Today sees the launch of the national British Food Fortnight competition, run in association with Co-op. Looking for the best community celebration of British food in schools, hospitals, care homes, community groups, pubs, restaurants and whole villages, towns and cities taking place 21st September to 6th October 2019.
This popular competition, in its 7th year, sees an increase on entries and interest every year from those wishing to celebrate the food produced in their region. Be it schools, care homes, village groups, local councils and caterers, as well as restaurant, pubs and shops they all use British Food Fortnight to promote local producers. Previous winners include 2018 winners Hampshire who delivered British meals to over 450 schools across the county, and organised interactive foodie activity with individual schools. Other entries included the cities of Peterborough, organising a 2-day food celebration including 500 locals joining for a celebratory dinner in the city centre. The village of Haslington in Cheshire organised a lunch on village green for the whole community proving that large and small communities can take part.
The competition panel includes Love British Food ambassadors Raymond Blanc, OBE, Liz Earle, MBE, Candice Brown and Minette Batters, President of the NFU, founder of British Food Fortnight, Alexia Robinson and Breige Donaghy, Director of Delicious Food at Co-op.
“I am delighted the Co-op are continuing their support for the British Food Fortnight competition. They really are the perfect partner as they are the ultimate community retailer. I am so excited every year to see the competition grow as the number of communities realise just how important it is to support our farmers, producers and local food business. The competition allows communities to work and appreciate the delicious and diverse food that is produced on our doorsteps,” said Alexia Robinson.
“Entries should highlight how people were educated on British food during British Food Fortnight and include events that really highlight local communities with the added benefit of including a legacy that can be built on year on year.”
Raymond Blanc has been involved with the competition since it launched back in 2012. He said: “Last year the competition entries were fantastic and made my job of judging incredibly difficult. I remember some great entries including preschool, care homes remembering food through the decades and we even had a hospital roof garden that took part. It was great to see such a variety of events taking place and, of course, the increased interest in British Food. The 2018 winner, Hampshire Fare, are carrying on their celebration by launching British Food Fortnight later this year and importantly continuing the education of more school children in their county. I am very excited to see many more inspirational entries this year.”
Breige Donaghy, Director of Delicious Food, Co-op said: “We take real pride in our support of British farmers and producers and I am delighted we are continuing to be the Official Partner of Love British Food and British Food Fortnight for the third year. As a community retailer, we see every day the joy of bringing people together over food and drink. This competition is an exciting way to encourage communities, friends and families to join together in celebration British food and drink, and I can’t wait to see this year’s entries”.
As well as having a Love British Food Ambassador attend their event in 2020, the winners will be presented with the Love British Food 2019 trophy, £250 in Co-op vouchers as well as a case of Co-op award winning ‘Les Pionniers’ champagne and a selection of goodies from the campaign ambassadors.
Entering is easy, all you have to do is organise your event during British Food Fortnight, take plenty of photos and post them on your social media sites if you can. See terms & conditions on www.lovebritishfood.co.uk along with details on how to enter. The website includes loads of ideas on what to do, recipes and fun facts. There is also ‘how to’ guides for all – from chefs to school teachers, local councillors to shop owners – just download what you need.