With our increasing appetite for home--grown it seems only right that we have a fortnight every year to celebrate our great British food heritage.

The 15th British Food Fortnight runs from 23 Sept-8 Oct 2017 and this year is poised to stage another big splash with hundreds of events in schools, shops, pubs, restaurants, hospitals and communities across the country paying homage to our producers both locally and nationally.  In excess of 1.5 million meals a day served during the Fortnight will carry the great British food stamp, all courtesy of catering organisations including the likes of Sodexo, Brakes, Cucina and Hampshire Fare.

The campaign, run by Love British Food, kicked off earlier in the summer with official sponsors, Co-op backing UK farmers by only selling 100% British bacon, lamb, beef, chicken, ham, pork, sausages and turkey from May this year. Pop into any of the 2,600 Co-op stores and you will be greeted by food tasters, displays and promotions. There will be regional events in London, Edinburgh and Cardiff and a fun, educational roadshow on food provenance in primary schools.  It’s also launching a campaign to celebrate the UK’s Food Heroines, the female growers, producers, farmers and suppliers who keep British food traditions alive and thriving.

With legendary chef Raymond Blanc at the helm of British Food Fortnight and supported by wellbeing writer and organic farmer, Liz Earle there is a ground swell of support across the regions.  Raymond and Liz will be leading the search for the most imaginative celebrations of British food taking place during the Fortnight and anyone organising an event is encouraged to enter.  Entries are expected from the many towns and villages which are staging their very own food festival and giving a platform to the growing number of new artisan producers while applauding our local food heroes.

A highlight of the Fortnight is the Love British Food Harvest Torch which continues its journey around the country and this year will have travelled from Lincoln Cathedral to St. David’s Cathedral in Pembrokeshire.  The Harvest Torch is a symbol of thanksgiving for all our wonderful home-grown food and over 400 Harvest events will be taking place across the UK. A huge fan of the traditional harvest, Her Royal Highness, the Duchess of Cornwall will be sending words of support to the National Harvest Service at St. David’s.

“British Food Fortnight has been so powerful in inspiring people around the country, whether big cities like Bath and Peterborough or individual schools, care homes and most importantly tackling British food in the public sector,” says Alexia Robinson, founder of Love British Food and British Food Fortnight.  “In this 15th year, it’s evident that there is a real love for this event, unique in that even though it has such a national presence it is still very much a grassroots movement.

“Fresh challenges face farmers and the food industry this year and these are uncertain times but with backing from the big names in retail, foodservice, key charities and with Raymond Blanc and Liz Earle on board we’re seeing this event grow exponentially each year, and it speaks volumes about our changing attitude to the food we eat and where it comes from.”

Photo courtesy of Moor Hall Hotel