An annual celebration of the flavours of Scotland is taking place over the next two weeks. And we're getting involved.
Scottish Food & Drink Fortnight officially kicked off on Saturday 6th September this year. It lasts until the 21st, and aims to encourage people to try out Scottish produce.
The Scottish food and drink industry is enjoying an extremely successful period: craft beer sales are up by almost a quarter since 2009, it has experienced a 20% overall increase in food and drink productivity and 360,000 people are now employed in Scotland’s food and drink sector.
In fact, according to Scotland Food & Drink’s Communications & Marketing Manager Sophie Fraser, the industry is now valued at almost £14 billion, making food and drink Scotland’s top exports.
Scottish Food & Drink Fortnight is an annual celebration of Scotland’s “fantastic natural larder, and Scotland’s reputation as a land of food and drink”.
The Fortnight’s history
The Scottish Food & Drink Fortnight has been running since the early noughties.
Sophie says that it was previously run by the Scottish Countryside Alliance, but Scotland Food & Drink took over the management in 2009.
A ‘Food Adventure’
With all eyes on Scotland because of the upcoming vote on independence, this year's Scottish Food & Drink Fortnight happens to fall at a very apposite time. Though the timing is a coincidence, and it’s business as usual for Scotland Food & Drink, there’s a strong interest in everything Scottish right now – and that includes produce.
The organisers think that one of the best ways to experience the fortnight is to make the effort to have a ‘Food Adventure’. That could take one of many forms; Sophie suggests that people living in Scotland might discover a local producer they wouldn’t otherwise buy from, or try out a product that might not be traditionally Scottish, but is “made with fantastic local ingredients, for example an artisan chocolate or a local soft drink.”
But what about those of us who don’t live in Scotland, and can’t get there over these two weeks? Well, Scottish produce is available throughout the UK, and you can use it to cook up a storm at home – why not try out some of the Scottish Recipe of the Day suggestions by the Fortnight’s organisers?
If you are in Scotland, there’s plenty of events to keep you occupied (over 200!) from farmers markets to beer festivals, foraging events, specialist taster events and more. You can look up what’s on near you on the event calendar.
lovefood’s Scottish Food Adventure
Over the next few days, I’ll be cooking and tasting some traditional Scottish dishes (hopefully without mishap). If you're up for the challenge too, tell us what you cooked and what you thought of it in the comments below, and share pictures with us via our Facebook or Twitter pages.
Here's a video on how various people would describe Scottish food and drink using three words only.
Will you be visiting Scotland for the Food & Drink Fortnight? Do you fancy trying out some Scottish recipes? Let us know what you’ll be cooking in the Comments below.
All pictures courtesy of Scotland Food & Drink
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