Thursday, 17 December 2009
Thursday, 24 September 2009
As the person responsible for the "fragile start" way back in 1998, I want to have my say. In her article in G2 today, Ms van der Zee says the market "will survive" - I'm not altogether so sure. I hope I'm proved wrong but Borough, like any market, is a living, breathing organism that needs to support - and be supported by - its traders. A consequence of the lack of the former brings about the lack of the latter and over the past few years rumours have swirled around the market and its environs - difficulties, quarrels, heavy-handedness of the former towards the latter... Whilst I'm not privy to details, and whilst I also know from years of running the FoodLovers Fairs how tricky it can be to found and build upon those delicate relationships, to be honest, over the years I have had some concerns about how Borough Market has been run - too many foreign stalls, too much food-to-go, no emphasis on food shopping, little long-term planning and development. The worry is that the temptation by the organisers is to go for the easier, more lucrative option - to turn it into a tourist attraction. This should not be allowed for a variety of reasons and primarily because as consumers we will all lose out. PS: Any suggestions as yo who could come in to help here? Boris, our mayor, for example.....
Wednesday, 16 September 2009
At Ludlow Food Festival last weekend I chaired a lively debate on Carnivores vs Vegetarians - What does the future hold? Speaking for meat-eaters were Tim Dobson of Chestnut Meats and Adam Glyn Jones of September Organic Dairy; veggies were represented by Das Sreedharan and Keith Squires, both vegetarian chefs. If the two sides didn't quite lock horns, then the points debated were certainly contentious. You might be surprised to hear that the pro-vegetarians were actively encouraging the meat-eaters and the carnivores were all for eating less meat... and both sides made some interesting points, particularly with regards the contribution rearing livestock makes to carbon emissions and how essential pasture land is to transforming the levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. It was all good-natured fun - mostly - and by the end on a show of hands, it was felt that one of the answers to this conundrum is to eat less meat - but better quality (higher welfare, etc) over the year. I think this is an argument that bears further exploration. Is it better to eat less, high-welfare meat or to abstain completely? If you're a vegetarian, would you prefer that cows, sheep, pigs, etc didn't exist at all or is there a way to get the world farming responsibly? Is farming even a viable existence these days or are farmers just out for the profit - and what role does the government play...? What do you think...?
Friday, 11 September 2009
Last month at FoodLoversBritain.com we launched our first FoodLovers Poll in order to see what you, our discerning foodie public, think of some topical issues. We asked: "When shopping for food, which is most important?" with the options of organic, locally sourced and price. The results are now in: Organic 10% (8 votes) Locally Sourced 64% (52 votes) Price 26% (21 votes) What do you think of these results? Do they match with your views? From my perspective they're spot on. Organic is all well and good but what's the point in seeking out organic produce if it's travelled miles to get to you? Let us know your thoughts or if you have any suggestions for future polls....