trust is cooking up special British themed menus in their restaurants and providing recipe cards for visitors to take away. They are organising food themed events in their properties, spearheaded by their Tyntesfield property, which will host a special food market and kitchen garden tours.
- The Council for the Protection of Rural England is running a digital campaign to highlight the importance of local food grown in our Green Belts.
- TV gardener Chris Collins is visiting schools encouraging them to plant seeds and cook up a storm in the kitchen.
- Churches are encouraging and organising gatherings to celebrate British produce. You can find your local harvest service via A Harvest Near You and cathedrals leading the charge with special services are Canterbury, Lincoln and Ripon.
- 2015 sees the first Love Your Local Market for British Food Fortnight campaign. Kicking off with the Highland Craft Beer and Cider Festival in Covent Garden on the 18th September, markets up and down the country are getting the bunting out to celebrate British Food Fortnight. Register your market with Love Your Local Market here.
Caterers, Care-homes and Retailers
- Hallmark Care Homes is holding British themed days including a coast to coast menu for residents, friends and families and the Hospital Caterers Association is organising events across hospitals including pop-up markets and harvest festivals.
- Three Cucina school restaurants are holding a ‘You’re The Chef’ competition inviting students to design their own British dishes. Head Chefs at each of the restaurants will decide the winner, with the winning dish cooked for the school during British Food Fortnight. The three participating schools are Wilmington Academy, Kent, Southfield School for Girls, Kettering and Francis Combe Academy, Watford.
- Centreplate, the caterers at Malvern Theatre, will be offering afull culinary experience for visitors, with fish harvested from some of our national ports and an educational piece on how produce is harvested from our oceans and brought to our tables. Seasonal vegetables will be incorporated into delicious desserts that family and friends can create at home and enjoy!
- Harrison Catering Services has created ten British dishes to be featured on its menus at its locations throughout England. The dishes feature ingredients such as kale, mackerel and blackberries, all seasonal at this time of year. A special British Food Fortnight menu template has also been created to enable the company’s individual catering teams to publicise the fortnight to customers.
- British Corner Shop is going international and promoting a global British Food Fortnight – UKTI Germany are on board!
WHAT RESOURCES ARE AVAILABLE TO HELP PEOPLE TAKE PART?
Keep a look out on www.lovebritishfood.co.uk for details of all the activities, lots of ideas for taking part and 14 things you can do - one for each day of British Food Fortnight. Check out our What’s Happening Map for foodie events taking place near you. Download our bunting and posters. Be the first to hear the news by following the activities on Twitter @LoveBritishFood, #Love British Food, and Facebook: Love-British-Food
WHERE CAN WE FIND OUT MORE?
Notes to Editors:
For further information and images please contact Love British Food on
Twitter: @LoveBritishFood #BuyBritishFood
Food events happening during British Food Fortnightcan be found on our What's Happening pages.
British Food Fortnight is the annual celebration of the diverse and delicious food that Britain produces. It was founded in 2002 response to the foot and mouth crisis in order to encourage the public to support British farmers and food producers. Hundreds of shops, pubs, and restaurants take part every year with special menus and promotions. The event is also an established date on the school calendar, with many schools using it as an opportunity to teach children about food. It is organised by Love British Food, a small independent organisation that educates consumers, retailers and caterers about the benefits of buying British.
British Food Fortnight is organised by Love British Food and is sponsored by a large family of organisations led by the National Farmers Union, British Corner Shop, Centreplate, Harrison Catering Serviced Ltd, Hallmark Care Homes, Cucina Restaurants and Whiting and Hammond.
Bring Home the Harvest sits alongside British Food Fortnight and aims to reinvigorate the tradition of celebrating the harvest. It is supported by a committee of organisations and individuals including the National Trust, Women’s Institute, National Association of British Market Authorities, the Church of England, National Federation of Young Farmers Clubs, Country Markets, The University Caterers Association and the Women’s Food and Farming Union.