Top food writers from throughout the UK joined in Scotland’s Year of Food and Drink Celebrations this week at the Guild of Food Writers Awards at Opera Holland Park in London.
Around 350 food journalists, bloggers, writers and authors heard about the fabulous produce from Scotland during the event which celebrates the very best of talent of those who inform and inspire the public about great food.
Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) was the main sponsor of the vibrant event where attendees enjoyed Scotch Beef PGI and Scotch Lamb PGI, provided by Macbeth’s at Forres, after the awards ceremony.
During an address to the food writer attendees, Carol McLaren, QMS Head of Communications, thanked the writers, authors, researchers and programme makers for the work they do to raise the profile of the top quality food which farmers throughout the country are committed to producing.
Ms McLaren also emphasised the quality of Scotland’s food larder. “Scotland’s beef and lamb has earned a global reputation for taste and quality and benefits from the Scottish terroir which is a key factor in eating quality.
“Scotch Beef and Scotch Lamb were among the first European red meat products to be granted the coveted PGI (Protected Geographical Indication) status in recognition of their European gastronomic heritage,” she said.
She also highlighted the priority given to animal welfare. “Scotch Beef is sourced from Scottish farms which must adopt best practice in animal welfare and production methods.
“Quality Meat Scotland is proud to have an ‘Animal Welfare and Wellbeing Charter’ and we work closely with Scotland’s leading animal welfare charity, the Scottish SPCA, to ensure welfare remains a top priority.”
Ms McLaren also explained the background to the quality assurance schemes which underpin the Scotch Beef PGI, Scotch Lamb PGI and Specially Selected Pork brands.
“This year is the 25th anniversary of the quality assurance schemes which underpin our iconic The Scots were pioneers of quality assurance and it is something which we remain very proud of,” she said.
“Traditional family farming remains at the heart of sheep and cattle production in Scotland and sustains rural communities throughout the country. The sustainability of our industry – social, economic and environmental – sets is apart.”
Photo: The winner of the Lifetime Achievement Award was celebrity chef, restaurateur and television presenter, Rick Stein OBE