Emsworth's harvest heroes
Emsworth seized the opportunity to showcase its food heritage, earning second place in Love British Food’s Harvest Heroes competition.
Organised by Love British Food in conjunction with The Telegraph, as part of British Food Fortnight, the competition seeks to acknowledge the people who organise the most imaginative and inclusive celebrations of local food and the harvest.
The winners were chosen by a panel of judges led by The Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss MP, Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs; Raymond Blanc and his son Olivier.
The Emsworth Business Association, in conjunction with other local organisations, focused on the themes of education, community and celebration, encouraging people of all ages and backgrounds to take part.
Among the many ‘foodie’ events and activities to take place across the community were the Emsworth Apple Pressing day, creative writing for foodies, a ‘thought for food’ local showcase market and food education classes in local primary schools, in conjunction with Hampshire Farmers’ Markets.
Also, the community worked with The Beacon Food Bank to build a ‘Food Mountain’ by having food bank collection points located in Emsworth over the fortnight for people to donate food items. The food mountain was built and then donated at an open air Interdenominational Harvest Festival.
Alistair Gibson, member of the organising committee of Emsworth British Food Fortnight, said: “To be runners up this year, having been winners last year, is a remarkable achievement for Emsworth and in many ways even more of an achievement given the national interest.
“There is no doubt in my mind that people are so much more interested today in food, where it comes from and who produces it, the great thing of course is that food is after all a language we all speak. When you can combine that with a strong community and a place that has a very real food heritage then you have a pretty near perfect recipe for success. However it’s so important to recognise that we need to keep going - local producers and our independent high street need our continuing support to ensure they are available next year and the year after and into the future for today’s young people.”
Emsworth Business Association, emsworth.org.uk
British Food Fortnight, lovebritishfood.co.uk